Add a Review

  • This wonderful film contains a warm, nostalgic look back at the life of an ailing school teacher. As time and her illness progresses, Miss Dove, best known to the small town as a rigid and stiff disciplinarian, realizes the positive effects she has had on the people around her, and their love for her. Never married, childless Miss Dove finds purpose and contentment in her duty -- to repay her father's debt and thereby avoid a scandal, by working as a teacher, instead of marrying the man she loved.

    The film has especially fine direction, performances, and an intelligent, multi-layered script. While Miss Dove appears a one-dimensional, humorless snob at the beginning of the film, the many layers of her story and personality are revealed throughout the course of the film. By the end, you realize why everyone is so fond of her.

    Thinking back over this film, I was struck by the image in my mind of an America that seems to no longer exist. Healthy, proud, and affluent small towns, the belief in following one's duty in life instead of whims, and the sense of personal responsibility among these characters are so unusual to see in a modern film -- or modern life. There was a scene in which Miss Dove helped a bank avoid closing, a selfless, altruistic act that seemed so different than anything that could have occurred in the recent banking crisis.

    Growing up in the 1980s, I think I was seeing the last of this generation fade away. Perhaps I still am. I remember writing a fan letter to Jennifer Jones years ago. I loved her then as I still do. I never considered it odd that she did not reply. She was a symbol of the grace and dignity of a long gone era. Noticing that she just passed away, I can't help but feel she passed away with the unfortunate changing of our culture, to the violent, seedy, and irresponsible. But what an enduring, magical film legacy she left behind.
  • Frances Gray Patton wrote this beloved novel of a small-town spinster. She is a determined woman, one who turned a wrecked life and an enormous family debt into a reason to teach generations of New England young people the virtues of going-through-the-pain to get the gain. The theme of this film is the positive effect of her rough-hewn self-assertiveness training on her students. Jennifer Jones plays the schoolteacher, from youth to old-age, and very winningly. The film was directed by veteran Henry Koster. Others in the very large and amiably charming cast include Robert Stack, fine actor Robert Douglas, Kipp Hamilton, charismatic Peggy Knudsen, Chuck Connors, Jerry Paris, Mary Wickes, Leslie Bradley, Marshall Thompson, Biff Elliott, Richard Deacon and many more. What happens in the story is that Miss Dove falls ill one day during class and has to be carried from her students and taken to the hospital. The town's generations, all taught by this remarkable woman, react; some come from far away or start stopping by the hospital for news; and this leads to a flashback of how her life's course was changed by her father's money problems and the desertion of her by her erstwhile suitor; how she then vowed to pay back every cent of her father's debt, though she was not personally responsible; and how she began teaching school and has gone on doing so. This intelligent, heart-warming and thought-provoking story has a climax in her medical crisis and a happy ending; it is not perhaps a great film, but Miss Dove is very probably a great character, and one many can learn from long after the film has ended. Every element here is well-crafted and contributes to a surprisingly entertaining and most-believable presentation. Music is by Leigh Harline, cinematography by Leon Shamroy with contributions by Lyle Wheeler and many others. Cool and beautiful, and as fascinating as is the lady herself
  • "Good morning, Miss Dove" was a major and pleasant surprise to me. I expected an over- sentimental, although well-made, movie. On the contrary, I discovered that there is a subtext of sense of humor, and the many psychological subtleties and finesses are even more relevant than sentimentalism. Of course, I do not deny that I was deeply touched by this extraordinary, wonderful woman, Miss Dove.

    Miss Dove is the essence of the movie, and even the sense of humor is based on her. Her pride, her aloofness, her deep conviction to be always right, her refined, elegant and slightly ironic way of talking that never weavers, not even in dire straits, make Miss Dove a comic character, in some sense. And we see that she looks at her own over-the-top strictness with a dose of self-irony.

