7.5/10
353
7 user 13 critic

The Brothers Warner (2007)

An intimate portrait and saga of four film pioneers--Harry, Albert, Sam and Jack who rose from immigrant poverty through personal tragedies persevering to create a major studio with a social conscience.

Director:

Cass Warner (as Cass Warner Sperling)

Writer:

Cass Warner (as Cass Warner Sperling)
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1 nomination. See more awards »

Photos

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Dennis Hopper ... Himself - Actor
Cass Warner ... Herself, Harry Warner's granddaughter, also narrator (as Cass Warner Sperling)
Bette-Ann Warner Bette-Ann Warner ... Herself (voice)
Harry M. Warner ... Himself (archive footage) (as Harry Warner)
Tab Hunter ... Himself
Norman Lear ... Himself - Producer
Efrem Zimbalist Jr. ... Himself
Leo Braudy Leo Braudy ... Himself, film historian, University of Southern California
Nancy Snow Nancy Snow ... Herself , author and professor
Steven J. Ross Steven J. Ross ... Himself, history professor, University of Southern California (as Steven Ross)
Samuel Goldwyn Jr. ... Himself (as Sam Goldwyn Jr.)
Benjamin Warner Benjamin Warner ... Himself (archive footage)
Betty Warner Sheinbaum Betty Warner Sheinbaum ... Herself, Harry Warner's daughter
Michael Birdwell Michael Birdwell ... Himself, historian
John Steel John Steel ... Himself, Albert Warner's grandson
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Storyline

Intimate portraits of brothers Albert Warner, Harry M. Warner, Jack L. Warner, and Sam Warner, the siblings who were close knit at the time of Warner Bros. Studios founding, but who later became estranged. This film, written and directed by Harry's granddaughter Cass, traces them from their humble, immigrant beginnings, to their breakthrough achievements, and their continuing imprint on American culture. This historic view of a family, and Hollywood's golden years offers invaluable and rare still photographs, classic film footage, and private access to relatives, friends, employees, and historians. Written by trivwhiz

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

25 September 2008 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Les frères Warner See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Color:

Color | Black and White (film clips and archive photographs)

Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Johanna Blakey is credited two different ways on screen, first as "Johanna Blakey," and second as "Johanna Blakley." See more »

Goofs

Cass Warner Sperling's commentary states that the 1927 film "The Jazz Singer," starring Al Jolson, grossed more than any movie made to that time and remained the all-time box-office champ until the release of "Gone With the Wind." It was actually Jolson's next film, "The Singing Fool," that set the box-office record that lasted until "Gone With the Wind." See more »

Connections

Features A Wild Hare (1940) See more »

Soundtracks

That's What the Well-Dressed Man in Harlem Will Wear
(uncredited)
Written by Irving Berlin
Performed by James Cross and ensemble
From This Is the Army (1943)
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User Reviews

 
a family affair
18 November 2009 | by dromascaSee all my reviews

Today the Warner name is just one component in a complicated corporate entanglement that the multimedia era made possible. One of the first and many things that we learn in this documentary is that the Warner Brothers film empire really started like a corner-of-the-street family affair, with the four sons of an East-European Jewish immigrant opening a cinema in Pennsylvania, with an blanket as improvised screen and borrowed chairs, with the wife of one of them playing the piano and nickel entry ticket price. Then when movies became hard to obtain the brothers decided to start making their own, and when the Edison monopoly chased them from the East Coast to California history began.

The four brothers built an empire American style, one of the most successful enterprises in one of the most successful American industry of the 20th century. Yet, their path was not smooth, their life was milestoned by happiness and tragedies as well, and they were no saints. Grand-daughter Cass Warner's film has both the qualities of bringing a lot of information backed-up by original film sequences, and of bringing a personal touch, with interviews of the members of the family, as well as important people in the industry, and film and communication experts. I appreciated the participation of descendants and representatives from the competitor studios like Disney or Paramount who did not hesitate to participate in this homage documentary. All parts are well dosed and the balanced mix takes us through six decades of movie making in parallel with the American history, actually part of the American history of the 20th century.

The documentary is informative, good, and human, and seldom falls into the trap of the blind adoration of its subject. The story of the brothers Warner and of Warner Brothers the corporation is the material for a great feature film, yet to be made in the future. With a bit of luck it will add a few Oscars near the Warner Brothers name.


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