Teacher B.T. Cates is arrested for teaching Darwin's theories. Famous lawyer Henry Drummond defends him; fundamentalist politician Matthew Brady prosecutes. This is a very thinly disguised rendition of the 1925 "Scopes monkey trial" with debates between Clarence Darrow and William Jennings Bryan taken largely from the transcripts. Written by
Ed Stephan <firstname.lastname@example.org>
The buzz about Fredric March's and Spencer Tracy's performances spread around the studio lot and Hollywood to the point that a lot of extras made their way to the set just to see the action. In one instance, the extras were applauding so much at one of March's dramatic speeches that they ruined the take by not waiting until the end. See more »
When Drummond is inquiring about the story of Jonah, he flips to a book mark towards the end of the Bible and opens it. The Job story is in the Old Testament, but the section Drummond flips to would be towards the end of the New Testament. See more »
He said that men sort of evo-luted from Old World monkeys.
Matthew Harrison Brady:
Do you hear that, friends? Old World monkeys! According to Bertram Cates, we don't even descend from good American monkeys!
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People like to comment on this film's "overacting". Try watching any of Joan Crawford's movies from this period and then get back to me. Inherit the Wind is a totally compelling story of the traditional school of thought versus a new scientific one. It centers on a small southern town coming to terms with Darwinism and its implications on Christianity. Spencer Tracy is an eloquent defense lawyer fighting to let evolution stay in the public schools. The script is quite good. The court room exchanges are thought provoking and moving especially when one knows about the real people and events behind the story. It's very difficult to come up with a criticism here. Not a weak performance to be seen.
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