    Miss Dove's mission as a teacher is based on a steel principle: all her pupils are equal. Any partiality is just inconceivable. Actually, she cannot help to have a particular love for some of them, especially for Bill. When, after his service in the Marine Corps, the grown-up Bill says to Miss Dove that he wants to use his saved money to complete his studies, she plainly hides her inner joy. Why? Clear: to show joy, even much time after the school-years, would mean to be partial toward her "William" (a delightful, even poetic subtlety is that Miss Dove never calls the kids by nick-name). However, at the hospital she finally affords herself to show a preference. She asks all her flowers to be distributed to the other patients, and she just takes in her room the flowers sent by her beloved, favorite "son" Bill.

    Miss Dove is a genius of psychology. The equal-for-all discipline is the canvas where she paints with masterly touches. She never preaches, her own behavior shows the right way. When she sees that the little Jewish Maurice is ill-used by the other kids, she doesn't utter a (probably useless) sermon on xenophobia. She just asks Maurice to accompany her, helping to bring her books, thus showing to everybody how much she cares for the little stranger. Then it's up to the kids to understand the lesson. This episode is related to a beautiful finesse of the movie. We see Mr. Levine, Maurice's father, terribly upset and worried at Miss Dove's illness. Thus we get that, less fortunate than his son, Mr. Levine has long experimented the horrors of anti-Semitism in Europe. So he is fully aware of and grateful for Miss Dove's precious job, even more than his son.

    Another great psychological job is the way Miss Dove, talking with Bill, praises Billie Jean's skills and humanity as a nurse. That's enough for Bill to learn the lesson, that is to overcome his prejudices (which coincide with her own prejudices; so, after all, even Miss Dove has something to learn). Particularly poignant is the shy, humble admiration and love paid by Billie Jean to her former teacher. That is mirrored by the nurse's naive attempts to imitate Miss Dove's elegant talk and perfect poise, which give rise both to fun and to emotion.

    Some characters are conventional, others are not fully convincing, like that of the gangster Makepeace. However, this guy is instrumental in showing that Miss Dove never condemns the human being. The film is permeated with positive messages: patriotism, dignity, respect, honor, love for learning, sense of community, gratitude. I will be the very last to be displeased by that. Sometimes the sentimentalism is far-fetched. I consider it a minor fault of the movie.

    Jennifer Jones as Miss Dove is just sensational. The remainder of the cast works very well, especially Peggy Knudsen as Billie Jean, in my opinion.

    Let me conclude remarking a great poetic image. The little girl, from the top of the tree she has climbed (a wonderful symbol of innocence and freedom), stares with a stunned look at Miss Dove carried away by the priest and the doctor. What's up? The indestructible teacher has something wrong? Impossible...

    Like the people of Liberty Hill, we all love Miss Dove, this wonderful woman, this mother of one thousand children. To enjoy this extraordinary character, I strongly recommend "Good morning, Miss Dove".
  • Warning: Spoilers
    We all had teachers who inspired us. Those who made us think and those who showed us acts of kindness. They were strict but memorable as is the case with 1955's Good Morning, Miss Dove.

    A small-town teacher who devoted her life to the education of children, Jennifer Jones turned in an absolutely brilliant performance in the title role.

    Of course, the town is unaware of Miss Dove's secret. As president of the bank, her father embezzled funds. To avoid a scandal when the father dies suddenly, Dove becomes a teacher to pay off the debt. Not only does she educate children in a stern way, her relationship with the town is memorable. Her saving of the town bank during a run on it, and her never ending criticism of people annoys many, but it is realized that she has done such good.

    When she falls ill with a tumor at the base of the spine, the town is in crisis. A former student, played by Robert Stack, operates.

    The effective use of flash-back is well used in this picture. It shows the life of the teacher and the effects she had on this town. The cop who adores her, her nurse who idolizes her, a Broadway playwright, who she guided when he was fresh out of Poland,and a former student, Freddie Makepiece, a jailbird, brings comic relief as well.

