6.8/10
1,014
38 user 9 critic

One Foot in Heaven (1941)

Approved | | Biography, Drama | 1 November 1941 (USA)
Episodic look at the life of a minister and his family as they move from one parish to another.

Director:

Irving Rapper

Writers:

Casey Robinson (screen play), Hartzell Spence (from the book by)
Reviews
Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Fredric March ... William Spence
Martha Scott ... Hope Morris Spence
Beulah Bondi ... Mrs. Lydia Sandow
Gene Lockhart ... Preston Thurston
Elisabeth Fraser ... Eileen Spence
Harry Davenport ... Elias Samson
Laura Hope Crews ... Mrs. Preston Thurston
Grant Mitchell ... Clayton Potter
Moroni Olsen ... Dr. John Romer
Frankie Thomas ... Hartzell Spence
Jerome Cowan ... Dr. Horrigan
Ernest Cossart ... John E. Morris
Nana Bryant ... Mrs. Morris
Carlotta Jelm Carlotta Jelm ... Eileen Spence
Peter Caldwell Peter Caldwell ... Hartzell Spence
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Storyline

In the early twentieth century, William Spence and Hope Morris Spence are a Methodist minister and his wife. From Central Canada, William forwent his medical school education in Toronto to become a minister, much to the chagrin of Hope's well off parents of Stratford, Ontario. Regardless of the unknowns of their first posting in rural Iowa, the only posting available, Hope married William in 1904. The adjustment to their new life was initially more difficult for Hope, especially their new poor economic standing and having their life not wholly being their own but rather that of their congregation, as William had the focus of this decision on which to drive his purpose. Their life over the next twenty years or so is presented, which eventually includes three children and they being constantly on the move as William gets assigned from one parish to another across the United States. That life is largely characterized by William having a strong mindset, but who will admittedly change his ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Folks, meet a grand FATHER! He's the affable, laffable head of the most delightful family that ever stepped out of America's screens...into America's hearts!

Genres:

Biography | Drama

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

1 November 1941 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Con un pie en el cielo See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Warner Bros. 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's earliest documented telecasts took place in Tucson Friday 27 July 1956 on KDWI (Channel 9), in Cincinnati Monday 30 July 1956 on WKRC (Channel 12), in both Los Angeles and Bellingham WA Tuesday 11 September 1956 on KNXT (Channel 2) and on KVOS (Channel 12), and in Albuquerque Sunday 27 September 1957 on KOAT (Channel 7); it first aired in Phoenix Sunday 18 November 1956 on KVAR (Channel 12), in Portland OR Saturday 22 December 1956 on KOIN (Channel 6), and in Boston Tuesday 25 December 1956 on WBZ (Channel 4). See more »

Goofs

At the beginning of the movie, William Spence (Fredric March) announces he has been "called" to the church and will become a pastor in the Methodist Church. His soon-to-be mother-in-law, Mrs. Norris (Nana Bryant)), replies that she would have preferred that he'd joined the Episcopal Church. At that time, in Canada, the dominant church was the Church of England, not the Episcopal Church. That is predominantly a US institution born out of the American Revolution. See more »

Quotes

William Spence: [to his son, Hartzell] A pastor's family are in a special category. We are uh... Well, It's as if we walked a sort of tightrope. Balancing with one foot on earth and one foot already in heaven.
See more »

Connections

Features The Silent Man (1917) See more »

Soundtracks

Bridal Chorus
(1850) (uncredited)
from "Lohengrin"
Written by Richard Wagner
Variations played often as part of the score
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Charming!
23 March 2008 | by AlanBryan2112See all my reviews

I watched this today, Easter Sunday 2008, on TCM. Totally charming and warm-hearted this is the kind of film you rarely see anymore.

It's a positive movie overall. It deals with a preachers conflict among church members and his own family that one sees in most small town churches.

The performances were quite good and all the lead actors deserve praise. The child actors were cute without being annoying.

My favorite character was the gardener Samson. His simple persona made me think that he could almost be a blueprint for Peter Sellers character in "Being There".

I was a preacher's kid too so I understood this film from that perspective.

The end scene is gorgeous and touching.


5 of 5 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
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