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The Sun Comes Up (1949)

Approved | | Drama, Family, Musical | 12 May 1949 (USA)
Set in the rural south of the United States, a bereaved war widow learns to to put aside her bitterness and grief as she grows to love a young orphan boy and the dog that belonged to her ... See full summary »


Richard Thorpe

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Cast overview:
Jeanette MacDonald ... Helen Lorfield Winter
Lloyd Nolan ... Thomas I. Chandler
Claude Jarman Jr. ... Jerry
Lewis Stone ... Arthur Norton
Percy Kilbride ... Mr. Willie B. Williegood
Nicholas Joy ... Victor Alvord
Margaret Hamilton ... Mrs. Golightly
Hope Landin ... Mrs. Pope
Esther Somers Esther Somers ... Susan - the maid
Pal Pal ... Lassie (as Lassie)


Set in the rural south of the United States, a bereaved war widow learns to to put aside her bitterness and grief as she grows to love a young orphan boy and the dog that belonged to her late son. Punctuated with song-filled interludes. Written by Thomas McWilliams <tgm@netcom.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Jeanette MacDonald in her final screen appearance! See more »


Drama | Family | Musical


Approved | See all certifications »






Release Date:

12 May 1949 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Lassie perd et gagne See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)


Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Jeanette MacDonald's final film. See more »


If you watch Claude Jarmin Jr.'s lips closely, you will see that he is using the working title of the film, "Sun in the Morning". Jarmin had to redub the line when the film was released as "The Sun Comes Up". See more »


Followed by The New Lassie (1989) See more »


If You Were Mine
based on "Romance"
Music by Anton Rubinstein
Lyrics by Paul Bourget
Sung by Jeanette MacDonald
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

The Son Also Rises
17 November 2007 | by wes-connorsSee all my reviews

Jeannette MacDonald (as Helen Lorfield Winter) is an opera singer making a comeback, after three years of mourning for her deceased husband. She is devoted to her son, and he is devoted to his dog, Lassie. After a successful comeback concert, Ms. MacDonald's son is killed in a horrific accident; he is hit by a truck while running for Lassie. MacDonald is understandably devastated. Initially, she blames Lassie for contributing to her son's death, but MacDonald is able to forgive Lassie, and she comes to care for the dog as her son would have wished. Pained by the sound of children playing, MacDonald takes Lassie, and moves to the country, where she hopes to enjoy a life of solitude. Then, she and Lassie meet young Claude Jarman Jr. (as Jerry), from a neighboring orphanage…

The sentimental storyline in "The Sun Comes Up" is most predictable; but, it hardly matters, as the film does what it does well. First of all, this (the fifth in the original series) is the best "Lassie" since the 1943 original. Richard Thorpe is an unexpected success, seamlessly directing a seemingly difficult mix of children, seasoned professionals, and Lassie. In her last feature film, Jeannette MacDonald could not have been more capable; certainly, she ends her movie career on a high note. Jarman Jr., of "The Yearling" is a well-chosen Lassie co-star. Lassie performs expertly. André Previn provides an appropriately swell score. The film ends with a well-done fiery rescue.

When the film threatens to become too predictable, or sentimental, you can enjoy delightful supporting pros, like: Lewis Stone (an MGM classic), Percy Kilbride ("Pa Kettle"), and Margaret Hamilton (Oz' Wicked Witch). Tarzan's "boy" Johnny Sheffield appears (to have hanged up his loincloth). Other kids making impressions are: Dwayne Hickman ("Dobie Gillis") as "Hank", Teddy Infuhr (also from the "Ma and Pa Kettle" series) as "Junebug", and Michael McGuire (who'll possess the "Dark Shadows" cast in 1970) as "Cleaver".

******* The Sun Comes Up (1/27/49)) Richard Thorpe ~ Jeanette MacDonald, Claude Jarman Jr., Lloyd Nolan, Lassie

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