    Miss Dove deserved to be honored as teacher of the year in my book. The film deserves an accolade as well. The film is so good because it depicts what schools are supposed to be. To provide religious understanding and tolerance, our heroine brings her class to a Friday eve Jewish Sabbath meal. s This fine film is a testament to inculcating our value system. Jennifer Jones was absolutely superb here in her treatment of the beloved, strict but understanding Dove. In 1955, the same year this great film was made, Jennifer Jones was Oscar nominated for "Love is A Many Splendored Thing," she should have been nominated for 'Dove' instead. The picture must also be valued for the cohesiveness among the people of the town. What fine support Jones received. Robert Stack is wonderful as the doctor, her former student, who operates on her; as well as Peggy Knudsen, a fine practical nurse who adores her and at the same time harbors a secret; Chuck Connors, as the police officer, who Dove helped mold despite his poor background, only to reject Knudsen when he discovers her secret. Kipp Hamilton co-stars as the future wife of Stack, upset by a horrible experience she had, openly pours out her heart to Dove, in a very-well acted scene. Under the fine direction of Henry Koster, Miss Dove succeeds because it's a slice out of Americana.
  • I can't understand why this movie was never put on DVD or at least video. I haven't even seen it on the TV for years, but I have seen it a couple of times years ago. It is a touching story about a dedicated schoolteacher with a passion for teaching. Miss Dove is played by Jennifer Jones. A young Robert Stack is in the movie and there are some very touching moments.

    Too bad it wasn't on DVD. If you see it listed on TV. jump at the chance to watch it if you like classics, because this is one good classic. Keep a hanky handy.
  • Good Morning, Miss Dove is a property that I'm surprised Frank Capra didn't think to direct. It's entirely possible that Capra was a male chauvinist who only thought in terms of men who sacrifice like George Bailey in It's A Wonderful Life. In many ways Jennifer Jones is the superior of Capra's George Bailey.

    Jennifer's crisis comes real early in the beginning, she's the daughter of a well bred and prominent family whose father has just died. She thinks she's come into it, but she finds she's inherited debts beyond belief because dad was borrowing and living well beyond his means. To keep his good name, she gives up the life she expected like George Bailey and in the process becomes the moral center of her small town.

    Her road was much harder than Jimmy Stewart's because Miss Dove never married, she instead devoted her life to teaching history and geography and never getting to see the faraway places with strange sounding names that she only read about. That song could have been written for her. George Bailey did have Mary Bailey and the kids, that was denied to Miss Dove.

    That's just one of the flashbacks in a film that has many. In fact the current story is the fact this rock of the community is undergoing a health crisis and is admitted to the hospital. As she deals with her health issues and the many people who wish her well, her mind reflects on just how much influence she's had on generations of kids passing through her class.

    She's a severe woman Ms. Dove, having denied herself a personal life. But she's also a kind and caring one and that comes through with all the people we see her interact with.

    Despite a fine cast of players, Jennifer Jones dominates this film in a fine portrayal of what is essentially an unglamorous part. It's the kind of role you might see someone like Bette Davis or Katharine Hepburn do, but Jones is just fine in it.

    If you're not a fan of Jennifer Jones, you will be after seeing Good Morning, Miss Dove.
  • I only discovered this movie about 18 months ago when I saw it on TV. I really enjoyed it and have seen it a couple of times since. it is sentimental and very simple in its construction. That is not to say it is not emotionally effective. I am an ex-teacher who always had a good relationship with the kids I taught (though not as authoritarian as the Miss Dove of the title. Each time I see it I find myself more affected than the last time, to the extent of blubbing like a baby at every emotional scene!! It is a very dated movie and the performances, though honest and direct, are not Oscar-winning. I was surprised to see Chuck Connors do justice to his part as a hardworking cop who dragged himself up from poverty-stricken childhood to upstanding adulthood. Jennifer Jones, as the star of this film acquits herself well as Miss Dove, a fearsome and legendary primary school teacher. She is respected and loved by the people of the town (as she has taught most of them or their children). She is taken ill and through flashbacks we learn about her life, career and relationships. Movie-making as it used to be- not a blockbuster but a solid story well told.
  • I now know that they were definitely the biggest and best influences on my life as a young man. I watched this movie in tears most of the time, and yet enjoyed it immensely. Now I'll buy it for my own children and grandchildren - simply because when they reach old age, they too should look back and realize just how important {a good teacher} was to your life.

