Review: ‘The White Cliffs of Dover’

The White Cliffs of Dover is the saga [based on Alice Duer Miller's poem] of an American girl who went to England for a vacation in 1914, fell in love with a title, learned to love Britain and remained there to go through the First World War and see the coming of the Second.

The White Cliffs of Dover is the saga [based on Alice Duer Miller’s poem] of an American girl who went to England for a vacation in 1914, fell in love with a title, learned to love Britain and remained there to go through the First World War and see the coming of the Second.

As the story opens, Irene Dunne, a Red Cross supervisor in an English Army hospital, is awaiting the arrival of casualties from what ostensibly was the Dieppe raid. At her desk, prepared for a heavy load of injured soldiers, she begins to muse about the white cliffs and the first time she saw them as a young girl on her arrival in England back in 1914.

From this, the action cuts back to that time and carries Dunne through her marriage to Sir John Ashwood (Alan Marshal), her grief over his loss in World War I, and finally to the second which claims their son.

Dunne gives an excellent performance, as does Alan Marshal, playing her husband, while Roddy McDowall stands out sharply as their son.

The White Cliffs of Dover

Production

M-G-M. Director Clarence Brown; Producer Sidney Franklin; Screenplay Claudine West, Jan Lustig, George Froeschel; Camera George Folsey; Editor Robert J. Kern; Music Herbert Stothart; Art Director Cedric Gibbons, Randall Duell

Crew

(B&W) Extract of a review from 1944. Running time: 126 MIN.

With

Irene Dunne Alan Marshall Frank Morgan Roddy McDowall Van Johnson Peter Lawford
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