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Inherit the Wind (1965)

In 1925, a Tennessee science teacher is arrested for teaching Charles Darwin's theory of evolution, and a mighty courtroom battle ensues.


George Schaefer


Robert Hartung (adaptation), Jerome Lawrence (play) | 1 more credit »
Won 1 Primetime Emmy. Another 7 nominations. See more awards »


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Credited cast:
Melvyn Douglas ... Henry Drummond
Ed Begley ... Matthew Harrison Brady
Norman Wright Norman Wright ... Townsman
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Diane Baker ... Rachel Brown
Robert Breen Robert Breen ... Elijah
Burt Brinckerhoff Burt Brinckerhoff ... Bert Cates
Fred Burrell Fred Burrell ... Davenport
Doug Chapin Doug Chapin ... Howard
George Ebeling George Ebeling ... Sillers
Harry Ellerbe ... Dunlap
Wally Engelhardt Wally Engelhardt ... Corkin (as Wallace Englehardt)
Beulah Garrick Beulah Garrick ... Mrs. McClain
Murray Hamilton ... E. K. Hornbeck
John Irving John Irving ... Reporter (as John D. Irving)
Adrienne King ... Melinda


In 1925, a Tennessee science teacher is arrested for teaching Charles Darwin's theory of evolution, and a mighty courtroom battle ensues.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis









Release Date:

18 November 1965 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Hallmark Hall of Fame: Inherit the Wind (#15.2) See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Melvyn Douglas had also taken over the role of "Henry Drummond" from Paul Muni in the original Broadway production of this famous play. See more »


Version of Inherit the Wind (1988) See more »

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User Reviews

Stupidity highlighted in this great film.
19 June 2012 | by flusemSee all my reviews

Institutionalised stupidity was perfectly highlighted in this superb film. All the remakes and TV adaptations did the storyline justice but fell short of the originals impact. It reached a global audience, seriously damaging the image of religion in the USA.

A landmark cinematographic gem that quickly reached cult film status. It was responsible for fans coining the phrase Creatard, as in creationist retard. The storyline highlighted the blind faith thoughtlessness of evangelical, extremely commercial Christian fundamentalism. Demonstrating how it had corrupted both the education and legal systems.

When watching the film it is best to know before hand that Scientific theories are the most reliable, rigorous, and comprehensive form of scientific knowledge. This is significantly different from the word "theory" in common usage, which implies that something is unproven or speculative.

The defining characteristic of all scientific knowledge, including theories, is the ability to make falsifiable or testable predictions. In the same way as evolutionary theory predicted genetics and the shared genome.

The relevance and specificity of those predictions determine how potentially useful the theory is. A would-be theory that makes no observable predictions is not a useful theory. Predictions not sufficiently specific to be tested are similarly not useful. In both cases, the term "theory" is hardly applicable.

A body of descriptions of knowledge is usually only called a theory if it has fulfilled these criteria -It makes falsifiable predictions with consistent accuracy across a broad area of scientific inquiry (such as mechanics. -It is well-supported by many independent strands of evidence, rather than a single foundation. This ensures that it is probably a good approximation, if not completely correct. -It is consistent with pre-existing theories and other experimental results. (Its predictions may differ slightly from pre-existing theories in cases where they are more accurate than before.) -It can be adapted and modified to account for new evidence as it is discovered, thus increasing its predictive capability over time. -It is among the most parsimonious explanations, sparing in proposed entities or explanations. (See Occam's razor. Since there is no generally accepted objective definition of parsimony, this is not a strict criterion, but some theories are much less economical than others.) The first three criteria are the most important. Theories considered scientific meet at least most of the criteria, but ideally all of them. This is true of such established theories as special and general relativity, quantum mechanics, plate tectonics, evolution, etc.

Now enjoy a cracking film!

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