    A favorite moment - Miss Dove (referring to the town policeman, whom she -of course- had taught when he was a young student): "William Holloway started out with a gift rarer than mathematical genius or perfect pitch. A child in whom the ethical instinct was as innate as the function of breathing." A cop. He knew, he's always known - because of Miss Dove.

    God Bless You teachers, each & every one of you. It truly is - a calling.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    While not a big film, director Henry Koster again crafts a small gem of a person who shapes the lives of generations of students in her small town. Along with "Goodbye Mr. Chips" and Mr. Hollands Opus" this film is one of a handful of films that comes along once in a generation that leaves you feeling good and yet touched by the affection in the film. Under a stern and crusty exterior Miss Dove reflects on the course of her life as a teacher, when she is rushed to the hospital. Students come from everywhere to celebrate her and out of concern for her. It is the happy ending, like that in "Mr. Holland's Opus" and the mixture of humor and gentle drama of "Goodbye Mr. Chips" revisited and done well. I hope that it will eventually be available on DVD. I give it two thumbs up.
  • A well-known schoolteacher in a little American town is taken ill, and this causes her to reflect on her life. This unabashed 'weepie' from 20th Century Fox will catch you out unless you have a crisply-laundered hankie pinned to your lapel!

    Nine years after her sex-kitten role in "Lust In The Dust", Jennifer Jones pulls off a tour de force as the prim Miss Dove. Henry Koster's direction plays it straight down the middle in this simple yarn of small town life.

    Liberty Hill, we hear, is a typical American town. There are a hundred like it, in which "a sense of life's continuity hangs in the air". It is not clear whether the narrator is describing Liberty Hill as 'snug' or 'smug', but it doesn't matter - both adjectives apply. In Cedar Grove School a graduation ceremony is attended by parents who were themselves pupils here. This is the deep complacent sleep of Eisenhower's America, a world in which everybody has a pre-ordained place and the doctor, the policeman and the pastor are all ex-pupils of Miss Dove.

    It is seemingly a day like any other. Miss Dove is enforcing classroom discipline when she starts to fall ill. Typically, she instructs a child, "I am indisposed. Mention this to no-one."

    The stricken teacher looks back on her life in a series of reveries, starting with her happy youth in the 1920's. We see her as a beautiful, vivacious young woman who shares her father's passion for geography. The two plan an overseas vacation together, ensconced in their improbably lavish parlour which is only slightly smaller than the Houston Astrodome. It seems odd that Miss Dove's father should command such opulence, and after his death certain banking irregularities come to light. To prevent a slur on her father's memory, Miss Dove undertakes to work to pay back the 'debt'.

    Miss Dove places duty before personal happiness, declining Wolf Pendleton's offers of marriage and an expedition to the Himalayas, because she must teach here in Liberty Hill. The stiff, correct character of Miss Dove is illustrated by the way she remains formal until Wolf has left, then collapses in grief, and coming out of her daydream, composes herself as Doctor Tom Baker arrives. Public displays of weakness just won't do. "It is not my custom to wobble."

    Tom Baker (Robert Stack) is, of course, an alumnus of Miss Dove. The classroom undergoes minor changes over the years, but the American kids keep being churned out like little Ford Thunderbirds. China was coloured orange on the wall map ten years ago, now it's purple (the communist bloodbath?) and Eisenhower's portrait has replaced Truman's. But Miss Dove never alters. She enumerates her symptoms to Doc Baker like a talking medical textbook and as she is carried to hospital she assures him, "You have defined my responsibility. I shall keep my spine rigid." No-one doubts that.

    We meet various ex-pupils who have thrived under Miss Dove's tutelary genius. Bill Holloway (Chuck Connors) was an impoverished kid whose true worth was recognised by Miss Dove - " a child in whom the ethical instinct was as innate as breathing". He adores his former teacher. He is now a police officer. Virginia was a pretty but confused youngster until a year ago, when under Miss Dove's guidance she met and fell for Doc Baker. She has found her vocation in motherhood.

