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Sarah and Son

Released Mar 14, 1930 1h 26m Drama List
Reviews 25% Audience Score 50+ Ratings A woman (Ruth Chatterton) tries to regain custody of her son after her husband sells him to a wealthy couple. Read More Read Less

Critics Reviews

View All (1) Critics Reviews
Emanuel Levy EmanuelLevy.Com Ruth Chatterton was nominated for the Best Actress Oscar for this soapish melodrama, made by Dorothy Arzner, the only female director in the studio era. Rated: C+ Jan 10, 2011 Full Review Read all reviews

Audience Reviews

View All (5) audience reviews
Louisa E This movie was a drag! The plot was so implausible, and there was nothing I could tell the film was trying to say, except maybe a bond between mother and child is unbreakable, but the way they did this was blah. I didn't enjoy the acting, and I believed Ruth was from another country. But her accent was so thick that I couldn't understand what she was saying. It seemed so unnecessary for her to have the accent! The sound, in general, was poor. There was nothing special about the design or cinematography elements. Honestly, I checked out of this movie early on, probably more so than any other film I've watched on this journey. The ending was laughable, and I wanted the movie to end about 15 minutes in. Was it worth an Oscar Nom-Nom? An emphatic no. Rated 2 out of 5 stars 05/08/23 Full Review Audience Member Ruth Chatterton was an early talkie leading lady who could play sappy or hard luck heroines suffered or made people around them suffer. She's an Austrian immigrant who performs vaudeville with her no good husband. When he disappears, selling their son into adoption, she spends years searching for him to find more heartbreak as she finds personal success as an opera singer. Fredric March plays the attorney who tries to help her. Chatterton's accent can be a bit much at times, and it may be hard for people to stay interested with basic cinematography, but Chatterton tries to rise above the pathos of the material. There are enough lavish moments covering the period from Pre WW 1 to present day but the vaudeville sequences are sad. Chatterton is better when her accent starts to dwindle with time. Rated 3 out of 5 stars 02/08/23 Full Review steve d completely ridiculous. Rated 1 out of 5 stars 03/30/23 Full Review Audience Member Sticky sweet and stiff as a board, of interest mainly to see a very young Fredric March. Rated 1 out of 5 stars 02/27/23 Full Review Audience Member The story of "Sarah and Son" offers nothing new. You can see that kind of story in hundreds of pre code-movies. But since "Sarah and Son" has Ruth Chatterton as the leading actress, this movie is different. She alone makes it memorable. Sarah Storm (Ruth Chatterton with the most wonderful, heavy German accent), an Austrian Actress who tries to make it in the USA, marries her stage partner Jim (Fuller Mellish). Jim turns out lazy and not keen on work. So Sarah is responisble to feed her boy and her blow-fly of a husband. She decides to take her kid and leave her husband, but Jim is faster and sells his son to a rich couple and becomes a Marine himself. Sarah is a broken woman without her son, and she never stops searching for him. After a while she finds Jim, deadly wounded and willing to tell her the name of the family, who bought her boy. Sarah now knows the truth, but rich people are powerful, they threaten her and offer to get her locked up as insane. The only person on her side, is the lawyer Howard Vanning (Frederic March). Ruth Chatterton's fake, heavy German accent is wonderful. And she sings a famous German lullaby "Guten Abend, guten Nacht". I found her performance very touching, but maybe because my Mom and Gran used to sing that song for me. I wonder, if Ruth Chatterton performed that song herself? In the final scene, Ruth Chatterton reminds me of Theda Bara. Yes, I said Theda Bara. When she stands there, with her long hair open, in a big robe, her eyes dark, big, desperate and piercing. She is small and nearly disappears in her robe, still she frightens everyone. Rated 4 out of 5 stars 02/04/23 Full Review Read all reviews
Sarah and Son

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Cast & Crew

Movie Info

Synopsis A woman (Ruth Chatterton) tries to regain custody of her son after her husband sells him to a wealthy couple.
Dorothy Arzner
Zoe Akins, Timothy Shea
Paramount Pictures
Production Co
Paramount Pictures
Original Language
Release Date (Theaters)
Mar 14, 1930, Original
1h 26m