- Acting of Lead Performers
- Acting of Supporting Cast
- Music Score
- Title Sequence
- Historical Importance
- Would You Recommend?
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Watch on the Rhine
- Ron Collins
Outstanding movie with excellent casting, direction, and outstanding performances by Ms. Davis, Mr. Lucas, and Ms. Watson. Indeed, the entire cast was outstanding. It remains one of my favorite movies of all-time. I especially loved Ms. Watson as the mother. She wasoutstanding as well. Moreover, both performances by Davis and Lukas were breath taking. A wonderful, entertaining film with a cleaclear message of the times.
- Luciano Vazquez
I have seen "Watch on the rhine" several times, and each time I understand more of what this movie stands for, one word "freedom" what brave men have done, then and now, fight for our freedom each time it is threaten. Everytime I see this flim I choke up because these men whom I have never met give themselves to do what is necessary for us to live the way we do and take for granted. These types of movies make me have more respect for all men no matter what they are, or where they came from, and I quote "All men are created equal" Paul Lukas in this movie is absolutely fantastic, when he speaks I am totally fixed and listen intensely. I find this movie to be in my top ten, very entertaining and educational as well. I love Bette Davis in all of her movies but I lose her in this film when Paul Lukas enters and begins to speak. Well thats my two cents, I hope when you watch the movie you see what I see or at least take something from this fine "work of art". I am not much of a writer please forgive my grammer. Thank you.
For the life of me, I cannot understand any reviewer who can't just sit back and enjoy a film without bringing politics into it! It doesn't matter one whit what Hammett and Hellman believed in their private lives. What matters here is the story they wrote and it is a great one! Our nation had our men fighting and dying by the thousands and we on the homefront needed to be reminded why. This film does that admirably. Paul Lukas is the real star here, winning the Academy Award for Best Actor, with the great Bette Davis in a backup role as his very supportive wife. There were Nazi cells in the U.S. during the war and, in fact, one was in my home town. These cells were the terrorists of the day back then, plotting to blow up ships in our ports, etc. I am pleased this film brings that out. I've always liked this film, as it is well-acted and the principals are superb in their roles. I applaud Jack Warner for buying the rights to this play and allowing this film to be made!
Watch on the Rhine
- Dashiell B.
A stirring adaptation of Lillian Hellam's play. Lukas won the Best Actor Oscar as a German freedom fighter, Davis is overshadowed by Lukas and the story & Watson was nominated as her Mother. Hellman added dialouge to the screenplay written by her lover, Dashiell Hammett, a story which has dated a little bit. Still an engaging stand against nazism. I give it a 4/5.
Oddity on the Rhine
- gregg kreutz
That we're expected to take the lead-character's identity in this movie at face value--he's presented as a nobel anti-nazi freedom fighter-- and that so many people did when it came out and do now is an interesting comment on how well Lillian Hellman understood her public. An unrepentant apologist for Stalin during the worst excesses of his regime--25 Million killed--Hellman's long speeches in this movie about morality are an interesting study in hypocrisy. At the time bright people who should have known better apparently swallowed this kind of rhetoric whole, but one would hope that watching the movie now would be a helpful reminder to us that noble talk can often disguise evil intent (or lead to inadvertently horribly results). If nothing else, those weird brainwashed kids should raise a definite red flag. The only movie more reprehensibly nutty than this one is another Lillian Hellman scripted oddity; The North Star (Check out happy Communist Worker Walter Brennan)
Beautifully Underplayed by Bette
Really absorbing film with Lukas giving his career best performance and Davis painting a subtle, sensitive characterization as the devoted wife. Funny reading Maltin's review- he must not know, as so often stated in the various "Bette" tomes as well as in her own writings, that she deliberately toned down and underplayed her role- Her's was NOT the "showy" character. So, Bette not "somewhat overshadowed"; just the consummate actress giving another great, and appropriate , performance.
- Steve W
I enjoyed the entire cast, but for me, this film really stands out for its intelligent, nuanced handling of some of the complexities involved with WWII and Fascism in general, from the standpoint of American and European experiences or historical context. "Heroes and Villains" are all well rounded characters. So many wartime films in America (as elsewhere) tended toward a more one dimensional, super patriotic treatment... This script displays the kind of depth and intelligence you find in 40's Hollywood films like Frank Capra's, to name one.
