The World Changes (1933)





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Movie Info

This well-wrought drama chronicles the rise and fall of a midwestern family dynasty from the mid 1800s through the Great Depression. Most of the tale centers on a young Dakota farm boy whose grand schemes and ambition lead him on a cattle drive to Texas. From there he hooks up with the owner of a major Chicago slaughterhouse and then falls in love with his new partner's beautiful daughter. They marry and after the youth figures out how to use refrigerated train cars to ship his beef, begin living the lives of the nouveau riche. When his partner dies, he leaves the young man his considerable fortune making him an instant meat-packing magnate. With a good wife, two beautiful children and a terrific home, life for him couldn't be better. Unfortunately, his self-centered wife is discontent. Thinking her husband's profession is preventing her from becoming a true society dame, she begins badgering him to selling the meat business and becoming a more respectable stockbroker. Unfortunately, her attempted machinations fall on deaf ears and the resulting frustration drives her insane. The tycoon's son has his own troubles with his beautiful blue-blooded wife and brokerage business that is destroyed when the market crashes in 1929. His father, who did eventually sell the meat business and invest in his son' brokerage, is also nearly wiped out. In order to support his wife and save face, the son begins embezzling. Unfortunately he gets caught. When he learns that his own wife has betrayed him, the despondent youth is beyond help and tragedy ensues for both the son and his elderly father.
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Warner Bros.


Paul Muni
as Orin
Mary Astor
as Virginia
Donald Cook
as Richard
Patricia Ellis
as Natalie
Jean Muir
as Selma Peterson
Margaret Lindsay
as Jennifer
Guy Kibbee
as Claflin
Alan Dinehart
as Ogden Jarrett
Henry O'Neill
as Orin Nordholm
Anna Q. Nilsson
as Mrs. Peterson
Douglas Dumbrille
as Buffalo Bill
Clay Clement
as Capt. Custer
Alan Mowbray
as Sir Phillip
William Janney
as Orin II
Marjorie Gateson
as Mrs. Clinton
Arthur Hohl
as Patten
Sidney Toler
as Hodgens
Mickey Rooney
as Young Otto Peterson
Jackie Searl
as Young John
Oscar Apfel
as Morley
Wallis Clark
as Freddie
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Critic Reviews for The World Changes

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Audience Reviews for The World Changes

Tries to tell too much story in the time allowed.

jay nixon
jay nixon

Super Reviewer


Excellent story, and the incredible Paul Muni gives yet another outstanding performance. Mary Astor and Aline MacMahon give fine support. Great pace, always interesting. A fine classic.

James Higgins
James Higgins

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