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Tom Brown's School Days (1940)

Approved | | Drama | 19 July 1940 (USA)
A young boy starts at Rugby boarding school. He is tormented by Flashman, the school bully.

Director:

Robert Stevenson

Writers:

Thomas Hughes (novel), Walter Ferris (adaptation) | 4 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Cedric Hardwicke ... Dr. Thomas Arnold (as Sir Cedric Hardwicke)
Freddie Bartholomew ... Ned East
Jimmy Lydon ... Tom Brown
Josephine Hutchinson ... Mrs. Mary Arnold
Billy Halop ... Flashman
Polly Moran ... Sally Harowell
Hughie Green ... Walker Brooke
Ernest Cossart ... Squire Brown
Alec Craig ... Old Thomas
Gale Storm ... Effie
Antoinette Rotche ... Tom Brown's Nanny
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Storyline

Thomas Arnold is hired to be the new headmaster at Rugby, whose students have acquired a reputation for being wild, disruptive, and dishonest. He institutes strict disciplinary policies, and expels numerous boys as a result. Many of the teachers, trustees, and parents turn against him. Squire Brown, his most vocal supporter, decides to send his own son Tom to Rugby as a demonstration of confidence. Tom soon learns that the school is plagued by bullies, and he is frequently targeted by them. He and the other boys are hindered, though, by an unwritten understanding that none of them will ever report the misdeeds of another to the authorities. Written by Snow Leopard

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

THE GREATEST SCHOOL-STORY EVER WRITTEN COMES TO THE SCREEN IN ALL ITS GLORY! (original print ad - all caps)

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

19 July 1940 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Adventures at Rugby See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Gale Storm's movie debut. See more »

Goofs

When the boy shoots a pea-shooter at Fleishman from the back, it hits near the top of his stovepipe hat yet he grabs back of his neck in pain. See more »

Quotes

Old Grimey: Moral principles! What's a school boy to do with moral principles? Feed him one end and beat him the other! That's education!
See more »

Crazy Credits

Movie based on Thomas Hugh's novel, yet he's given no credit for it. See more »

Connections

Version of Tom Brown's Schooldays (1951) See more »

Soundtracks

The Lincolnshire Poacher
(uncredited)
trad.
[Film's theme, and sung by the Rugby students in celebration]
See more »

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User Reviews

 
A Film That Takes The Measure Of A Man.
20 April 2001 | by rsoonsaSee all my reviews

This work is primarily occupied with the major incidents in the life of Thomas Arnold, headmaster of Rugby, and his overcoming of a good deal of resistance in lifting that institution from a tepid state to a position of England's finest public school. The strong direction is by Robert Stevenson, who also contributed mightily to the script, which is rather faithfully based upon the novel of the same name by Thomas Hughes, and which employs the student Tom Brown as Arnold's tactical and ethical surrogate within the scholastic body. Arnold, who must find an answer to the prevalent bullying of the day, is portrayed by Sir Cedric Hardwicke with a stunning performance, ably supported by Josephine Hutchinson as Mrs. Arnold. The film proceeds at a very crisp pace, with the scenario building well as Brown, played with feeling by Jimmy Lydon, prepares to make a stand against older and tyrannical students led by Billy Halop as Flashman. The arteries of the novel are presented with some depth, demonstrating the inculcation into the students of the importance of physical and mental courage, loyalty, and self-reliance, albeit apparently at the cost of some amount of intellectual achievement. The love of the students for Rugby and for their headmaster is presented throughout, the production design, costumes, and editing are all first-rate, and a superb musical score is contributed by Anthony Collins.


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