IMDb > The Nun's Story (1959)
The Nun's Story
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The Nun's Story (1959) More at IMDbPro »

Photos (See all 50 | slideshow) Videos (see all 2)
The Nun's Story -- A young woman enters the convent and cares for the indigent, but as World War II breaks out, her free spirit and hatred for the enemy make her question her calling to God.
The Nun's Story -- Audrey Hepburn stars as an ex-nun in this trailer for the drama

Overview

User Rating:
7.6/10   6,379 votes »
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Director:
Writers:
Robert Anderson (screenplay)
Kathryn Hulme (book)
Contact:
View company contact information for The Nun's Story on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
18 July 1959 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
Her Faith Remained Strong and True in the Face of Africa's Terrors! See more »
Plot:
After leaving a wealthy Belgian family to become a nun, Sister Luke struggles with her devotion to her vows during crisis, disappointment, and World War II. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Awards:
Nominated for 8 Oscars. Another 14 wins & 12 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
A Memorable, Worthwhile Classic See more (81 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

Audrey Hepburn ... Sister Luke (Gabrielle van der Mal)

Peter Finch ... Dr. Fortunati

Edith Evans ... Rev. Mother Emmanuel (Belgium) (as Dame Edith Evans)

Peggy Ashcroft ... Mother Mathilde (Africa) (as Dame Peggy Ashcroft)

Dean Jagger ... Dr. Van Der Mal

Mildred Dunnock ... Sister Margharita (Mistress of Postulants)

Beatrice Straight ... Mother Christophe (Sanatorium)
Patricia Collinge ... Sister William (convent teacher)
Rosalie Crutchley ... Sister Eleanor

Ruth White ... Mother Marcella (School of Medicine)

Barbara O'Neil ... Mother Didyma (War-time Hospital)
Margaret Phillips ... Sister Pauline (medical student)

Patricia Bosworth ... Simone (postulant who changed her mind)

Colleen Dewhurst ... Archangel Gabriel (Sanatorium)
Stephen Murray ... Chaplain (Father Andre)

Lionel Jeffries ... Dr. Goovaerts (School of Tropical Medicine)
Niall MacGinnis ... Father Vermeuhlen (Leprosarium)
Eva Kotthaus ... Sister Marie (Sanatorium)
Molly Urquhart ... Sister Augustine (Africa)
Dorothy Alison ... Sister Aurelie (martyred nurse, Africa)
Jeanette Sterke ... Louise (sister of Gabrielle) (as Jeannette Sterke)
Errol John ... Illunga (African convert)
Diana Lambert ... Lisa (the Resistance)
Orlando Martins ... Kalulu (African servant)
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Elsa Albani ... (uncredited)
Gabriella Andreini ... (uncredited)
Juan Aymerich ... (uncredited)
Ludovice Bonhomme ... Bishop (uncredited)
Grazia De Rossi ... (uncredited)
Giovanna Galletti ... (uncredited)
Dara Gavin ... Sister Ellen (uncredited)
Penelope Horner ... Jeanette Milonet (uncredited)
Irene Labhart ... (uncredited)
Charles Lamb ... Pascin (uncredited)
Ave Ninchi ... Sister Bernard (uncredited)
Richard O'Sullivan ... Pierre (brother of Gabrielle) (uncredited)
Elfride Simbari ... Sister Timothy (uncredited)
Frank Singuineau ... Murderer of Sister Aurelie (uncredited)
Marina Wolkonsky ... Marie (sister of Gabrielle) (uncredited)

Directed by
Fred Zinnemann 
 
Writing credits
Robert Anderson (screenplay)

Kathryn Hulme (book) (as Kathryn C. Hulme)

Produced by
Henry Blanke .... producer
Fred Zinnemann .... producer (uncredited)
 
Original Music by
Franz Waxman 
 
Cinematography by
Franz Planer (director of photography)
 
Film Editing by
Walter Thompson 
 
Art Direction by
Alexandre Trauner  (as Alexander Trauner)
 
