IMDb > Cry, the Beloved Country (1951)

Cry, the Beloved Country (1951) More at IMDbPro »

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Writers (WGA):
Alan Paton (novel)
Alan Paton (screenplay)
View company contact information for Cry, the Beloved Country on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
16 November 1951 (South Africa) See more »
Filmed in Africa...Where It Was Lived! See more »
In the back country of South Africa, black minister Stephen Kumalo (Canada Lee) journeys to the city to search for his missing son... See more » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Nominated for 2 BAFTA Film Awards. Another 2 wins & 1 nomination See more »
User Reviews:
Righting Terrible Wrongs See more (8 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)
Canada Lee ... Stephen Kumalo
Charles Carson ... James Jarvis

Sidney Poitier ... Reverend Msimangu
Joyce Carey ... Margaret Jarvis
Geoffrey Keen ... Father Vincent

Michael Goodliffe ... Martens, Probation Official at Reformatory
Edric Connor ... John Kumalo, Brother of Stephen
Charles McRae ... Church Friend of Stephen
Lionel Ngakane ... Absolom Kumalo, Son of Stephen
Vivien Clinton ... Mary (Wedded to Absolom)
Albertina Temba ... Mrs. Kumalo, Wife of Stephen
Bruce Anderson ... Frank Smith, Farmer and Friend of James Jarvis
Bruce Meredith Smith ... Captain Jaarsveldt, Policeman Bearing News of Murder
Berdine Grünewald ... Mary Jarvis, Wife of Arthur (as Berdine Grunewald)
Cecil Cartwright ... Harrison, Father of Mary Jarvis
Andrew Kay ... John Harrison, Brother of Mary Jarvis and Friend of Arthur
Max Dhlamini ... Father Thomas
Shayiaw Riba ... Father Tisa
Tsepo Gugushe ... Gertrude's Child
Ribbon Dhlamini ... Gertrude, Sister of Stephen
Danie Adrewmah ... Young Man, Client of Gertrude
Emily Pooe ... Mrs. Ndela (Absolom's Lodging)
Reginald Ngeabo ... Taxi Driver (Lead to Absolom)
Michael Golden ... Second reporter
Clement McCallin ... First reporter
Stanley Van Beers ... Judge
John Arnatt ... Prison warden
Scott Harrold ... Police superintendent
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Henry Blumenthal ... Arthur Jarvis
Berdine Brunewald ... Berdine Grunewald
Cyril Kwaza ... Matthew Kumalo, Son of John
Evelyn Nayati ... Mrs. Lithebe (Stephen's Lodging)

Directed by
Zoltan Korda 
Writing credits
Alan Paton (novel)

Alan Paton (screenplay)

John Howard Lawson  screenplay (originally uncredited)

Produced by
Zoltan Korda .... producer
Alan Paton .... producer
Original Music by
Raymond Gallois-Montbrun  (as R. Gallois Montbrun)
Cinematography by
Robert Krasker 
Film Editing by
David Eady 
Art Direction by
Wilfred Shingleton 
Costume Design by
Maisie Kelly 
Makeup Department
Peter Evans .... makeup artist
William Bell .... key makeup artist (uncredited)
Production Management
Jack Swinburne .... production manager
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
John Bremer .... assistant director
Sound Department
Lee Doig .... dubbing editor
Jack Drake .... dubbing editor
Max Elliott .... dubbing editor
Red Law .... sound
John W. Mitchell .... sound
Camera and Electrical Department
Peter Lang .... camera operator: second unit
Gerry Massy-Collier .... camera operator (as C. Massy-Collier)
David Millen .... camera operator: second unit
Gerry Fisher .... assistant camera: interiors (uncredited)
Editorial Department
Valerie Leslie .... assistant editor
Music Department
Hubert Clifford .... musical director
Raymond Gallois-Montbrun .... music arranger (as R. Gallois Montbrun)
Other crew
Maisie Kelly .... continuity
Frank Rogaly .... advisor: Africa
Crew believed to be complete

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
103 min | Canada:96 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Did You Know?

The black-listed writer John Howard Lawson was not given an on-screen credit until after his death.See more »
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16 out of 16 people found the following review useful.
Righting Terrible Wrongs, 18 June 2007
Author: bkoganbing from Buffalo, New York

A really good film could be made about the making of Cry, the Beloved Country which in itself is a landmark film about the early stages of the formal apartheid society in the Union of South Africa.

There's a famous story of Alfred Hitchcock shooting the scene with Cary Grant fleeing the United Nations on the sly with a hidden camera because the UN would not grant him permission to film. That's nothing to what Zoltan Korda had to just even getting Canada Lee and young Sidney Poitier into South Africa in the guise of houseboys. He filmed all the outdoor stuff on location there and the government never caught on. Had they caught on it might have meant prison, it certainly at a minimum would have resulted in deportation.,

Canada Lee plays Reverend Stephen Kumalo who comes to Johannesburg in search of his missing son Absalom. Another man of the cloth, Sidney Poitier helps him search for his son who among other things has gotten a woman pregnant and has committed murder during a robbery attempt in a fit of panic.

The rest of the story is not a pleasant one, but strangely uplifting as Lee, father of the murderer and the father of the victim who was a liberal South African fighting the apartheid regime pledge mutually out of their grief to work for a just society. It took a long time and it's not all together there yet, but South Africa is one of the great success stories of the past century about people of good will righting terrible wrongs.

Alan Paton the author was a prophet with no honor in his own country. His book, a world best seller, was banned in the Union of South Africa and Paton himself ostracized. Paton was a committed Christian who really did believe that all people were indeed equal and fought for that ideal all his life. He died in the mid eighties and sadly did not live to see the fall of apartheid.

Though a big budget film of Cry, the Beloved Country came out in the nineties, this time with the cooperation of the Mandela government, this film still sets a high standard just for courage in the making.

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