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The Story of Louis Pasteur (1936)

Passed | | Biography, Drama, History | February 1936 (USA)
The biography of the pioneering French microbiologist who helped revolutionize agriculture and medicine.

Director:

William Dieterle

Writers:

Sheridan Gibney (story and screenplay), Pierre Collings (story and screenplay)
Reviews
Won 3 Oscars. Another 2 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Paul Muni ... Louis Pasteur
Josephine Hutchinson ... Marie Pasteur
Anita Louise ... Annette Pasteur
Donald Woods ... Dr. Jean Martel
Fritz Leiber ... Dr. Charbonnet
Henry O'Neill ... Dr. Emile Roux
Porter Hall ... Dr. Rossignol
Raymond Brown Raymond Brown ... Dr. Radisse
Akim Tamiroff ... Dr. Zaranoff
Halliwell Hobbes ... Dr. Lister
Frank Reicher ... Dr. Pfeiffer
Dickie Moore ... Joseph Meister
Ruth Robinson Ruth Robinson ... Mrs. Meister
Walter Kingsford ... Napoleon III
Iphigenie Castiglioni Iphigenie Castiglioni ... Empress Eugénie
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Storyline

In 1860 Paris, chemist Louis Pasteur is considered a quack within the medical community for advocating that doctors and surgeons wash their hands and boil their instruments to destroy microbes that can kill their patients. He came across this belief when discovering microscopic organisms in sour wine, the organisms which could be killed if heated sufficiently. The belief among the scientific community at large is that the organisms are the result of disease and not the cause. This belief is despite the fact that thirty percent of women die in childbirth due to child bed disease, accounting for twenty thousand annual deaths in Paris alone. The debate takes Pasteur all the way to a meeting with Emperor Napoleon III and his physician, Dr. Charbonnet, who is one of the leading opponents of Pasteur. Several years later - France now a republic - much of Pasteur's reputation changes as a government sanctioned experiment with anthrax and sheep shows that a vaccine created by Pasteur proves ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | French | Russian

Release Date:

February 1936 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Louis Pasteur See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Warner Bros. See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(Turner library print)

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This film's earliest documented telecasts took place in Cincinnati Sunday 29 July 1956 on WKRC (Channel 12), in Tucson Monday 30 July 1956 on KDWI (Channel 9), in Phoenix Thursday 23 August 1956 on KVAR (Channel 12), in Salt Lake City Friday 7 September 1956 on KUTV (Channel 2), in Boston Thursday 13 September 1956 on WBZ (Channel 4), in Indianapolis Sunday 11 November 1956 on WISH (Channel 8), and in Miami Sunday 30 December 1956 on WTVJ (Channel 4). See more »

Goofs

In the movie Pasteur's daughter Annette marries Matel. In actual fact Pasteur did not have any daughter by the name of Annette, her name was Marie Louise Pasteur,and she married René Vallery-Radot. See more »

Quotes

[about Pasteur]
Dr. Charbonnet: You remember a few years ago, he was the cause of a slight controversy on the subject of sour wine.
Napoleon III: Oh, yes, I recall.
Dr. Charbonnet: He claimed to have found little animals in it... infinitesimal beasts.
Napoleon III: But are there such creatures? Do they really exist?
Dr. Charbonnet: Your Majesty, microscopic organisms have long been observed. They spring into being of their own accord wherever there is putrid matter or fermentation. They are the result rather than the cause of disease. By heating wine to certain ...
[...]
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Connections

Featured in Breakdowns of 1936 (1936) See more »

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User Reviews

 
"Find the microbe...Kill the microbe."
11 October 2009 | by moonspinner55See all my reviews

In 19th century France, a ridiculed chemist branching out into medicine is called a charlatan by Europe's most prestigious doctors, even after he finds a vaccine for anthrax in sheep; next, he tackles hydrophobia in dogs, then humans. Medical history, compressed and simplified for the sake of popular entertainment, but no less rewarding for it. Paul Muni gives an impressive, Oscar-winning performance as Louis Pasteur, so fiercely dedicated to his findings and the results they receive, he drives himself to a partial stroke. One might think Pasteur as a family man might be difficult to live with, yet his loved ones merely beam and glow with pride, as does the opposition (seen as ego-fed and pig-headed) once Pasteur's experiments pay off. It's an awfully brief biography at just 85 minutes, yet it certainly has charm and moments of solid drama. **1/2 from ****


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