6.8/10
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53 user 13 critic

Keeper of the Flame (1942)

Not Rated | | Drama, Mystery | December 1942 (USA)
Journalist Steve O'Malley wants to write a biography of a national hero who died when his car ran off a bridge. Steve receives conflicting reports and tales that make him question what the truth about the hero is.

Director:

George Cukor

Writers:

I.A.R. Wylie (novel), Donald Ogden Stewart (screenplay)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Spencer Tracy ... Steven O'Malley
Katharine Hepburn ... Christine Forrest
Richard Whorf ... Clive Kerndon
Margaret Wycherly ... Mrs. Forrest
Forrest Tucker ... Geoffrey Midford
Frank Craven ... Dr. Fielding
Stephen McNally ... Freddie Ridges (as Horace McNally)
Percy Kilbride ... Orion Peabody
Audrey Christie ... Jane Harding
Darryl Hickman ... Jeb Rickards
Donald Meek ... Mr. Arbuthnot
Howard Da Silva ... Jason Rickards (as Howard da Silva)
William Newell ... Piggot
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Storyline

American military leader and war hero Robert Forrester, universally beloved and respected within the country and thus touted as Presidential material, has just died in a freak car accident on his sprawling estate, where, during an unexpected rainstorm, the car he was driving plunged over a ravine as he didn't notice the washed-out bridge. While the nation mourns, the national reporters descend on his small hometown to write the story of the incident. One reporter who won't is renowned Steven O'Malley, who wants instead to write an in-depth piece on the man to preserve his status within the public consciousness. Although happy to use official documents and records, O'Malley wants most specifically to speak to his wife, Christine Forrester, which may be a difficult task as she has refused to grant any interviews as a very private person. O'Malley is able to meet with Christine in person, and although she is reluctant to oblige his request at first, she is convinced by Robert's aide, ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

FIERY LOVE DRAMA! (original print ad - all caps) See more »

Genres:

Drama | Mystery

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

December 1942 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Die ganze Wahrheit See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,172,000 (estimated)

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$15,392
See more on IMDbPro »

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 »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This film received its initial television broadcast in New York City Monday 1 April 1957 on WCBS (Channel 2), followed by Hartfotd CT 6 April 1957 on WHCT (Channel 18), by Chicago 12 May 1957 on WBBM (Channel 2), by Syracuse 2 June 1957 on WHEN (Channel 8), by Phoenix 20 June 1957 on KPHO (Channel 5), by both Philadelphia and Chicago 9 July 1957 on WFIL (Channel 6) and on KING (Channel 5), by New Haven CT 23 July 1957 on WNHC (Channel 8), by Portland OR 28 July 1957 on KGW (Channel 8), by Altoona PA 11 August 1957 on WFBG (Channel 10), by Minneapolis 8 September 1957 on KMGM (Channel 9), and by Los Angeles 12 September 1957 on KTTV (Channel 11); in San Francisco it was first telecast 6 March 1959 on KGO (Channel 7). See more »

Goofs

Right after Old Mrs. Forrest complains about her son having been "stabbed in the back", she is shown with her hand at chest level. Immediately afterward, there is a cut to a wider shot, and her hand is down by her waist. See more »

Quotes

Doctor Fielding: Hero fever, I call it. Very modern. Ever since we've been getting out of touch with God, we've been pushovers for it. And the young get it the worst of all.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Scotty and the Secret History of Hollywood (2017) See more »

Soundtracks

Marcia Funebre
(uncredited)
from "Symphony No.3 in E Flat Major "Eroica", Op.55" (1806)
Music by Ludwig van Beethoven
played as background music during the funeral
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Most serious, intriguing Tracy / Hepburn film.
16 May 2005 | by SpaceComicsSee all my reviews

One of my favorite Spencer Tracy movies, Keeper of the Flame is probably the most serious of all the films teaming Tracy with Katherine Hepburn, perhaps the only one that might fit the "noir" class. Mystery surrounds the death of national hero Robert Forrest. Reporter Steve O'Malley (Tracy) wants to do a biography of the late statesman, but the closer he tries to get to the family on their huge estate (sort of a Gothic version of the Kennedy Compound), the more it seems Forrest's widow (Hepburn) and secretary are trying to hide something. Tracy begins to suspect their foul involvement in the hero's supposed accidental death. In addition to the great Tracy and Hepburn and an intriguing story, there are fine performances from the supporting cast which includes a young Forrest Tucker (Spencer, Tracy, and Kong), Darryl Hickman (Fighting Father Dunn), Howard da Silva (1776), Percy Kilbride (Pa Kettle), and others.


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