6.9/10
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30 user 17 critic

Four Daughters (1938)

Approved | | Drama, Music, Romance | 9 August 1938 (USA)
Adam Lemp, the Dean of the Briarwood Music Foundation, has passed on his love of music to his four early adult daughters - Thea, Emma, Kay and Ann - who live with him and his sister, the ... See full summary »

Director:

Michael Curtiz

Writers:

Julius J. Epstein (screen play), Lenore J. Coffee (screen play) (as Lenore Coffee) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
Nominated for 5 Oscars. Another 1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Claude Rains ... Adam Lemp
Jeffrey Lynn ... Felix Deitz
John Garfield ... Mickey Borden
Frank McHugh ... Ben Crowley
May Robson ... Aunt Etta
Gale Page ... Emma Lemp
Dick Foran ... Ernest
Vera Lewis ... Mrs. Ridgefield
Tom Dugan ... Jake
Eddie Acuff ... Sam
Donald Kerr Donald Kerr ... Earl
Priscilla Lane ... Ann Lemp
Rosemary Lane ... Kay Lemp
Lola Lane ... Thea Lemp
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Storyline

Adam Lemp, the Dean of the Briarwood Music Foundation, has passed on his love of music to his four early adult daughters - Thea, Emma, Kay and Ann - who live with him and his sister, the girls' Aunt Etta, in the long time family home. Of the four, Kay has the greatest promise as a musical performer, specifically as a singer. Theirs is a loving family, however much the girls exasperate their father with their love of popular music, since he loves only the classics, most specifically Beethoven. The girls support each other however they can, but each is an individual with her own distinct personality and wants, including the type of man each wants as a husband. Practical but deep in her heart romantic Emma has long been courted by their next door neighbor, unassuming florist Ernest Talbot, and clever Thea wants to be Mrs. Ben Crowley, he a wealthy up and coming banker with prospects. Only the youngest, the fun loving Ann, states that she doesn't want to get married. Their collective ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

FANNIE HURST'S great masterpiece becomes the most beloved picture of the year! "Superb" say the critics!

Genres:

Drama | Music | Romance

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | French

Release Date:

9 August 1938 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Fire døtre See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Warner Bros. See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

The character of Mickey Borden was written with Van Heflin in mind. See more »

Quotes

Mickey Borden: I wouldn't win first prize if I were the only entry in the contest.
Ann Lemp: Mathematically speaking, I think you'd stand a fine chance.
Mickey Borden: You think they'd let me win?
Ann Lemp: Who?
Mickey Borden: They.
Ann Lemp: Who?
Mickey Borden: The fates, the destinies, whoever they are that decide what we do or don't get.
Ann Lemp: What do you mean?
Mickey Borden: They've been at me now nearly a quarter of a century. No let-up. First they said, "Let him do without parents. He'll get along." Then they decided, "He doesn't need any education. That's for sissies." Then right at the beginning...
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Swingtime in the Movies (1938) See more »

Soundtracks

Wintermärchen
(1891) (uncredited)
Music by Alphons Czibulka
Played on the piano
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Much needed counterpoint
1 January 2005 | by mik-19See all my reviews

A tight-knit musical family, cranky-benevolent father and four vivacious adolescent daughters, is up-rooted by, first, the appearance of Felix, a dashing young composer, and, secondly and most profoundly, Mickey, his insolently attractive orchestrator friend.

It takes a while for Michael Curtiz to get this piece of Americana floating. The first part looks almost like a paraphrasing of a cereal commercial, not without a certain quaint, highly bourgeois charm, and then John Garfield enters the scene as the doomed Mickey, making his first appearance in motion pictures, with mussed-up black curls, sleepy, hung-over eyes, rude and disheveled, the absolute opposite to Jeffrey Lynn's smoothly persuasive, madly charming Felix. Garfield is in complete, and DIRELY needed, counterpoint to the rest of the household ("Nothing I would do would surprise me", he muses), and suddenly the movie becomes interesting, although I agree with critics that find the plot-turns insufficiently motivated.

The four sisters are rather blandly played and seriously underwritten, but Claude Rains as the pater familias has his moments.

Watch it for Garfield, though, he is the only really lasting thing about it.


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