6.7/10
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11 user 8 critic

The Proud Valley (1940)

Not Rated | | Drama, Music | 6 April 1940 (UK)
In a Welsh coal mining valley, a young man with a beautiful singing voice is called upon to make the ultimate sacrifice when a pit disaster threatens.

Director:

Pen Tennyson

Writers:

Herbert Marshall (based on the story by), Alfredda Brilliant (based on the story by) | 3 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Paul Robeson ... David
Edward Chapman ... Dick Parry
Simon Lack Simon Lack ... Emlyn Parry
Rachel Thomas Rachel Thomas ... Mrs. Parry
Edward Rigby ... Bert
Dilys Thomas Dilys Thomas ... Dilys
Janet Johnson Janet Johnson ... Gwen Owen
Charles Williams Charles Williams ... Evans
Jack Jones Jack Jones ... Thomas
Dilys Davies Dilys Davies ... Mrs. Owen
Clifford Evans ... Seth Jones
Allan Jeayes Allan Jeayes ... Mr. Trevor (as Alan Jeayes)
George Merritt ... Mr. Lewis
Edward Lexy ... Commissionaire
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Storyline

In a Welsh coal mining valley, a young man with a beautiful singing voice is called upon to make the ultimate sacrifice when a pit disaster threatens. Written by Steve Crook <steve@brainstorm.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

wales | labor union | See All (2) »

Genres:

Drama | Music

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

6 April 1940 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

The Tunnel See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

CAPAD, Ealing Studios See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

This film is part of the Criterion Collection, spine #373. See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits prologue: South Wales 1938 See more »

Connections

Featured in Arena: Cinema (1977) See more »

Soundtracks

Deep River
(uncredited)
Traditional
Arranged by Harry T. Burleigh
See more »

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User Reviews

A film worth discovering.
25 June 2003 | by philipdaviesSee all my reviews

This film was recently shown to a large and very appreciative audience of all ages and backgrounds at the Paul Robeson Film Festival, organised by The National Screen and Sound Archive of Wales, a Department of The National Library of Wales (situated in the beautiful University town of Aberystwyth, on the mid-Wales coast).

It is full of wonderful, humane performances, has very exciting and exceptionally well-realized scenes of underground peril in the coal mines of South Wales (when we had such long-forgotten things as mines), and a social conscience clearly influenced by the Soviet workers' epics of the period. Add to the mix a degree of seriousness in the treatment of the lives and problems of working-class communities, and of the real-life Welsh experience, and also of the experience of blacks in the workplace, and one has an English-produced film probably unique in its period for the range of its sympathies. The coming war obviously put the English of the time on their honour!

Oh, yes - and the singing is very special, too!

Of course, worker-manager relations are idealised to a degree, but not so much as to suppress quite a number of uncomfortable truths, that must have had smug metropolitan audiences of the period squirming in their seats. Altogether, a much truer, and therefore finer, treatment of the Welsh mining experience than anything to be found in that overblown, overhyped confection, 'How green was my valley'.

Naturally, this excellent early Ealing feature is not generally available to the domestic market in Britain.

However, since we know the value of these things in Wales, I understand that our Sales Department at The National Library of Wales is usually able to supply individual video copies of the film! Interested parties should make enquires directly to that institution.

The Festival of films featuring Paul Robeson, of which the above is the first, continues in association with Aberystwyth Arts Centre Cinema until the 15th of July, 2003. The unreserved tickets are free. An interesting linked exhibition at The National Library of Wales, 'Let Paul Robeson Sing!', continues 'til the 25th of October 2003. The admission to this is also free.

I'm sure this information will be of interest to IMDB patrons.


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