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Four Men and a Prayer (1938)

The sons of a disgraced British officer try to clear his name.

Director:

John Ford

Writers:

Richard Sherman (screenplay), Sonya Levien (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Loretta Young ... Miss Lynn Cherrington
Richard Greene ... Geoffrey Leigh
George Sanders ... Wyatt Leigh
David Niven ... Christopher Leigh
William Henry ... Rodney Leigh
C. Aubrey Smith ... Colonel Loring Leigh
J. Edward Bromberg ... General Torres (as Edward Bromberg)
Alan Hale ... Mr. Furnoy
John Carradine ... General Adolfo Arturios Gregario Sebastian
Reginald Denny ... Capt. Douglas Loveland
Berton Churchill ... Mr. Martin Cherrington
Barry Fitzgerald ... Trooper Mulcahay
Claude King ... Gen. Bryce
Cecil Cunningham ... Piper
Frank Dawson Frank Dawson ... Manders
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Storyline

Colonel Loring Leigh, British Indian Army, appears to have issued an order that cost 90 lives. Cashiered, he returns home, tells his sons of a conspiracy by an arms syndicate to supply the rebels...then is found dead, an apparent suicide. To clear their father, the four sons must globetrot in a hazardous search for evidence, closely followed by Geoffrey's sweetheart Lynn Cherrington. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

army | father | yacht | forger | sheik | See All (32) »

Genres:

Adventure | Mystery

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Spanish

Release Date:

29 April 1938 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Štirje osvetniki See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Twentieth Century Fox See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

The line "I knew a man named Trubshawe..." refers to a lifelong friend of Niven's, a source of references or character names in several of his films. See more »

Crazy Credits

Manders, the butler, is listed as Mullins in the credits. See more »

Connections

Remade as Fury at Furnace Creek (1948) See more »

Soundtracks

Londonderry Air (Danny Boy)
(uncredited)
Music (17th century) attributed to Rory Dall O'Cahan
Played on piano by Richard Greene
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Lively & Complicated
26 February 2006 | by Ron OliverSee all my reviews

It will take FOUR MEN AND A PRAYER to save an old colonel's reputation from disgrace.

Although its complicated plot is faintly ludicrous, this John Ford film offers plenty of action and some good acting to keep its viewers entertained. The production value is of a high order and there's a generous amount of heroics, which almost makes one forget that there's no really despicable villain to hiss.

Barrister George Sanders, diplomat Richard Greene, military pilot David Niven, and Oxford student William Henry are the English brothers who unite to find their father's murderer and clear his good name. All do a fine job with what the script gives them, constantly dashing about and acting terribly energetic, with young Henry more than keeping up with his three better known costars. Greene actually has top billing, but Niven gets the best lines, getting to leaven a good deal of humor into his performance.

Lovely Loretta Young does not fare so well. She's given the ridiculous role of a silly rich girl in love with Greene who follows him first from America to England, then on to Argentina and Egypt. Even witnessing a hideous massacre doesn't entirely sober her, as she begins to behave like a junior league Mata Hari to uncover information for the preternaturally patient Greene. One usually expects more than this from John Ford's heroines.

The rest of the large cast offers able support, however. Wonderful old Sir C. Aubrey Smith graces his brief role as the men's tragic father. Stalwart Reginald Denny plays a captain with too much information for his own good. Affable Alan Hale has fun with his role as a millionaire arms dealer. J. Edward Bromberg is a squalid little South American general and, in a tiny role, John Carradine plays his suave & dangerous enemy. Blustery Berton Churchill plays the powerful tycoon father of Miss Young's character, while bantam Barry Fitzgerald steals his few moments of screen time as a boisterous little Irishman ready for a good fight.


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