    Maurice Levine and Fred Makepeace turn up. Fred is now a gangster, but he's an OK kind of guy. He breaks out of prison to be with his teacher in her hour of need. Thanks to Miss Dove, his American morality is pristine: "When I hear some commie jerk belittling this country ..." Maurice first comes to Cedar Grove in the 1930's (the wall portrait is Roosevelt). He is a jewish child, freshly escaped from Hitler's Germany, and speaking no English. Miss Dove protects him from Liberty Hill's ingrained xenophobia and nurtures his literary talent. Single-handedly, she cures her class of antisemitism, and Maurice goes on to become a Broadway playwright.

    This lady's influence reaches beyond the school gates. Mr. Porter was the incoming Bank President who handled Miss Dove's father's indiscretion so unsympathetically. Now he visits her in hospital, an older, humbler man. "She's always been a stiff-necked termagant," he says, but confesses that he owes everything to her. In the Depression, she acted with courage and authority and averted a run on the Liberty Hill Bank.

    As for the film's weaknesses, the script is cast in a quaint literary style which grates. Nurse Green shows the cop into the room, announcing "Police Officer Holloway begs to intrude." The sentimentality is laid on too thickly. Doc Baker recounts how he survived shipwreck and thirst thanks to a shining vision of Miss Dove - "She was right there with me all the time!" The hushed crowds on the hospital steps are 'over the top'.

    The establishing shot of the colonial church's spire, repeated as the hours pass, reinforces the film's themes of parochialism and continuity. Ex-pupils donate blood, symbolising their ties to Miss Dove and the reciprocity of the relationship.

    The sick woman contemplates death and concludes that, whatever people may think, her life has been happy. The dreams of world travel were never realised, but she knows the world through study. Learning has compensated her for lost opportunities. This is a metaphor for her having sacrificed love and a family. Yet in the last 30 years, every child in Liberty Hill has been 'hers'. She has touched every young life. "Kids?" says Officer Holloway, "She has a thousand of 'em!"
  • Excellent entertainment guaranteed to get the weepy eyes out and the warm and fuzzies too. This movie reminds me of Goodbye Mr. Chips which was good but I thought they could have done more in that movie to stress the point of all the good Mr. Chips the teacher did. Here, they do just that via flashbacks which are highly entertaining and give good background to the story-telling. In a Twilight Zone episode titled "The Changing of the Guard", they also capture the theme of this movie quite well so if you like either example I gave you will love this movie as it takes its place among them. A couple of those flashbacks had me in tears as you realize that those people are you or someone you know who cannot only use a helping hand but also allow us all to contribute to a better world one person at a time. Who hasn't gotten to where they are today without help of some kind? Imagine if you turned that principal up a few notches. That's what is going on here only someone donates their life (literally) to the theme. Good investment by my tally. Good supporting cast too with familiar faces that became famous in their own time. The virtues acted out and displayed in this move are numerous. Humility, sacrifice, service, hope, charity, unconditional love, honesty and commitment all come on the screen throughout this movie and make their points. We are also reminded not to base everything we do solely on money outcomes but instead to invest in the bigger picture of life that build character and joins the everlasting properties into eternity. I am also reminded of the many who we don't hear about, who stay in the shadows doing their share of good happy to do so and going unnoticed for it but perfectly content and satisfied. Why? The simplest answer is found in a well known scripture that keeps teaching us this principal: When you did it to the least of them, you did it to me. I know you. Come forward faithful steward. That's all that counts in the end is that you are recognized by the one who sent you here just for that purpose. Good movie to snack with plus a tasty drink, Kleenex on standby and bring an open heart so your soul can be cleansed too. Enjoy! I did!
  • Miss Dove was my mother....well..., at the very least, she could have been.

    A second grade teacher for almost 30-years, she was responsible for profoundly impacting hundreds of children that now, have children of their own & some even grandchildren. Now deceased ('13), she retired in '98 & spent the next 15-years investing her life into the lives of my son & daughter (both, now young adults).

    Over the years, theres no telling just how many, parents, relatives, friends & former students that, have shared, their deepest & most personal of affections & appreciation (to me & my brothers), for the impact & role that, their 2nd Grade teacher played, in shaping their formidable years.

