This Land Is Mine (1943) - Rotten Tomatoes

This Land Is Mine (1943)

This Land Is Mine




Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

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Movie Info

Written by Dudley Nichols and directed by French expatriate director Jean Renoir, This Land is Mine is one of those "inspirational" wartime dramas that just don't hold up too well when seen today. The scene is an unnamed European country, recently overrun by the Nazis (this takes place during a "silent" opening sequence that's the best thing in the film). Charles Laughton plays Albert Lory, a mama's-boy schoolmaster who is the object of his students' ridicule. A craven coward, Lory is held responsible when resistance fighter Paul Martin (Kent Smith), the brother of beauteous teacher Louise Martin (Maureen O'Hara), is executed by the Nazis, though in fact it was Lory's panic-stricken mother (Una O'Connor) who betrayed Paul by informing on him to his friend and collaborator George Lambert (George Sanders).more
Rating: Unrated
Genre: Drama, Classics
Directed By:
Written By: Dudley Nichols
In Theaters:
On DVD: Jul 28, 1990
Franco London Films


Charles Laughton
as Albert Lory
Maureen O'Hara
as Louise Martin
George Sanders
as George Lambert
Walter Slezak
as Major Von Keller
Kent Smith
as Paul Martin
Una O'Connor
as Mrs. Emma Lory
Philip Merivale
as Prof. Sorel
Thurston Hall
as Mayor Henry Manville
George Coulouris
as Prosecuting Attorney
Nancy Gates
as Julie Grant
John Donat
as Edmund Lorraine
Frank Alten
as Lt. Schwartz
Leo Bulgakov
as Little Man
Wheaton Chambers
as Mr. Lorraine
Cecil Weston
as Mrs. Lorraine
Ludwig Donath
as German Captain
Lillian O'Malley
as Woman in Street
Gordon Clark
as Lieutenant
Hans Moebus
as German Chauffeur
Gabriel Lenoff
as German Lieutenant
Gordon B. Clark
as Lieutenant
Philip Ahlm
as German Lieutenant
Albert D'Arno
as German Soldier
Rudolph Myzet
as German Soldier
Lester Sharpe
as German Soldier
Sven Hugo Borg
as German Soldier
Nicholas Vehr
as German Soldier
Russell Hoyt
as German Soldier
Walter Thiele
as German Soldier
Louis Arno
as German Sergeant
Bob Stevenson
as German Sergeant
Hans Schumm
as German Sergeant
John Banner
as German Sergeant
George Sorel
as German Sergeant
Gus Taillon
as Newsman
Edward McNamara
as Policeman
Otto Hoffman
as Printer
Hans Von Morhart
as Soldier Who Gets Sla...
John Dilson
as Mayor's Secretary
George MacQuarrie
as Chief of Police
Tommy Bond
as Julian
John Rice
as Burly Cop
Jack Shea
as Burly Cop
Ida Shoemaker
as Woman in Street
Joan Barclay
as Young Woman
Mildred Hardy
as Old Woman
Margaret Fealy
as Old Woman
Lloyd Ingraham
as Paper Man in Street
Hallene Hill
as Woman at Window
Mary Stuart
as Photo Double
George Carleton
as Jury Foreman
Hal Malone
as Bit in Courtroom
Show More Cast

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Critic Reviews for This Land Is Mine

All Critics (8) | Top Critics (4)

Jean Renoir's 1943 film has its passionate defenders; the unfortunate thing, though, is that it needs them.

Full Review… | May 8, 2007
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

One of his quietest and least startling.

Full Review… | June 24, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

It should have been stronger drama than it is. But for the points it does make and its concept of man as a continuing vessel for freedom's fire, it is certainly well worth seeing. It comes close, even if doesn't quite hit the mark.

Full Review… | March 25, 2006
New York Times
Top Critic

Full Review… | March 26, 2009
Top Critic

Fails to be as inspirational when viewed today as it probably was during its day.

Full Review… | August 22, 2007
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

It moves along like a well-oiled machine until the devestating final act ties all of the smaller stories together, making it's point without being overbearing or obvious.

Full Review… | December 30, 2006

Audience Reviews for This Land Is Mine

In "This Land Is Mine," lonely schoolteacher Albert(Charles Laughton, who is superb) finds there is something more frightening than his domineering mother(Una O'Connor) when the Nazis occupy his village. As usual, his students do not respect him, even though his fellow schoolteacher Louise(Maureen O'Hara), who he has a crush on, is kind to him but then she is engaged to George(George Sanders), the manager of the railyards where her brother Paul(Kent Smith) works. Regardless, Albert and Louise follow orders and tear out pages in the history books that do not correspond with the Nazis' narrow view of history. Major von Keller(Walter Slezak) just wants everything to be business as usual but then there is a suspicious accident at the railyards...

On the surface, there are certain similarities between "This Land Is Mine" and Jean Renoir's previous "Grand Illusion" about camaraderie between supposed enemies. In the six years between the films, the world had changed radically(not to mention the films are about different wars) and while the Nazis in "This Land Is Mine" might at first seem polite and urbane(von Keller certainly knows his Latin), the villagers should never view them as friends, as food shortages and censorship are only the beginning, much worse being hinted at. What Renoir has on his mind is not a recruitment film, but more a call to arms of sorts against tyranny of all shapes and sizes that displays more than one form of courage.(Ostensibly, the movie is set in France but it could be anywhere.) All of which is handled in a nuanced style and is well-filmed, especially its opening shot and two action sequences. While the movie might follow a familiar trajectory with a climactic speech, it is a perfectly eloquent speech.

Walter M.

Super Reviewer

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