The Inn of the Sixth HappinessDirector: Mark Robson
Alan Burgess' novel The Small Woman was the source for the British/American co-production Inn of the Sixth Happiness. Set in the China of the 1930s, the film stars Ingrid Bergman as real-life missionary Gladys Aylward. Against the advice of practically everyone, Gladys heads into the war-ravaged interior to spread the Christian gospel. She finds a powerful ally in the form of an elderly Mandarin (Robert Donat) who, despite his early efforts to rid himself of the troublesome Gladys, eventually converts to Christianity. Gladys' burgeoning romance with Chinese army officer Lin Nan (Curt Jurgens) is interrupted when she is obliged to guide a group of Chinese children to safety over some of the most treacherous of Northern China's mountain regions. Inn of the Sixth Happiness retains its entertainment value some four decades after its production, even allowing for the preponderance of Occidental actors in Oriental roles. The film also served to breathe new life into the old children's nonsense song "This Old Man" (aka "Knick, Knack, Paddywhack").
- Release Date:
- Original Release:
- 20th Century Fox
Cast & Crew
|Ingrid Bergman||Gladys Aylward|
|Curd Jurgens||Capt. Lin Nan|
|Ronald Squire||Sir Francis Jamison|
|Noel Hood||Miss Thompson|
|Athene Seyler||Mrs. Lawson|
|Moultrie Kelsall||Dr. Robinson|
|Richard Wattis||Mr. Murfin|
|Michael David||Ho Ka|
|Tsai Chin||One of the oldest children?|
|Lin Chen||Innkeeper's Wife|
|Andre Mikhelson||Russian Commissar|
|Stanislaw Mikulski||Russian Conductor|
|Ronald Lee||Chief Muleteer|
|Danny Arnold||Musical Direction/Supervision|
|Malcolm Arnold||Score Composer,Musical Direction/Supervision|
|John Box||Art Director|
|Geoffrey Drake||Art Director|
|Cecil F. Ford||Production Manager|
|Margaret Furse||Costumes/Costume Designer|
|Bob Walker||Camera Operator|
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
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'The Inn of the Sixth Happiness' is the fictional account of Gladys Aylward (Ingrid Bergman), a woman of no formal education whose only great desire in life is to become a Christian missionary in China. After much set back and rejection, Gladys makes it to a tiny Mandarin province, presided over by Yang Cheng (Robert Donat). Eager to rid his province of this English woman, Cheng gives Gladys a seemingly impossible task to perform as his foot inspector. However, when Gladys shows remarkable foresight and resilience in her duties, a strange and compelling bond and friendship between the two ensue. This would be Robert Donat¿s final film. He was greatly ailing from cancer during its production and his on screen farewell with Bergman seems to hits a sublimely poignant note. As the threat of warring factions begins to grow, Gladys succumbs to a romance with Lin Yan (Curt Jurgens) who advises Gladys to get out before its too late. She does but not without rescuing a small army of children to the British missionary post where she is, at long last, welcomed with open arms. This is a lush and lavishly produced romantic epic that really holds its own. Bergman excels as the somewhat backward Gladys who finds within herself a reason to live and thereafter, achieves great things through vigilance and determination. This is a film I remember first seeing on late night television some ten years ago. Of course then it was not in widescreen and its color negative had been ravaged by time and neglect. FOX Home Video has done an OUTSTANDING JOB on this reissue. The film is presented in its proper Cinemascope aspect ratio and looks years younger. Colors are rich, well balanced and incredible vivid. Black levels are strong. Edge enhancement, aliasing and pixelization or rarely seen. Contrast levels are strong. There is an incredible amount of fine detail rendered throughout, even during the darkest scenes. WOW! After such a stunning video presentation the audio falls a little short of expectations. It's NOT 5.1 but Stereo Surround and, at times, suffers from a muffled characteristic. But again, it is a complete improvement over the state that this film has usually been seen in. Here's my only beef with this disc - NO EXTRAS - save an audio commentary and movietones trailer. Come on, Fox! A film worthy enough of being in your 'Studio Series' deserves at least a making-of featurette or biography on Ingrid Bergman!
Ingrid Bergman is good and very well known. However this movie is also one more showcase for a very talented actor who died much too young, Robert Donat. Curt Jurgens is also a very unrated actor, who I would like to see more of.
I liked this movie because it gives a glimpse of Chinese history that is strictly about a village. We get so many movies about the government or philosophy but few about the people or small villages in the outskirts of China. I like hearing about strong female personalities who buck the trend.
What makes this movie so moving is that although the main character, a British woman, went to a remote location in China to promote Christianity, her love and concern for the Chinese people resulted in assisting them in various difficult social, political and dangerous situations simply because of the respect she had earned through her service.
If you are looking for an inspirational faith-based movie, this is one of the best of all times...based on the true story of Gladys Aylward, a British Christian who felt God calling her to China. When the director of China Mission in the U.K. says she is not qualified to be a missionary, Gladys works as a servant to save money to travel to China. Set mainly in a remote province of China just before & during WWII, the movie follows Gladys as she is transformed from the foreigner, to the Manchurian's Foot Inspector, to eventually earning her local name "Jenai" - the one who loves. This is an outstanding inspirational movie of faith, love and perseverance in hardship - and what miraculous things God can do with a willing, compassionate heart committed to Him. Excellent acting by Ingrid Bergman, Robert Donat et all... wonderful ending that leaves me crying & cheering every time. HIGHLY RECOMMEND (have given as gifts many times to friends & family!!)
The first time I saw this movie, I was a teenager. I never forgot it. I was astonished to learn what the Chinese women went through when binding their feet. Ingrid Bergman was outstanding in her role.
Taking a break from his directing duties in Sweden, Ingmar Bergman plays a novice nun in this breakthrough production of THE INN OF THE SIXTH SENSE. Unhappy with the day-to-day tasks that befall a missionary in China, Ingmar takes a holiday in Rome where she meets an American photo-journalist--played by Gregory Peck--and falls in love. He transforms her from a shy and rather plain girl into the toast of Italy. After a surprise visit by Peggy Wood, Ingmar is blamed for her accidental death. But everything turns out okay and the entire cast reunites for a spectacular rendition of the Cole Porter song ANYTHING GOES.