    Perhaps only one in hundreds of teachers, should ever truly be considered the caliber of a 'Miss Dove' (or perhaps one in thousands). Nevertheless, In large part, teaching isn't for the faint of heart, especially elementary education, and not only is the profession of early-age-educators a tedious proposition, but the rewards are often intrinsic, rarely monetary & they offer little, if any, genuine respect (as a profession).

    This was indeed a great film, brilliantly written, meticulously directed, extraordinarily acting & a great tribute film, to all the legitimate, wonderful Miss' Dove's that, without promise of fame or fortune, selflessly poured their love & life, into so many beautiful children.
  • This is a typically safe 50s film from a more safer world than we have today.It is unashamedly nostalgic as Miss Doves life is recalled in flashbacks. However I can,t help feeling that it is a 2nd hand Goodbye Mr Chips which was magnificently portrayed by Robert Donat. It even steals the punchline from the end of Mr chips about never having had children. Having said that it is comfortable Sunday afternoon viewing with a few strong moments.
  • "Good Morning, Miss Dove" is a very episodic movie in which Jennifer Jones plays the title character, a robot teacher. She clearly IS a robot as she talks with zero inflection and sounds about as human as Gort.

    When the film begins, the 60-something Miss Dove is teaching her students in a manner that is rigid and joyless. Soon, she begins experiencing medical symptoms and she has one of her students fetch a doctor. Then, throughout the film, Miss Dove experiences a lot of flashbacks--not because of an illness or the ingestion of hallucinogens but because it's all supposed to be inspiring. The one I particularly liked was the first, as it explained why Miss Dove went into teaching...though I would have preferred a flashback in which you saw her creator assembling her from vacuum tubes and bits of metal.

    If it sounds like I wasn't thrilled about the film, you are right! There have been a lot of better films about dedicated teachers and Jones' performance was a HUGE deficit of the movie. She seemed almost inhuman and softening her character a bit (so that she'd be less zombie-like) would have improved the picture considerably. It's a shame, as some of the flashbacks are quite enjoyable and the film in not without merit. I liked the various supporting characters and their stories.

    My overall score is 5. If they had done something to humanize Miss Dove more and make her the least bit realistic, they film could have earned a much higher score.
  • baker-9199617 February 2020
    Growing up in the '50s, I was fortunate to have teachers like Miss Dove. I hope I was such a teacher myself in later years.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Some reviewers characterize Jennifer Jones' Miss Dove as an aloof robot, devoid of any humanity, and unrealistic. It's certainly easy to agree with this point of view, at the superficial level. Clearly, one of her goals in life is to seem omnipotent in knowledge and graces, and to instill this attitude in her students by example. But, she is not quite unique in this respect. I had a high school teacher who closely resembled Jennifer's characterizations. She was universally respected by her students, but also feared and hated by those not willing nor able to live up to her high standards. To those, she was an unfeeling witch. I suspect that there were those students of Miss Dove who also fell into that category. Like Miss Dove, this teacher was a spinster, who had given up the possibility of an adventurous life with a suitor, and the likelihood of children for a role she considered more important: a chance to indoctrinate a lifetime of children with her knowledge, love of knowledge, and graces. At least outwardly, she refused to have 'pet' students who took her goals seriously. Some came back many years later for advice.

    I wonder whether the name Dove is intended to have symbolic meaning? Doves in particular, or sometimes other birds are often symbolic of certain attributes. Among the traditional possibilities are innocence, gentleness, peace, freedom to fly wherever(mostly via books in her case), a link between heaven and earth(as the Holy Spirit, for example), love and fidelity. Perhaps you can see several of these attributes applying to Miss Dove.

    One feature of the film you may find confusing is the frequent switching back and forth between the present and past. I counted 10 such incidents. Keeps you awake keeping up with the changes.

