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The Sins of Rachel Cade (1961)

Approved | | Drama, Romance | 2 April 1961 (USA)
While the Nazis regime subjugates European Nations, in Belgian Congo the doctor Rachel Cade tries to cure those troubled people. The colonel Derode falls in love with her but a young American injured pilot upsets his plans.



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Cast overview:
Rachel Cade
Colonel Henry Derode
Paul Wilton
Errol John ...
Kulu, Assistant to Rachel
Juano Hernandez ...
Frederick O'Neal ...
Marie Grieux
Charles Wood ...
Douglas Spencer ...
Doctor Bikel


In 1939, earnest missionary nurse Rachel Cade travels to the Belgian Congo but she no sooner arrives than Dr. Bikel, who runs the local hospital where she is to work, dies of heart failure. She also soon learns that the hospital has been a failure and has yet to treat a single patient. Slowly, Rachel gains the trust of the villagers, not only providing medical care but preaching the gospel. The local government official, middle-aged Col. Henri Derode, doesn't quite hit it off with Rachel at first but soon begins to develop deep affections for her. The sexually repressed Rachel however has fallen madly in love with the dashing Capt. Paul Winton, a American serving in the RAF, who is shot down and is also a medical doctor. Her moralizing comes back to haunt her when she learns after his departure that she is pregnant. Written by garykmcd

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In the 'Nun's Story' tradition ... From Kansas she came, the beautiful missionary, burning with the fire of her faith ... and she found a wilder flame in primeval Africa! See more »


Drama | Romance


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Release Date:

2 April 1961 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Amartoloi kato apo ton ilio  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)



Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?


Rachel Cade: There's no date on morality. We're not exactly in a state of grace.
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User Reviews

Enjoyable as well colorful film about a dedicated religious nurse who attempts to cure troubled people in the Belgian Congo
29 April 2014 | by (Santander Spain) – See all my reviews

The melancholy tale from the Charles Mercer book dealing with a young missionary working as a nurse during WWII . In 1939, while the Nazi regime subjugates European Nations Rachel Cade (enticing Angie Dickinson) travels to the Belgian Congo , her assignment in the Congo is at a European hospital under the atheist eye of a Colonel but she no sooner arrives than Dr. Bikel, who runs the installation where she is to work, dies of heart failure . She is also soon aware that the hospital has been a misfire and has yet to treat an only patient . Slowly , Rachel Cade heals ills , helps injured villagers and preaches Gospel . There the local government Col. Henry (tough but tenderheart Peter Finch) falls hard while she resists his advances and a subsequent lover upsets his schemes . The sexually repressed and frigid Rachel however has fallen madly in love with Paul (sympathetic Roger Moore) , who is a surgeon shot down . When medical doctor Paul has a plane crash , he is meticulously healed by Rachel . Both of them gradually revealing their pasts each other , but earnest Rachel is influenced by her lover to leave the hospital to go America , then Rachel comes to question her vocation . But the Nazis rise to power and invade her homeland and Africa .

Director Gordon Douglas struck a correct balance of pace and sensitivity in the absorbing tale of a young Belgian girl who becomes a religious missionary and is sent to the Belgian Congo to work at a hospital . She is struggling to reconcile her free spirit and philanthropic wishes with the religious rigors . There Rachel questions her religious vocation and her moralizing comes back to haunt her when she learns after his departure that she is pregnant . Finely starred by a luminous Angie Dickinson who chalked up another hit in this long but always interesting flick based on Charles Mercer's novel , being rightly adapted by prestigious Edward Anhalt . This agreeable flick packs an exciting screenplay , intense drama , fine interpretations and intelligent filmmaking . Casting is frankly well . Good acting by Angie Dickinson as a beautiful missionary nurse who gains the trust of the local people , not only providing medical care but preaching the Bible ; Peter Finch as middle-aged local government official Colonel Henri Derode , he doesn't quite hit it off with Rachel at first but soon starts to develop deep affections for her ; and an attractive as well as likable Roger Moore as dashing Capt. Paul Winton , an American serving in the RAF . Furthermore , a nice support cast formed by notorious African-American secondaries such as Woody Strode as Muwango , Juano Hernandez as Kalanumu , Rafer Johnson as Kosongo , Scatman Crothers as Musinga and veteran Mary Wickes ,subsequently famous for her role in ¨Sister act¨ . This film follows the wake of the highly acclaimed ¨Nun's story¨ also starred by Peter Finch that consolidated a sub-genre about nuns or religious people in far countries , going on ¨Heaven knows , Mr Allison¨ with Robert Mitchum Deborah Kerr and ¨A Nun at the Crossroads¨ with Rosanna Schiaffino and John Richardson , among others .

Appropriate as well as sensitive musical score by the classic Max Steiner . Glamorous and evocative cinematography by J. Marley , though mostly filmed on studio . The motion picture well produced by Henry Blanke was professionally directed by Gordon Douglas. This is one of various and pleasant works , some major and minor successes of his long career as a filmmaker. He was a Hollywood veteran director, directing early movies (Little rascals, Spanky), expert on Western (Chuka, Rio Conchos, Yellowstone Kelly, Only the valiant), and usually worked for Frank Sinatra in various films (Lady in Cement, Tony Rome, The detective , Robin and the 7 Hoods) . Rating : 6 , acceptable and passable , though overlong . The film will appeal to Angie Dickinson and Roger Moore fans .

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