6.7/10
915
16 user 6 critic

A Yank at Oxford (1938)

A brash young American aristocrat attending Oxford University gets a chance to prove himself and win the heart of his antagonist's sister.

Director:

Jack Conway

Writers:

Malcolm Stuart Boylan (screen play), Walter Ferris (screen play) | 5 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Robert Taylor ... Lee Sheridan
Lionel Barrymore ... Dan Sheridan
Maureen O'Sullivan ... Molly Beaumont
Vivien Leigh ... Elsa Craddock
Edmund Gwenn ... Dean of Cardinal
Griffith Jones ... Paul Beaumont
C.V. France ... Dean Snodgrass
Edward Rigby ... Scatters
Morton Selten ... Cecil Davidson, Esq.
Claude Gillingwater ... Ben Dalton
Tully Marshall ... Cephas
Walter Kingsford ... Dean Williams
Robert Coote ... Wavertree
Peter Croft Peter Croft ... Ramsey
Noel Howlett ... Tom Craddock
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Storyline

Lee Sheridan's ego has always been stoked by his newspaper publisher father, Dan Sheridan, who is willing to "hold the presses" solely to print Lee's many sporting accomplishments as they happen. Because he is as good as he says in those sporting accomplishments, Lee is generally well liked by his colleagues at Lakedale State College in his hometown of Lakedale despite that ego. It is because of those sporting feats that Lee is offered a scholarship to attend Oxford. Lee expects to be as welcomed at Oxford as he has been his entire life, but is slow to learn that his brash American sensibilities mean more to his staid Oxford classmates than his sporting accomplishments, that brashness which turns off the first three Oxford students he meets on the train. It is because of their rough treatment of him, especially by Paul Beaumont, that makes Lee reconsider his stay in England. Lee does decide to stay and make a name for himself in a good way, partly to impress Molly Beaumont, Paul's ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The Roving Romances Of A Two-Fisted American! See more »

Genres:

Drama | Romance | Sport

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English | Latin

Release Date:

18 February 1938 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Der Lausbub aus Amerika See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Jack Conway took over as director after Michael Balcon, who was to both produce and direct, quit after clashing with MGM chief Louis B. Mayer. Balcon stayed on as producer. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Romance of Celluloid (1937) See more »

Soundtracks

For He's a Jolly Good Fellow
(uncredited)
Traditional
Played by a student band in the parade to the station
See more »

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User Reviews

 
It would have been practically treasonous to make this same movie 3 years later
10 August 2012 | by calvinnmeSee all my reviews

This film is a humorous examination of the differences between American and British college youth just prior to WWII with an American take on the situation. Robert Taylor plays Lee Sheridan, an American who comes to Oxford to study and also to run track and field. He runs into difficulty with everything from the English driving on "the wrong side of the road" to the British valuing tradition and teamwork over rugged individualism. Not helping matters is that Lee is a swaggering over-confident albeit talented braggart by the standards of any nation. To complicate matters, Lee's chief rival on the track team is the brother of a girl (Maureen O'Sullivan) in whom Lee is romantically interested.

To make such an "American fish in British waters" film just three years later after the war broke out and the US and England were allies would have been practically a precode in the eyes of the censors, even though cultural differences are always a problem, especially where boisterous youths are involved. It's an enjoyable little film featuring a young Vivien Leigh as she was waiting to become Scarlett O'Hara, and some fine character actor work from Edmund Gwenn as a dean who is still lovable as always even though he is openly contemptuous of Lee whose forward ways leave him shocked and flustered.


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