7.5/10
365
67 user 3 critic

Hand in Hand (1961)

A little Roman Catholic boy and a little Jewish girl become best friends despite the prejudice that surrounds them.

Director:

Philip Leacock

Writers:

Diana Morgan (screenplay), Leopold Atlas (adaptation) | 1 more credit »
Reviews

On Disc

at Amazon

Won 1 Golden Globe. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »

Photos

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Loretta Parry ... Rachel Mathias
Philip Needs ... Michael O'Malley
John Gregson ... Father Timothy
Sybil Thorndike ... Lady Caroline
Finlay Currie ... Mr. Pritchard
Derek Sydney ... Rabbi Benjamin
Miriam Karlin Miriam Karlin ... Mrs. Mathias
Arnold Diamond ... Mr. Mathias
Kathleen Byron ... Mrs. O'Malley
Barry Keegan Barry Keegan ... Mr. O'Malley
Martin Lawrence Martin Lawrence ... The Cantor
Barbara Hicks ... Miss Roberts
Denis Gilmore Denis Gilmore ... Tom (as Dennis Gilmore)
Peter Pike Peter Pike ... Harry
Susan Reid Susan Reid ... Priscilla
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Storyline

In the town of Springfield, England, adolescents Michael O'Malley and Rachel Mathias strike up a friendship despite their less than friendly first meeting at school. That friendship becomes so strong that they spend whatever time they can together, Mike even forgoing playing his regular games with his old friends just so that Rachel won't feel left out. Their friendship is primarily based on reaching for somewhat collective dreams, those that seem to be at the top of the list being going to London to have tea with the Queen, and going big game hunting in Africa. They feel they are stronger as a pair than they are as individuals. Their respective parents support the friendship, which they may not have if it was ten years later and the friendship was a romantic one, their parents who would like their respective offspring to marry within their own religion, Mike's family who is Catholic, Rachel's being Jewish. The first test to their friendship is the possibility of Rachel's family ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Here is Drama That Will Open Your Eyes and Awaken Your Heart! See more »

Genres:

Drama | Family

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English | Latin | Hebrew

Release Date:

7 April 1963 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

A Estrela e a Cruz See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Although filmed in England in the summer of 1960 under the title "The Star and The Cross", it was for some reason kept on the shelf and not released in the UK until April 7th, 1963, by which time the title had been changed to "Hand in Hand" and it went out on release on the ABC circuit as the supporting film to the Tony Hancock comedy "The Punch and Judy Man". See more »

Goofs

When the children are on the river, the rope towing the rubber raft is visible at times. See more »

Quotes

Michael O'Malley: What's the matter?
Rachel Mathias: It's Hector.
Michael O'Malley: Has he run away?
Rachel Mathias: He's dead. I looked in his cage this morning and he wouldn't wake up. Mummy said it was old age.
Michael O'Malley: Poor old Hector.
Rachel Mathias: I wrapped him in my best hankie.
Michael O'Malley: We'll have a proper funeral.
Rachel Mathias: Let's.
Michael O'Malley: We'll bury him just outside the door. I'll be the priest.
Rachel Mathias: But, but he's a Jewish mouse. He's mine.
[...]
See more »

Soundtracks

Adeste Fidelis
(uncredited)
Traditional carol
Performed by Philip Needs
[Michael sings the song at Hector's funeral]
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Very memorable
26 January 2007 | by GMJamesSee all my reviews

It is amazing how powerful films can be to a child. Upon reading the numerous reviews and postings of the wonderful movie "Hand in Hand", it is interesting how many of the writers who are probably in the same age bracket and, at least in the U.S., remember this movie airing on the CBS Children's Film Festival on a Saturday afternoon. I guess one can thank CBS, Kukla, Fran (Allison), Ollie and Burr Tillstrom for introducing this powerful film on religious understanding and tolerance within the friendship of two young children.

I remember Rachel and Michael (Loretta Parry and Philip Needs). Even though the film was probably 7 or 8 years old when I first saw the movie on TV, I can relate to them as a child. Perhaps because of how they were raised and the different religions they were taught, the children were a bit suspicious but after a while they got to know each other. What still gets to me after so many years is how misunderstanding and seeing people just as what their were raised can get in the way of seeing others as human beings.

There is a sense of curiosity and wonder getting to know someone who was raised from a different religion and that curiosity begets friendship and, ultimately, understanding. As directed by Philip Leacock (who would later direct numerous TV shows including Route 66, Gunsmoke and The Waltons) and written by Diana Morgan (from a story by Sidney Harmon), Hand in Hand is a sensitive and powerful film.

I am not a fan of remaking great films. But consider the state of religion in the U.S. and the world and how many conflicts occur for the sake of religion. With the right screenwriter, director and cast, I think Hand in Hand could be adapted to the current day. Until then, I concur with others on releasing this wonderful film on DVD.


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