TOMORROW, THE WORLD!
(director; Leslie Fenton, screenwriters: Leopold Atlas/Ring Lardner Jr./from the play by James Gow and Armand D’Usseau; cinematographer: Henry Sharp; editor: Ann Bauchens; music: Louis Applebaum; cast: Fredric March (Mike Frame), Betty Field (Leona Richards), Agnes Moorehead (Jessie), Skippy Homeier (Emil Bruckner), Joan Carroll (Pat Frame) Edit Angold (Frieda), Rudy Wissler (Stan), Patsy Ann Thompson (Millie); Runtime: 101; MPAA Rating: NR; producers:Lester Cowan, David Hall; 1944-B/W-in English and some German)
“Adequate as a domestic drama on hate, but is too predictable on how it’s resolved.“
Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz
The title is taken from Hitler’s quote, “Today Germany, tomorrow the world!” Leslie Fenton (“Streets of Laredo”/”Saigon”) directs a film based on the topical 1943 Broadway play by James Gow and Armand D’Usseau. It’s written by Leopold Atlas and by Ring Lardner Jr., “soon to be blacklisted” as one of the Hollywood Ten for not testifying to the House Un-American Activities Committee. The only two stage members cast in the film were the adolescent star, Skippy Homeier, and the German housekeeper played by Edit Angold. A 12-year-old German orphan boy, Emil Bruckner (Skippy Homeier), active in the Hitler Youth, is sent to live with his Midwestern liberal widower uncle, a university chemistry professor, Mike Frame (Fredric March), after both his liberal parents die in a concentration camp. The uncle will try to teach the indoctrinated youth the evils of the Nazis, as the kid has renounced his parents as traitors. At home, Mike’s daughter Pat (Joan Carroll) can’t wait to meet her cousin, while Mike’s anti-Nazi spinster sister Jessie (Agnes Moorehead), disapproves of his stay. Frieda (Edit Angold), their German housekeeper, is happy to welcome her fellow countryman, and Leona Richards (Betty Field), a Jewish schoolteacher and Mike’s sweetheart, supports Mike’s decision to raise him. But she bears the brunt of the kid’s anti-Semitic remarks and is conflicted with breaking the relationship after she thinks Mike fails to discipline the ‘young Fuhrer’. Tomorrow, The World!, like The Seventh Cross (1944), were rare films of the time period that related to stories about the struggles of regular Germans. This one is adequate as a domestic drama on hate, but is too predictable on how it’s resolved.
REVIEWED ON 4/1/2019 GRADE: B- https://dennisschwartzreviews.com/