Review: ‘Wee Willie Winkie’

Shirley Temple is growing up to be a big little girl. The dimple in the cheek is still there but those knees are losing their contour.

Shirley Temple is growing up to be a big little girl. The dimple in the cheek is still there but those knees are losing their contour.

Darryl Zanuck and 20th-Fox recognized the need of transition. Temple is surrounded but not submerged by Academy prize-winners. She comes up smiling through her tears.

The Rudyard Kipling story is an adventure yarn about a young American widow and her daughter who journey to India and the paternal protection of the child’s grandfather, a colonel of a Highland regiment stationed on the frontier. The menace of native insurrection and massacre provides melodramatic suspense.

When open warfare is threatened, the little girl on a peace-pleading mission is delivered into enemy hands. She is the means of reconciling the two factions.

Victor McLaglen as a tough segeant-major creates a splendid characterization of a vigorous warrior whose heart is softened when he becomes the friend and guide of Shirley.

Wee Willie Winkie

Production

20th Century-Fox. Director John Ford; Producer Gene Markey; Screenplay Julien Josephson; Camera Arthur Miller; Editor Walter Thompson; Music Alfred Newman

Crew

(B&W) Available on VHS. Extract of a review from 1937. Running time: 105 MIN.

With

Shirley Temple Victor McLaglen C. Aubrey Smith June Lang Michael Whalen Cesar Romero
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