The Young Lions (1958)

Approved  |   |  Action, Drama, War  |  2 April 1958 (USA)
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Reviews: 62 user | 20 critic

The destiny of three soldiers during World War II. The German officer Christian Diestl approves less and less of the war. Jewish-American Noah Ackerman deals with antisemitism at home and ... See full summary »



(screenplay), (novel)
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Nominated for 3 Oscars. Another 1 win & 4 nominations. See more awards »
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Complete credited cast:
Noah Ackerman
Michael Whiteacre
Hope Plowman
Margaret Freemantle
Gretchen Hardenberg
Capt. Hardenberg
Dora Doll ...
1st Sgt. Rickett
Liliane Montevecchi ...
Sgt. Brandt
Arthur Franz ...
Lt. Green
Hal Baylor ...
Pvt. Burnecker
Richard Gardner ...
Pvt. Crowley
Herbert Rudley ...
Capt. Colclough


The destiny of three soldiers during World War II. The German officer Christian Diestl approves less and less of the war. Jewish-American Noah Ackerman deals with antisemitism at home and in the army while entertainer Michael Whiteacre transforms from playboy to hero. Written by Mattias Thuresson

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Irwin Shaw's monumental best-seller See more »


Action | Drama | War


Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





| |

Release Date:

2 April 1958 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Die jungen Löwen  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$3,000,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)|

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


This movie is credited as being a comeback movie for Dean Martin after his split with Jerry Lewis. See more »


While Vaughn Taylor (the actor who plays Hope Lange's character's father) is walking around his Brooklyn neighborhood showing Noah Ackerman the Plowman family's long connection to the area, Mr Plowman is speaking in what sounds to my ear as a southern accent. If his roots go very far back in Brooklyn shouldn't he sound more like a Brooklynite or a New Yorker, at the very least. See more »


Draft Board Physician: You know, for a man your age, you're in excellent health. How do you manage it?
Michael Whiteacre: Clean liquor.
See more »


Referenced in The Rat Pack (1998) See more »


Das Lied der Deutschen
aka "Deutschland Uber Alles" or "Das Deutschlandlied"
Music by Joseph Haydn
Lyrics by August Heinrich Hoffman von Fallersleben
Sung at the party in Bavaria
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

A Fine Cinema Experience
1 April 2000 | by (Connecticut) – See all my reviews

A long time ago, some time before the powers that be decided that movies should be made only to extricate money from children by catering to their base instincts and in so doing destroy our civility, the American Cinema was devoted to the art and craft of story telling. In these stories, life was often celebrated through the study of the character of the human heart.

In THE YOUNG LIONS, we experience masterful story writing in the screenplay by a man named Edward Anhalt who adapted it from a novel by Irwin Shaw. In this fine example of the final years of the Golden Age of Hollywood we see a study of character, ideas and humanity seen amidst the greatest conflict this Earth has ever known, WWII.

Here, we experience both the Americans and Europeans, including Germans. They are played as they really were, not as depicted by latter day directors such as Steven Spielberg and others who have drawn WWII Germans as silhouette, cartoon characters, all vile and evil. Here, they are shown as singular human beings with personalities, hopes and dreams really exactly like our own. The opposing forces are caught up in a madness that somehow swept across the face of this planet at a specific time, when really probed, for reasons quite unfathomable. This was also one of the peak film renderings of Marlon Brando, whom some feel is one of the finest actors ever to have graced the silver screen.

If you yearn for a fulfilling example of American Cinema at a time when it was a serious, respected industry, this is one for you to see.

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