7.1/10
1,922
35 user 8 critic

The Citadel (1938)

Passed | | Drama | 29 October 1938 (USA)
Trailer
4:35 | Trailer
An enthusiastic young doctor happily embarks on his career, but it isn't long before he finds out what being a doctor really entails.

Director:

King Vidor

Writers:

Ian Dalrymple (screen play), Frank Wead (screen play) | 3 more credits »
Reviews
Nominated for 4 Oscars. Another 5 wins. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Robert Donat ... Andrew Manson
Rosalind Russell ... Christine Barlow Manson
Ralph Richardson ... Denny
Rex Harrison ... Dr. Lawford
Emlyn Williams ... Owen
Penelope Dudley-Ward ... Toppy LeRoy (as Penelope Dudley Ward)
Francis L. Sullivan ... Ben Chenkin (as Francis Sullivan)
Mary Clare ... Mrs. Orlando
Cecil Parker ... Charles Every
Nora Swinburne ... Mrs. Thornton
Edward Chapman ... Joe Morgan
Athene Seyler ... Lady Raebank
Felix Aylmer ... Mr. Boon
Joyce Bland Joyce Bland ... Nurse Sharp
Percy Parsons Percy Parsons ... Mr. Stillman
Edit

Storyline

Andrew Manson (Robert Donat), a young, enthusiastic doctor takes his first job in a Welsh mining town, and begins to wonder at the persistent cough many of the miners have. When his attempts to prove its cause are thwarted, he moves to London. His new practice does badly. But when a friend shows him how to make a lucrative practice from rich hypochondriacs, it will take a great shock to show him what the truth of being a doctor really is. Written by Kathy Li

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Secrets of a doctor as told by a doctor! See more »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Elizabeth Allan was announced as leading lady, and sued M.G.M. when she was replaced by Rosalind Russell. See more »

Goofs

When Andrew examines Christine's throat, he sits in front of a light that is supposedly reflected into Christine's mouth by his eyepiece. We see this from over Andrew's shoulder, and when the light is directed into her mouth, it is clearly coming from behind Andrew, because the back of his eyepiece is illuminated. See more »

Quotes

Christine Barlow Manson: Andrew, Do you remember once telling me that a all good research man needed was a notebook, a microscope and a room with a roof over it?
See more »

Crazy Credits

This motion picture is a story of individual characterizations and is in no way intended as a reflection on the great medical profession which has done so much towards beating back those forces of nature that retard the physical progress of the human race. See more »

Alternate Versions

Also shown in computer colorized version. See more »

Connections

Version of The Citadel (1960) See more »

User Reviews

One of the better British films of the 'thirties
27 April 2003 | by jandesimpsonSee all my reviews

"The Citadel" is one of those circular morality fables - idealistic young man sets out full of good intentions to put the world to right, but, finding his dreams dashed by prejudice and ignorance, throws in his lot with the protection of an easy but dishonest life only to realise the error of his ways through personal tragedy with consequent redemption. A;though stylistically and culturally a world apart, it is thematically a precursor of Mizoguchi's "Sansho Dayu". Made in great Britain in 1938, its MGM backing certainly shows in higher production values than most home grown films of the period - and this in spite of much reliance on back projection of the sort that even the great Carol Reed could not always effectively disguise. One of Hollywood's top directors, King Vidor, invests it with visual quality and, in a part that could have been tailored for Greer Garson, Rosalind Russell makes a surprisingly convincing female lead, supporting the hero throughout his tribulations with every ounce of Garsonian understanding he needs. But it is Robert Donat as the idealistic doctor, who first tries his professional hand in the dark Welsh colliery valley, that is the film's greatest strength. Here was an actor who brought a sense of dignity and integrity to every role he undertook from the earliest Richard Hannay to the Chinese nobleman in "The Inn of the Sixth Happiness" which he was brave enough to play when he was literally gasping for breath. His performance in "The Citadel" is not entirely free from cliché but I imagine this was something imposed by the conventions of the period. How else to explain that when he becomes mean and mercenary he suddenly sports a very short and unsympathetic moustache which, if memory serves me right, miraculously disappears for the final scene of redemption. For the rest there is a galaxy of British acting talent to be found among the supporting roles with a brief glimpse of the dignified Nora Swinburne and a few more of a youthful Francis L. Sullivan doing his obese bigot stuff with rather less brains than usual. And as if this was not all, there is "Sexy Rexy" Harrison gracing the Harley Street scene, Cecil Parker playing a particularly odious surgeon who would no doubt be struck off the Medical Register if he were around today and the great Ralph Richardson investing the role of Donat's best friend with just about the right amount of Shakespearean rhetoric that the part will support. All in all a veritable treat provided you suspend just a little bit of disbelief.


34 of 37 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 35 user reviews »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
Edit

Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

29 October 1938 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

La ciudadela See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Contribute to This Page



Recently Viewed