Set Decoration by
Maurice Barnathan 
 
Costume Design by
Marjorie Best 
 
Makeup Department
Alberto De Rossi .... makeup artist
Grazia De Rossi .... hair stylist
 
Production Management
Julien Derode .... production manager: for Belgium and Congo
Chuck Hansen .... production manager (as Charles Hansen)
Orazio Tassara .... production manager: for Italy
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Bernard Vorhaus .... assistant director (as Piero Mussetta)
Sam Zebba .... second unit director
Sergio Leone .... assistant director (uncredited)
 
Art Department
Italo Tomassi .... manager of art department (uncredited)
 
Sound Department
Oliver S. Garretson .... sound
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Goffredo Bellisario .... camera operator (uncredited)
Léo L. Fuchs .... still photographer (uncredited)
 
Music Department
Franz Waxman .... conductor
 
Other crew
Stanley Browne .... technical advisor (uncredited)
Christian Ferry .... location manager (uncredited)
Marie-Louise Habets .... technical advisor (uncredited)
Elaine Schreyeck .... script supervisor (uncredited)
 
Crew verified as complete


Distributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
149 min
Country:
Language:
Color:
Color (Technicolor)
Aspect Ratio:
1.78 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (RCA Sound Recording)
Certification:
Argentina:13 | Brazil:12 | Canada:PG (Ontario) | Finland:K-16 | Sweden:15 | UK:U | UK:PG (tv rating) | USA:Not Rated | USA:TV-PG (TV rating) | USA:Approved (certificate #18979) | West Germany:12 (nf)
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

Trivia:
A patient in the Congo hospital has lines in just one scene; when it was necessary to dub over his line, it was spoken by Dean Jagger.See more »
Goofs:
Miscellaneous: When the patient in the Congo hospital is being attended by several people, the voice of the actor playing the patient is obviously dubbed over by actor Dean Jagger, who plays Sister Luke's father in the film.See more »
Quotes:
[first lines]
Narrator:"He that shall lose his life for me shall find it. If thou wilt be perfect, go sell what thou hast and give to the poor, and come follow me." Each sister shall understand that on entering the convent, she has made the sacrifice of her life to God.
See more »
Movie Connections:

FAQ

Where did Sister Luke go after she left the convent?
What is a "dowry"?
Why was Sister Aurelie beaten to death?
See more »
23 out of 36 people found the following review useful.
A Memorable, Worthwhile Classic, 3 November 2004
Author: Snow Leopard from Ohio

This memorable, worthwhile classic features Audrey Hepburn, who does very well in a rather atypical role, plus an involved, interesting story that contains quite a bit of thoughtful material. Fred Zinnemann tells the story well, effectively highlighting many good dramatic moments, and maintaining the balance among the many rather weighty themes of the movie. Because of the challenge involved in keeping the story interesting and even-handed, it's really more of an achievement than some of Zinnemann's better-known films.

The atmosphere is consistently believable, from the convent scenes to the mission settings to the hospital settings. Sometimes scenic, sometimes grim, they provide a fine backdrop for the story and characters.

Hepburn is very effective in a role that allows her to work with a good range of dramatic material and a good variety of other characters. Many of the other characters are interesting in themselves, and the supporting cast features some fine talent even in some of the smaller roles. The parade of other persons in and out of Sister Luke's life works very effectively, both in developing her character and in depicting what her chosen lifestyle is like.

The story is completely serious, yet never overly heavy, and it treats the characters and their beliefs respectfully - quite a rarity in films that deal with subjects like religion, war, and relations between different cultures. Perhaps the nature of the material will not seem interesting to many viewers - especially those jaded by a continual diet of the comic book-quality characters in present-day movies - but it is a most thoughtfully made and worthwhile film.

Was the above review useful to you?
See more (81 total) »

Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for The Nun's Story (1959)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
mh hospital/steam tubs dharvestmoon
Nun gets sick; has to drink beer. Why ? cbee-1
dowery?? laurajanelinton
Lesbian relationship after leaving the convent realtormiles
When the hair is cut... Frances_Kubelik
An interesting retrospective on being a nun Figaro14
See more »

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