7.1/10
1,229
16 user 12 critic

Wee Willie Winkie (1937)

Approved | | Adventure, Family | 30 July 1937 (USA)
Clip
1:19 | Clip

Watch Now

From $3.99 (SD) on Prime Video

ON DISC
Priscilla Williams, a young girl living with her widowed mother and paternal grandfather at the post he commands in northern India, becomes enamored of military life and embroiled in brewing rebellion against the crown in the early 1900's.

Director:

John Ford

Writers:

Ernest Pascal (screen play), Julien Josephson (screen play) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Comedy | Family | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A little girl named Star lives with a lighthouse keeper who rescued her when her parents drowned. A truant officer decides she should go to boarding school but she's rescued by relatives.

Director: David Butler
Stars: Shirley Temple, Guy Kibbee, Slim Summerville
Comedy | Drama | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Rebecca's Uncle Harry leaves her with Aunt Miranda who forbids her to associate with show people. But neighbor Anthony Kent is a talent scout who secretly set it up for her to broadcast.

Director: Allan Dwan
Stars: Shirley Temple, Randolph Scott, Jack Haley
Comedy | Drama | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Shirley Temple's father, a rebel officer, sneaks back to his rundown plantation to see his family and is arrested. A Yankee takes pity and sets up an escape. Everyone is captured and the ... See full summary »

Director: David Butler
Stars: Shirley Temple, John Boles, Jack Holt
Comedy | Drama | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Eddie Ellison is an ex-con who spent time in Sing-Sing prison. Kay marries him as soon as he serves his time. Five years later, Eddie and his ex-convict buddy Larry, have both gone straight... See full summary »

Director: Harry Lachman
Stars: Shirley Temple, James Dunn, Claire Trevor
Comedy | Family | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

After Southern belle Elizabeth Lloyd runs off to marry Yankee Jack Sherman, her father, a former Confederate colonel during the Civil War, vows to never speak to her again. Several years ... See full summary »

Director: David Butler
Stars: Shirley Temple, Lionel Barrymore, Evelyn Venable
Curly Top (1935)
Family | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Wealthy Edward Morgan becomes charmed with a curly-haired orphan and her pretty older sister Mary and arranges to adopt both under the alias of "Mr. Jones." As he spends more time with them, he soon finds himself falling in love with Mary.

Director: Irving Cummings
Stars: Shirley Temple, John Boles, Rochelle Hudson
Stowaway (1936)
Adventure | Family | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A young girl lost in Shanghai is taken in by an American playboy and his girlfriend.

Director: William A. Seiter
Stars: Shirley Temple, Robert Young, Alice Faye
Heidi (1937)
Drama | Family | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A plucky little orphan girl gets dumped abruptly into her gruff, hermit grandfather's care, then later gets retaken and delivered as a companion for an injured girl.

Director: Allan Dwan
Stars: Shirley Temple, Jean Hersholt, Arthur Treacher
Dimples (1936)
Family | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Dimples Appleby lives with the pick-pocket grandfather in 19th century New York City. She entertains the crowds while he works his racket. A rich lady makes it possible for the girl to go legit. "Uncle Tom's Cabin" is performed.

Director: William A. Seiter
Stars: Shirley Temple, Frank Morgan, Robert Kent
Bright Eyes (1934)
Comedy | Drama | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

An orphaned girl is taken in by a snobbish family at the insistence of their rich, crotchety uncle, even as her devoted aviator godfather fights for custody.

Director: David Butler
Stars: Shirley Temple, James Dunn, Jane Darwell
Adventure | Comedy | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

The daughter of a wealthy businessman becomes lost in the city while traveling to a new school, and is taken in by a pair of down-on-their-luck performers.

