7.1/10
261
13 user 3 critic

The Great Man (1956)

Joe Harris, preparing a eulogy for popular radio commentator Herb Fuller, finds that nobody has a good word to say about him.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 2 nominations. See more awards »

Photos

Add Image Add an image

Do you have any images for this title?

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

This 'prequel' to The Little Foxes tells how the ruthless members of the old-South Hubbard family got that way.

Director: Michael Gordon
Stars: Fredric March, Dan Duryea, Edmond O'Brien
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

When a brutal police detective Lt. murders a bookmaker's runner for $25,000 in cash, a deaf mute sees him do it, and now he finds he must kill again to cover his tracks.

Directors: Howard W. Koch, Edmond O'Brien
Stars: Edmond O'Brien, John Agar, Marla English
Cluny Brown (1946)
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A free-spirited parlor maid and a Czech refugee surprise an English village with their unconventional ways.

Director: Ernst Lubitsch
Stars: Charles Boyer, Jennifer Jones, Peter Lawford
Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

One dark summer night, Francesca Cunningham, a once world famed pianist, escapes from her hospital room and tries to commit suicide by jumping off a local bridge. She is rescued and taken ... See full summary »

Director: Compton Bennett
Stars: James Mason, Ann Todd, Herbert Lom
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

When the co-owner of a secretarial school visits a magazine editor to find out why he runs through secretaries, she's mistaken for an applicant. Drawn to him, she accepts the position.

Director: Alfred E. Green
Stars: Jean Arthur, George Brent, Lionel Stander
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Visiting her two sisters and brother, singer Petey Brown lands a job at small-time-hood Nicky Toresca's nightclub. While evading the sleazy Toresca's heavy-handed passes at her, she falls ... See full summary »

Director: Raoul Walsh
Stars: Ida Lupino, Robert Alda, Andrea King
Possessed (1931)
Certificate: Passed Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Ambitious factory Girl Marion Martin meets a handsome well-to-do, but he's interested in her as a mistress, not a wife.

Director: Clarence Brown
Stars: Joan Crawford, Clark Gable, Wallace Ford
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

A formal tailcoat that gets passed from one owner to another affects each life in a significant way.

Director: Julien Duvivier
Stars: Charles Boyer, Rita Hayworth, Ginger Rogers
Midnight Mary (1933)
Certificate: Passed Crime | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A young woman is on trial for murder. In flashback, we learn of her struggles to overcome poverty as a teenager -- a mistaken arrest and prison term for shoplifting and lack of employment ... See full summary »

Director: William A. Wellman
Stars: Loretta Young, Franchot Tone, Ricardo Cortez
Union Depot (1932)
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Travelers of different and varied backgrounds meet and interact on one night in a metropolitan train station and its environs.

Director: Alfred E. Green
Stars: Douglas Fairbanks Jr., Joan Blondell, Guy Kibbee
Comedy | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Jimmy writes the 'Up and Down Broadway' column for the New York Globe, and he is head over heels for Mary. But Mary is more interested in her career and is looking at starring on Broadway ... See full summary »

Director: William A. Wellman
Stars: Douglas Fairbanks Jr., Ann Dvorak, Frances Dee
Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Cowboy Ross McEwen arrives in town. He asks the banker for a loan of $2000. When the banker asks about securing a loan that large, McEwen shows him his six-gun collateral. The banker hands ... See full summary »

Director: Alfred E. Green
Stars: Joel McCrea, Frances Dee, Charles Bickford
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Philip Carleton
...
Sid Moore
...
Carol Larson
Joanne Gilbert ...
Ginny
...
Paul Beaseley
...
Nick Cellantano
Russ Morgan ...
Eddie Brand
...
Dr. O'Connor (as Edward C. Platt)
...
Mike Jackson
...
Harry Connors
...
Charley Carruthers
Henny Backus ...
Mrs. Helen Rieber
Janie Alexander ...
Mary Browne
Vikki Dougan ...
Marcia Miller - Receptionist
Edit

Storyline

On the death of popular national radio commentator Herb Fuller, underling Joe Harris undertakes to prepare an hour long, eulogistic program featuring interviews with Fuller's friends. But, though Fuller was beloved by 150 million of what all the pros term the "great unwashed," all Harris can find is victims, cynical users, and outright enemies of Fuller. Is this where the magic of editing comes in? Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

"The Great Man? I figured I could handle him all right, but I was wrong...I couldn't...not that first night...or ever!" See more »

Genres:

Drama

Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

December 1956 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Luz de uma Ilusão  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Loosely based on the career of Arthur Godfrey. See more »

Goofs

When Joe, Mike, and Jinny are listening to the "blood bank" tape, the VU meter has no relation to the audio. See more »

Quotes

Joe Harris: [First, & Last, lines] It all started on a Tuesday. It was a Tuesday like any other Tuesday.
See more »

Connections

Version of Pretendent (1987) See more »

Soundtracks

Rock of Ages
Music by Thomas Hastings
Lyrics by Augustus Montague Toplady
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Do we broadcast the legend?
27 June 2015 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

A radio broadcaster and news commentator named Herb Fuller is injured and later dies in the hospital with word according to his doctor Edward Platt that aren't fit for broadcast. The radio network that he worked for has a vested interest in the personality of Fuller and what do they do. In The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance editor Carleton Young had the ready answer about when the legend becomes fact, print the legend.

Entertainment journalist Jose Ferrer is chosen to host a special radio tribute broadcast and it's put out through the grapevine that Ferrer could be the replacement for The Great Man. All Ferrer has to do is put together a show that fosters the legend of the late Mr. Fuller.

Easier said than done because all Ferrer comes up with in talking to those around him is what a no good rat this guy was. The man had not a sincere bone in his body, a two perfect two faced Janus with one face for the public and a completely different one for those who knew him.

Ferrer who directed this film as well as starred in it made sure that the supporting cast was a good one with some unforgettable roles. Ferrer the director was not interested in this being simply a star vehicle for the actor. He got some great performances out of people like Dean Jagger as the network president, Keenan Wynn as the manager of the late Mr. Fuller and Ferrer's manager, Julie London as Fuller's ex-wife, a drunken washed up nightclub singer and Ed Wynn as the eccentric radio station owner where Fuller got his start.

Keenan Wynn is especially interested. He's working on one grand agenda of his own. He's as cynical a human being as has ever been portrayed on the big screen, but in a really key scene with Ferrer he puts the final kibosh to the legend of Herb Fuller and shows he's got a really good reason for his cynicism. It's one of Keenan Wynn's best moments on the big screen.

The Great Man has been compared to Citizen Kane and rightly so. Unlike Kane where those who are digging for the facts are bland and faceless with the accent on the recollections by the survivors of Charles Foster Kane and the portrait they create of Kane in their flashbacks. Here we have no flashbacks, the accent is on how Ferrer deals with them giving them the real story on the legend and what he will do with it. The following year Elia Kazan in A Face In The Crowd took a different approach. We see the legend of Lonesome Rhodes built up by Andy Griffith and how it destructs in the end with Patricia Neal seeing it as a public duty.

Citizen Kane, A Face In The Crowd, and The Great Man and for that matter The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance are all really about the same topic, the difference between public personalities and the private lives behind them. The Great Man for some reason has been sadly neglected unlike the other three films. That is a pity because it is a film with great performances and some interesting things to say.


4 of 4 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?