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The Power and the Prize (1956)

Approved | | Drama | 1957 (Austria)
This melodrama starring Robert Taylor and Burl Ives was directed by Henry Koster. An American business executive working in England wants to marry European refugee Elizabeth Mueller, but he... See full summary »



(novel), (screenplay)

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »


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Complete credited cast:
Cliff Barton
Elisabeth Müller ...
Miriam Linka (as Elisabeth Mueller)
George Salt
Guy Eliot
Mr. Carew (as Sir Cedric Hardwicke)
Mrs. George Salt
Niki Dantine ...
Joan Salt (as Nicola Michaels)
Cameron Prud'Homme ...
Reverend John Barton (as Cameron Prud'homme)
Lester Everett
Ben Wright ...
Mr. Chutwell
Jack Raine ...
Mr. Pitt-Semphill
Thomas Browne Henry ...
Paul F. Farragut
Howard Carruthers


This melodrama starring Robert Taylor and Burl Ives was directed by Henry Koster. An American business executive working in England wants to marry European refugee Elizabeth Mueller, but he is warned by his boss that such things just aren't done. Taylor digs in his heels and eventually finds support from his less hidebound fellow executives. The film was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Costume Design and was the first feature-length movie in black-and-white CinemaScope.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis






Approved | See all certifications »




Release Date:

1957 (Austria)  »

Also Known As:

Die Macht und ihr Preis  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


In the first scene of London, the double decker bus footage is back-to-front. All the writing on the buses and advertisements can be seen in the mirror image of what they should be. See more »


Lester Everett: I never knew a woman before who could work a slide-rule.
See more »

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User Reviews

A Superior Film of Ideas From MGM; a Very Capable Drama
20 June 2005 | by See all my reviews

This is a very "glossy" film in some ways, but it is also filled with well-developed characters. And because they are all well-acted and clearly presented in a dual-stranded storyline, they become very contexted and hard-to-forget. The script is by Robert Ardrey adapted from Howard Swiggett's fine novel. This is a another postwar film like many others that talks about values, and the sort of place the US needs to become--or unfortunately seemed to be becoming. The main characters in this plot are involved with a major international firm; the head of this firm, ably played by Burl Ives, is trying to consummate a deal with a British firm's leaders headed by Cedric Hardwicke. He also has a scheme in mind to cheat his partners, which finally does not sit well with his heir-apparent, played quite intelligently and straightforwardly by Robert Taylor. Complicating the plot for Taylor is his growing regard for a refugee played beautifully by Elisabeth Mueller. An act of courage by Taylor finally resolves the plot nicely; the moral crisis of the film becomes its climax, which gives it unusual power. The cast is very good indeed, with Mueller, Hardwicke, Ben Wright, Richard Erdmann and others also turning in very fine work. The film is B/W as a drama should be, and its values are very fine, thanks to work by MGM's best--Edwin Willis, Sidney Guilaroof and costumer Helen Rose. Music is by Bronislau Kaper with the director, Henry Koster, doing a first-rate job in a film featuring many interior-scenes and little outdoor work. Films about business are one way thinkers have of examining what is right and wrong with the United States' citizens approaches to making their constitutional ideas about individualism work; this work, except for the religious connections of Taylor's father, in my judgment a needless addition, is honest. I cannot recommend this unexpected little gem too highly.

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