Director: Irving Cummings
Stars: Shirley Temple, Alice Faye, Gloria Stuart
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Drama | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Little Martha Jane, aka Little Miss Marker (Temple) is left with the bookmaker Sorrowful Jones by her dad as part of a bet on a horserace. Sorrowful (Menjou) and his group of fellow bookies... See full summary »

Director: Alexander Hall
Stars: Adolphe Menjou, Dorothy Dell, Charles Bickford
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Shirley Temple ... Priscilla Williams
Victor McLaglen ... Sgt. MacDuff
C. Aubrey Smith ... Col. Williams
June Lang ... Joyce Williams
Michael Whalen ... Coppy - Lt. Brandes
Cesar Romero ... Khoda Khan
Constance Collier ... Mrs. Allardyce
Douglas Scott ... Mott
Gavin Muir ... Capt. Bibberbeigh
Willie Fung ... Mohammet Dihn
Brandon Hurst ... Bagby
Lionel Pape Lionel Pape ... Maj. Allardyce
Clyde Cook ... Pipe Major Sneath
Bunny Beatty Bunny Beatty ... Elsie Allardyce (as Lauri Beatty)
Lionel Braham ... Maj. Gen. Hammond
Edit

Storyline

Priscilla Williams is a young girl traveling with her mother, Joyce, to join her paternal grandfather, a British army colonel, at the post he commands in northern India. Upon arrival, they witness the capture of Khoda Khan, leader of the rebel Indian faction. Priscilla plays at being a soldier and is even given a uniform and allowed to drill by the genial Sergeant MacDuff, but her gruff grandfather disapproves and insists she remain apart from the troops. She eventually charms him, along with everyone else on the post, including Khoda Khan, whom she wins over by returning a talisman he's dropped. When the attractive Lieutenant Brandes deserts his post to take Joyce to a dance, Khan escapes, and Brandes is arrested. As hostilities with the rebels mount, Priscilla and servant Mohammet Dihn --actually an Indian spy--take off for Khoda Khan's stronghold. Written by gavin (gunmasterM@hotmail.com)

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Adventure | Family

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

30 July 1937 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

La mascota del regimiento See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Twentieth Century Fox See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Noiseless Recording)

Color:

Black and White (sepiatone with blue tinted sequences)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The original story by Rudyard Kipling was about a boy, Percival Williams, but this was changed to a girl, Priscilla Williams, in order for Shirley Temple to play the role. See more »

Quotes

Sgt. Donald MacDuff: You made a very good beginning.
Priscilla Williams: Yes, but who ever head of a solider named Priscilla?
Sgt. Donald MacDuff: Aye, that's the point. You couldn't take Private Pricilla very seriously, could you? We'll have to find a new name for you.
[pauses]
Sgt. Donald MacDuff: I got it! I got it! Wee Willie Winkie.
Priscilla Williams: Wee Willie Winkie?
[They both laugh]
Priscilla Williams: Was he a friend of yours?
Sgt. Donald MacDuff: Nah, he was a lad in an old scotch rhyme. Wee Willie Winkie ran through the town... Wee Willie Winkie ran through the town... he ran through the... well,he was a lad who was always ...
See more »

Alternate Versions

Some reissue prints run 77 minutes. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The American West of John Ford (1971) See more »

Soundtracks

God Save the King!
(1744) (uncredited)
Music attributed to Henry Carey
Played in the score
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Bagpipes and War Guns
27 February 2009 | by lugonianSee all my reviews

WEE WILLIE WINKIE (20th Century-Fox, 1937), directed by Academy Award winning John Ford, stars Shirley Temple in possibly her most prestigious film of her career. Capitalizing on the current trend of military themes as THE LIVES OF A BENGAL LANCER (Paramount, 1935), THE CHARGE OF THE LIGHT BRIGADE (Warners, 1936), and later the most popular, Rudyard Kipling's GUNGA DIN (RKO, 1939), WEE WILLIE WINKIE, also authored by Kipling, fits well into this category. In spite of Temple's presence, high production values, fine support of Academy Award winning actor Victor McLaglen (RKO's THE INFORMER, 1935), and a well-scripted but leisurely-paced screenplay (by Ernest Pascal and Julian Josephson), WEE WILLIE WINKIE comes close to being overlooked item from cinema history.