Bette Davis & Paul Lukas in DC
Although this film is little know & rarely mentioned, it was nominated for 5 Oscars. The subject is a family's struggles with WWII. Specifically, being part of the anti-Nazi resistance movement. Davis is married to one of the main resistance movement leaders who s being sought by the Nazis. So the family has come to the US to her natal home in DC. That's where the drama takes place. It's a fascinating look at what generations of a family went through in order to resist Nazi aggressions. The release of the film is ever so timely since it is just as the war ends. Davis' performance is not one of her fiery ones; but rather, is one of her family-centered and patriotic ones that is very American.
5 Oscar Nominee WWII at Home Drama
I don't get why this film is slighted as insignificant because it's not. It didn't earn 5 Oscar nominations during the height of Hollywood's Golden Era for being inferior! Warner Brothers was making more contributions to the WWII Allied efforts than the public was aware of at that time. Bette Davis was their best actor and an enthusiastic US patriot. As time has proved, once Bette Davis had arrived at the spot at the top in her acting career, Davis began using her career to express ideas through characters that she felt the public could relate to or learn from. So this movie is about a family who'd been working in Germany against the Nazis, returning to Washington, DC where the wife & mother (Davis) had been raised in the family home. The husband (Paul Lukas, in an Oscar winning role) is an anti3rd reich activist whose writing has placed a price on his life. So the film is about how the war is affecting his wife and children. Davis' performance is emotionally absorbing.
Davis & Lukas on the Run from Nazis
The notable aspect of the role Bette Davis plays is what is not scripted: no raging out, no powerhouse acting. Instead, Davis is the wife of a German who is an avid anti-Nazi activist. They family of 5 is fleeing from pro-Nazi henchmen. After they arrive at her natal home, the details of what's to come begin to unfold. Lukas will have another assignment and leave his family in DC. Davis becomes the wife who will be left behind and very likely to become a widow and single mother of three. As she faces this daunting prospect, her monologues are beautifully delivered so that they are quite easy to identify with. I'd bet many a WWII widow related more with this character she played that any other being played in other films.
Bette Davis resisting Nazism in DC
Bette Davis heads the terrific cast of this feature film about a multi-cultural family, the Mullers, fleeing from Germany to Washington, D.C. USA, as part of the resistance movement against WWII Nazism. Davis is the American wife of a major German freedom fighter (Paul Lukas)whose life is in peril due to his anti-Nazi political activities. With their three children, the Mullers travel to Sara's family's home in DC. All of the performances are top knotch. Bette Davis' stand outs as a wife who's ultra-supportive of her husband, even if it means losing him. It's a very important WWII related film about those who gave so much of themselves to be noncooperative with the Nazi's. Davis takes on another major role of social significance.
Bette Davis & Paul Lukas
...not Paul Henried (unfortunately, because he'd have been quite good playing Miller). Once again Bette Davis; character is from the US South & wealth. But this time she's chosen to make a family with a European man who's part of the anti-Nazi resistance movement. Davis plays a wifely wife & family-focused woman. Because she plays the role this way, through her character, Davis reveals what it was like for a typical family woman to support her husband's choices even though doing so put her family in danger. Hellman's screenplay's a stunner.
Partners Again: Davis & Hellman
Whenever they announce it's a Davis movie or a Hellman screenplay, my generation could hardly wait to go to the theater. Davis plays such a multi-faceted character in this WWII drama. Mother, wife, daughter, sister, American married to a European, Southerner, living modestly but raised with wealth. That's a heap of facets to portray. Add to it that her family's fleeing from being associated with espionage during WWII. The complexities Hellman loads into the screenplay could only be properly portrayed by Bette Davis.
Watch on the Rhine (1943)
Subtle and very moving, extremely well written and the cast is amazing, particularly Bette Davis, Lucile Watson and Paul Henreid. It's an unusual film for the time, expertly directed. Great score, a wonderful film throughout.
WW II Movie of Significance
- Mark Lemasters
Yes, this movie is a tear jerker. Yes, this movie is well acted. But the theme of the movie shows the plight of "the regular man" as we opened the world during WW II. The torment, the compassion, the secrecy that the Mueller family endures is just symbolic of the thousands of people who felt the war was unjust. A must see for those interested in History as well as the fine performances of WW II actors. Paul Lukas is excellent and Bette Davis shows yet another dimension in her acting career.
Excellent dramatic performances. A real tear jerker. Story of people with courage and purpose.Supporting cast terrific. Fine story would be on anyones list of favorites.
Why is this not on DVD?
- Debbie Crawford
Come on you all a Bette Davis movie thats not on DVD be for real. This movie as well as The Catered Affair should be on DVD.
- Wendy Winkler
People may be shocked that Paul Lukas won the Oscar and not Humphrey Bogart. But just watch Paul Lukas' powerful and moving performance. He truly deserved the Oscar.