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When I Grow Up (1951)

Approved | | Drama | 20 April 1951 (USA)
"When I Grow Up" is an uncharacteristically modest film from producer Sam Spiegel (during his "S. P. Eagle" years). Bobby Driscoll plays a young boy who feels neglected and misunderstood at... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Josh / Danny Reed
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Father Reed
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Mother Reed (1890's)
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Ruthie Reed
Johnny McGovern ...
Duckface Kelly
Frances Chaney ...
Mrs. Kelly (as Frances Cheney)
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Bobo
Ralph Dumke ...
Carp
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Doc
Paul Levitt ...
Carp's Assistant
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Dr. Bailey
Margaret Lloyd ...
Volunteer Nurse
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Grandpa Reed
...
Father Reed (modern) (as Henry Morgan)
Elisabeth Fraser ...
Mother Reed (modern)
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Storyline

"When I Grow Up" is an uncharacteristically modest film from producer Sam Spiegel (during his "S. P. Eagle" years). Bobby Driscoll plays a young boy who feels neglected and misunderstood at home. Preparing to run away, Bobby chances across an old diary once kept by his grandfather (Charley Grapewin). Leafing through the yellowed pages, Bobby discovers that grandpa went through many of the same childhood travails that Bobby is enduring at that moment--and look how well gramps turned out! Armed with a renewed understanding of (and appreciation for) his elders, Bobby decides to stick around for a while and see how things develop. Written by filmfactsman

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Drama

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Release Date:

20 April 1951 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Denny på rymmarstråt  »

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Technical Specs

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Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

George Fields, who plays the harmonica in the opening theme, also plays the harmonica solo in the song "Moon River" for Breakfast at Tiffany's (1961). See more »

Quotes

Father Reed (modern): Danny! Show a little respect or I'll belt ya one.
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User Reviews

When I Grow Up is one of my favorites but I can't find anyone else who has seen it.
3 March 2002 | by (Sapporo, Japan) – See all my reviews

I saw "When I Grow Up" 40 years ago, have not only been looking for it ever since, but have also tried in vain to find anyone else in the world who has even heard of it. Even now, I can't tell the story line of the film without holding back tears when I get to the "Mom, where's Dad?" scene when Bobby Driscoll finally comes out of his fever coma.

Like the boy in the film, I also never achieved the going fishing relationship with my father that the film symbolizes. But I thought I would, "maybe next week or the month after that." And when my father died, "When I Grow Up" was one of the first things I thought of as having been a reminder or a warning that I hadn't heeded soon enough.

But when my own son was born, I remembered it and I heeded it. And the message of "When I Grow Up" was with my son and me all of the days of my Brandon's childhood. With a little luck, in a few years I'll be the grandfather responding to my grandson, "You know, I can't think of anything I'd rather do" when he says to me "Hey, Grandpa. Let's go fishing."


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