The Power and the Prize (1956)

Approved  |   |  Drama  |  1957 (Austria)
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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 »



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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.

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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
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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 »


Elia Everett: You dimwit, the doorbell is ringing. The doorbell is ringing! You... you turned off your hearing aid on me! You did it again!
[Throws her drink in his face]
Elia Everett: You turned your hearing aid off on me! The kind of guy that turns his hearing aid off on his own wife! You stupid... Oh, Mr. Barton!
See more »

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User Reviews

just okay
23 January 2007 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Robert Taylor has to evaluate "The Power and the Prize," a 1956 film also starring Elisabeth Mueller, Burl Ives, Mary Astor and Sir Cedric Hardwicke. Taylor plays Cliff Barton, second in command to George Salt (Burl Ives) - he's also engaged to marry Salt's niece. Assigned to close a difficult deal in England, Cliff is unhappy about his boss' instructions, but tries to carry them out anyway. Salt wants him to withhold part of their demands until the very end of the negotiation. He warns Salt that doing things his way will blow this important deal, but Salt insists.

While in London and checking on a charity for Mrs. Salt, Cliff meets a German refugee, Miriam Linka (Mueller). They fall in love, and Cliff wants to marry her. Meanwhile, sure enough, the deal is blown, and Salt blames Cliff. Complicating things is Cliff's cancellation of the wedding (though his bride-to-be is just as happy about it as he is) and some nasty rumors that have been circulated about Miriam. Back at the office, it appears there is going to be a power struggle.

This is a grand MGM drama about conscience and following what you know to be honest and right versus just "following orders." There are some good moments, but all in all, it's pretty routine. The character of Miriam seems off the wall, lecturing Cliff as soon as he walks into her agency. Mueller in fact gives a very hyperactive performance which isn't a good match with Taylor's deliberate, steady portrayal. For me, the best acting comes from Charles Coburn as one of the officers in Salt's company and Mary Astor as Salt's wife. Sir Cedric Hardwicke, who has such a magnificent speaking voice, is excellent but alas, it's neither a big role nor a showy one.

Certainly not a bad movie but all of these actors have appeared in better.

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