6.1/10
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The Man from Down Under (1943)

Approved | | Action, Comedy, Drama | 4 August 1943 (USA)
A crusty old Sergeant of the Queen's Australian army in World War I befriends a small orphaned boy and his tiny sister on the night he is to go back to Australia. The Sergeant emotionally ... See full summary »

Director:

Robert Z. Leonard

Writers:

Bogart Rogers (story), Mary Kelly (story) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Charles Laughton ... Jocko Wilson
Binnie Barnes ... Aggie Dawlins
Richard Carlson ... 'Nipper' Wilson
Donna Reed ... Mary Wilson
Christopher Severn Christopher Severn ... 'Nipper' as a Child
Clyde Cook ... Ginger Gaffney
Stephen McNally ... 'Dusty' Rhodes (as Horace McNally)
Arthur Shields ... Father Polycarp
Evelyn Falke Evelyn Falke ... Mary as a Child
Hobart Cavanaugh ... Boots
André Charlot André Charlot ... Father Antoine
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Storyline

A crusty old Sergeant of the Queen's Australian army in World War I befriends a small orphaned boy and his tiny sister on the night he is to go back to Australia. The Sergeant emotionally decides to take them with him. He raises the boy and sends the girl to a prominent girl's school. As adults, the boy becomes the national boxing champion of Australia and the girl is a polished and beautiful young woman. As it is mentioned at the beginning of the movie, the boy has become orphaned, and the girl was a ward of the family, without either child's knowledge. This is a lovely film. However, the growing love between the boy and girl are a bit unbelievable beyond sibling love, but yes, it goes there. Afraid, they separate. This is an innocently presented movie about the old guy, his care and affection for the children even through adulthood, his desire to make them happy and safe, and the "miracle" that the kids are not siblings after all, since they are in love. Written by Texas Grandma

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

THRILLS! FUN! ACTION! A GRAND ENTERTAINMENT! (original lobby card-all caps)

Genres:

Action | Comedy | Drama | War

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

4 August 1943 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Le héros du Pacifique See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Film debut of Carol Nugent. See more »

Soundtracks

'E Pinched Me
by Earl K. Brent (as Earl Brent)
Sung by Binnie Barnes (uncredited)
See more »

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User Reviews

 
MGM's concept of Australia , 1943
24 June 1999 | by nathanbrSee all my reviews

The film is an interesting oddity for this antipodean viewer . Charles Laughton sounds like a Cockney but utters , fairly convincingly , a whole lot of contemporary (1943) Australian slang expressions like "strike me pink" and "bonzer" . Laughton gives the open , hearty , unsophisticated digger a valiant try but he's simply miscast: it was really a role crying out for Chips Rafferty but Chips' career was then only at the diaper stage . Binnie Barnes , Richard Carlson , Stephen McNally and even Donna Reed are more convincing in this milieu but there's an essential miscalculation about the whole venture that makes it unintentionally funny to an Australian audience . The shades of "incest" surrounding Richard Carlson's/Donna Reed's mutual attraction are resolved in a typically hypocritical deus ex machina style that you can see coming from the first reel . The Wells Root screenplay covers the period from World War 1 to World War 2 as Laughton tries to bring up , in Australia , the French orphans he inherited during his wartime stint in France. Robert Z Leonard , better known for his stylish direction of Jeanette MacDonald/Nelson Eddy operettas like "Maytime" directs this jumble in an ill-at-ease manner .


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