With Temple's previous screen efforts typically casting her as an orphan or child of a widowed parents who occupies screen time solving problems with feel good intervals of song and dance, WEE WILLIE WINKIE is a welcome change of pace. While Temple doesn't have any real musical interludes, she does acquire one heartfelt moment worth mentioning where she sings "Auld Lang Syne" to a dying soldier. Of her two 1937 releases, HEIDI, based on the literary work by Johanna Spyri, appears to be most admired mainly because it gears mostly towards the interest of children while WEE WILLIE WINKIE appears to be more of a story for adults. Being the longest (99 minutes, though road show version was reportedly at 105 minutes) of Temple's feature length films of the 1930s, WEE WILLIE WINKIE contains more ingredients of a John Ford movie than Temple's. Regardless, the chemistry of both blends in nicely into the scenario. Temple would work under Ford again in FORT APACHE (RKO, 1948) with McLaglen in the supporting cast.  

Plot summary: The year is 1897. Joyce Williams (June Lang), a young widow unable to support herself and her daughter, Priscilla (Shirley Temple), in America, are sent by her father-in-law, Colonel Williams, to live with him on his British Army Base. Arriving by train to Raj Pore station in Northern India, they are greeted by Sergeant McDuff (Victor McLaglen) to escort them via coach to their destination. Before departure, Priscilla witnesses the arrest of Khonda Khan (Cesar Romero), the rebel leader responsible for the smuggling of guns belonging to her grandfather's regiment. Having dropped his sacred charm, Priscilla runs over return "the necklace" back to him. Khan, dangerous and handcuffed, shows gratitude towards this "strange child" as he is taken away by authorities. During her stay at the post, Priscilla meets Branders (Michael Whalen), a young lieutenant she calls "Coppy" (whose hair, as she described, shines like a copper penny). Feeling her grandfather (C. Aubrey Smith) doesn't like her McDuff, at Coppy's request, shows Priscilla the procedures on becoming a good soldier. Providing her a junior-sized uniform, much to the dismay of drummer boy, Mott (Douglas Scott), McDuff renames his little soldier, "Wee Willie Winkie." With an uprising leading to the prison escape of Khonda Khan and the death of Sergeant McDuff, war is officially declared, causing "Wee Willie Winkie" to try and make peace before any more men are killed.

While Temple dealt with grumpy grandfathers before, Lionel Barrymore being her best encounter in THE LITTLE COLONEL (1935), C. Aubrey Smith fits the bill as her military-minded grandfather with little time for his grandchild. Cesar Romero, believable as Konda Khan, gives a remarkable performance. He would assume another recognizable, but less threatening role, opposite Temple once more in THE LITTLE PRINCESS (1939). Military formation and the lives of British soldiers take precedence over the romantic subplot between June Lang and Michael Whalen that has been kept to a minimum. Others in the cast include Constance Collier (Mrs. Allardyce); Lauri Beatty (Elsa Allardyce, her daughter); Willie Fung (Mohammed Dihn); Brandon Hurst (Bagby); Lionel Pape (Major Allardyce); Mary Forbes (Mrs. MacMonachie), and John Ford regular, Jack Pennick, as one of the soldiers.

A successful film in its day, WEE WILLIE WINKIE was later reissued at 77 minutes, the print most commonly used on commercial television prior to 1985. It wasn't until around 1987 when WEE WILLIE WINKIE was available close to its theatrical length when distributed on home video. In recent years, the 99 minute version became available on numerous cable stations, including The Disney Channel (colorized, 1990s); American Movie Classics (1996-2000), The Fox Movie Channel and Turner Classic Movies (TCM premiere: July 13, 2015). It's availability on DVD contains the choice of both colorized and black and white formats.

While Temple may seem to be an unlikely candidate on a military base in far away India wanting to become a good little soldier, she's certainly one who hasn't lost her appeal in the rank as "Wee Willie Winkie." (***1/2)


12 of 12 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 16 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

IMDb Freedive: Watch Movies and TV Series for Free

Watch Hollywood hits and TV favorites for free with IMDb Freedive. Start streaming on IMDb and Fire TV devices today!

Start watching



Recently Viewed