    The film climax occurs at the end, when her former student Dr. Baker rushes in to her hospital room to tell that his wife(also a former student) had just given birth to twins: 2 more prospective students of Miss Dove. And, oh yes, her biopsy had just been reported as negative. Church bells through out the town clanged and a crowd had gathered under her window to wish her well: the 'terrible' Miss Dove.
  • American small towns don't come much cosier than Liberty Hill, the setting for this very old-fashioned weepie. Peyton Place it ain't. Jennifer Jones is the spinsterish school ma rm who rules with a rod of iron but who has a heart of gold and the movie tells us, in flashbacks, how she got that way. As an old lady, Jones is stiff and awkward and you hope that in the flashbacks she might be given the chance to blossom but this is a one-dimensional performance and she's as bad as an only half-decent actress can be when cast against type.

    As to the film itself, it's a handsome looking picture thanks largely to Leon Shamroy's excellent wide-screen photography but it's directed by that leaden ham Henry Koster. Koster's idea of movie-making was to make sure his characters remained in frame and remembered their lines. Fifteen minutes into this highly sentimental film you know the entire plot. Whether you want to hang around for the next ninety or so minutes will depend on your propensity for sucrose.
  • It's like watching a really bad middle school play with worse middle school actors. Too slow and too dull to keep watching. I got as far as "Boy, am I paying my debt to society." That was plenty.
  • It feels like it should have been about an hour shorter and I only watched the last hour because I already had time invested. It's a bit corny, however the acting is decent and it's tolerable to watch but if you just started watching it and are reading reviews here to figure out what to do, I would personally skip it.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Copyright 1955 by 20th Century-Fox Film Corp. New York opening at the Roxy: 23 November 1955. U.S. release: November 1955. U.K. release: 25 June 1956. Australian release: 12 April 1956. Sydney opening at the Regent. 9,644 feet. 107 minutes.

    SYNOPSIS: The story takes place in a small New England town where a generation of its people has been exposed to the same teacher, Miss Dove (Jennifer Jones). This morning on her walk to the schoolhouse as she had done every day for 35 years Miss Dove passes the house of Dr. Thomas Baker (Robert Stack) and his lovely, but pregnant, wife Jincey (Kipp Hamilton). As she walks down the street Mr. Porter ( Robert Douglas ), the banker, Rev. Alexander Burnham (Biff Elliott) and all the townspeople set their watches by the punctual Miss Dove. In the geography room she collapses with a spinal attack and while she is waiting for help her memory goes back to the day she was 19 and learned that her father had "borrowed" $10,000 from the bank he headed as president. It was then she decided to turn her back on romance and dedicate her life to teaching and paying back the money.

    NOTES: Fox's 44th CinemaScope release was only moderately successful in the U.S.A. and did virtually no business at all in England. In Australia, on the other hand, the picture was a smash hit.

    COMMENT: Not my cup of tea. A female version of "Goodbye, Mr. Chips", acted with such all stops out sentimentality by Jennifer Jones that some members of the cast (notably and most disappointingly Robert Douglas) don't even bother to compete. Worse still, it's all directed in a studiously dull fashion by Henry Koster. In my view, this movie is strictly suitable for Jennifer Jones fans only.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Love of teaching is a many splendored thing for spinster teacher Jennifer Jones in this enjoyable, if simplistic drama. There's no blackboard jungle or up staircase, no thugs threatening her or student obsessively in love with her. Those plot points would be more potent in darker dramas, so this is somewhat old fashioned in its themes. Her students of the past and present rally around when her seemingly cold, by the books educator is suddenly hospitalized. Jones is seen in flashbacks going from 19 to 58, and it's surprising how she manages to go nearly 40 years, keeping in character, and stay true to who Miss Dove is.

    More a character study than a film with a serious linear plot, this is Ms. Jones' film all the way, and as aggravating as her character is with her business like attitude, you can't help but identify with her. She sticks by her value of propriety and never slips from that. Yes, she's a cold lady most of the time, but underneath, you know she only wants the best for each of these children and is always open to visits from old students who seem to confide in her their most intimate secrets. One of them is Robert Stack, a hero returning from war, her obvious pride and joy, and now her doctor. Mary Wickes and Richard Deacon are a funny pair as fellow teachers enamored of each other. But this is all about Miss Dove, and the little bits here and there about other characters often seems less than secondary.