6.4/10
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53 user 18 critic

Gabriel Over the White House (1933)

Passed | | Drama, Fantasy, Romance | 31 March 1933 (USA)
A political hack becomes President during the height of the Depression and undergoes a metamorphosis into an incorruptible statesman after a near-fatal accident.

Director:

Gregory La Cava (as Gregory LaCava)

Writers:

Carey Wilson (screen play), Bertram Bloch (additional dialogue) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Walter Huston ... Hon. Judson Hammond - The President of the United States
Karen Morley ... Pendola Molloy
Franchot Tone ... Hartley Beekman - Secretary to the President
Arthur Byron ... Jasper Brooks - Secretary of State
Dickie Moore ... Jimmy Vetter
C. Henry Gordon ... Nick Diamond
David Landau ... John Bronson
Samuel S. Hinds ... Dr. H.L. Eastman (as Samuel Hinds)
William Pawley ... Borell
Jean Parker ... Alice Bronson
Claire Du Brey ... Nurse (as Claire DuBrey)
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Storyline

Newly inaugurated President Judson Hammond is content to live out the next four years exercising a hands-off approach and leaving the problems of Depression America to local authorities. But after a miraculous recovery from an auto accident, Hammond is ready to take on every social ill and neither Congress, gangsters nor the nations of the world will stop him. Written by Erik Gregersen <erik@astro.as.utexas.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The sensation of a nation!

Genres:

Drama | Fantasy | Romance

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

31 March 1933 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

El despertar de una nación See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (preview)

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

A scene for the movie depicting bullets fired at the President's car was deleted following the attempted assassination of President-elect Franklin D. Roosevelt. See more »

Goofs

Through out the whole movie Walter Huston's hair is combed differently in one continuous scene after another. It's obvious many of the cuts back to him are from different takes. See more »

Quotes

Hartley 'Beek' Beekman - Secretary to the President: [about the President] The way he thinks is so simple and honest that it sounds... sounds a little crazy.
Pendola 'Pendie' Molloy: He's doing the things you wanted. And if he's mad, it's a divine madness. Look at the chaos and catastrophe the sane men of this world have brought about!
See more »

Connections

Featured in Private Screenings: Child Stars (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

Symphony No. 1 in C Minor, Op. 68
(1876) (uncredited)
Music by Johannes Brahms
A fourth movement theme is played during the opening credits
The same theme is used often as a leitmotif suggesting Archangel Gabriel's presence
See more »

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User Reviews

 
A political fantasy with fascistic overtones
12 September 1999 | by piapiaSee all my reviews

I remember having seen this movie when I was very young, and it impressed me then as propaganda for President Roosevelt's New Deal. Now I know better, and have read something about its real history. William Randolph Hearst had become an FDR fan, and had this picture made by his Cosmopolitan productions, affiliated with MGM, in order to express what he hoped the new President would do. MGM's boss, Louis B. Mayer, a staunch Republican, shelved the picture until after the Roosevelt inauguration. Now we can see that what Hearst expected FDR to do by dictatorial means, the President achieved as a real believer in Democracy. The picture is intelligent; Walter Huston's performance, brilliant, as well as the supporting work by Karen Morley and Franchot Tone (was this his movie debut?). The direction by Gregory LaCava, exceptional, as he managed to make the audience believe in such far-fetched and unbelievable sequences as the "war" against racketeers with courts martial included, but he could not avoid the allusions to the Archangel Gabriel sounding ridiculous. Anyhow this a curious motion picture, and probably the most politically inclined ever made by a major Hollywood studio. But the fascistic leanings of Hearst could not be hidden, not even by a producer as liberal in politics as Walter Wanger.


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