All the films from all the editions, including those subsequently removed, presently totalling 1167. An easy way of seeing how…
Mr. Smith Goes to Washington
Romance, drama, laughter and heartbreak... created out of the very heart and soil of America!
Naive and idealistic Jefferson Smith, leader of the Boy Rangers, is appointed on a lark by the spineless governor of his state. He is reunited with the state's senior senator--presidential hopeful and childhood hero, Senator Joseph Paine. In Washington, however, Smith discovers many of the shortcomings of the political process as his earnest goal of a national boys' camp leads to a conflict with the state political boss, Jim Taylor. Taylor first tries to corrupt Smith and then later attempts to destroy Smith through a scandal.
Infused with patriotism, exhibiting excellent use of humour & starring James Stewart in the role that instantly propelled the then-young actor into the spotlight, Frank Capra's Mr. Smith Goes to Washington is another quality product from the notable filmmaker that skilfully presents its support of democracy & is now counted amongst the great American films of its era.
Mr. Smith Goes to Washington follows the political adventures of Jefferson Smith; leader of The Boy Rangers who is appointed by the State Governor to fill a vacancy in the US Senate after the untimely death of the previous Senator. Young, naive & idealistic, Smith discovers an entirely different world on his arrival to Washington & soon decides to stand up against corruption.
Directed by Frank…
In the middle of Mr Smith Goes to Washington, our overenthusiastic but lovable protagonist Jefferson Smith has this to say:
Liberty's too precious a thing to be buried in books, Miss Saunders. Men should hold it up in front of them every single day of their lives and say: I'm free to think and to speak. My ancestors couldn't, I can, and my children will. Boys ought to grow up remembering that.
That's beautiful. That piece of dialogue right there convinced me once and for all that Frank Capra's film had its heart in the right place. After that, I dropped all my doubts and allowed the film's over-optimistic but admirable sentiments to wash over me.
It's worth noting that…
As timely today as it was 75 years ago, Frank Capra's "Mr. Smith Goes to Washington" is an enchanting political fairy tale. Instead of knights jousting with dragons, the film finds idealistic senators taking on corruption in government. The film is painted in broad narrative and thematic strokes, but it is a pleasing, entertaining piece of work whose delights are many.
Jefferson Smith, appointed by his state's governor to serve in the US Senate, is the focus of the film. In Washington, Smith is floored by the American seat of power both in terms of the city's history and its obstinate governing bodies. The corruption is thick here and at home, and Smith soon finds himself fighting against the political…
Film #27 of Project 30
”Dad always used to say the only causes worth fighting for were the lost causes.”
In his first major cinematic role the mighty James Stewart uses his incredible talent to portray the passionate and idealistic Jefferson Smith whose innocence and determination enable him to stand up and fight the corruption, dishonesty and deceitfulness of the villainous senators, Mr. Smith Goes to Washington is the typical Frank Capra movie, a heart-warming, idealistic and feel-good story filled with hope, faith and courage. It is an inspiring and cheerful celebration of bravery and character strength which at times becomes very affective and emotionally stimulating too, Jimmie Stewart’s performance is sensational and the film gives a pretty good –…
Politics for the naive with James Stewart's first legendary performance! Wouldn't have been as effective without the heavies he was up against, so massive kudos to Edward Arnold, Claude Rains & Guy Kibbee trying to break this young senators down. But Stewart and his gullible persona was so perfect for the spirit of this film. All heart against the high and mighty senators with undeniable assistance from Jean Arthur. A wonderful battle!
Mr. Smith Goes to Washington may have been filmed in black and white, but it very clearly plays in red, white, and blue. This story of a naïve young patriot who is brought to Washington to be a patsy for some corrupt senators should have been a very miserable experience for me, what with its loving tongue-bath to the glory of America, however, it never once felt like the jingoistic mess it could have been. A big part of this is because the film doesn't assault you with patriotic ideals so much as it expresses them in an endearing, “aw shucks” kind of way. To this end, James Stewart is perfect in the title role,…
Never have didactic, dialectical proofs of patriotism been so sincere or so convincing. The lofty ideal is constantly contrasted with the on-the-ground real, naive faith with weary cynicism, and somehow--almost miraculously--pragmatic cynicism is what starts to seem fake. After all, all those corrupt politicians and hateful journalists are living among buildings and monuments which have stood for generations, and Mr. Smith comes from a region where the peace and beauty of nature are free and evident for everyone to enjoy. (Note that Smith already knows the skills of the land [bird calls, Indian signs]--the film is his education in the skills of politics.) The American land itself bears the ideals of liberty and honest democratic government marked upon and within…
An absolute classic picture. The best performance of Jimmy Stewart's career and by far the most fully American movie ever made. For classic cinema, its an absolute must.
It would not be inappropriate to label Frank Capra's Mr. Smith Goes to Washington as a political fairy tale; a naive and idealistic look at the American political system. Yet doing so is a bit short-sighted, I think, given Capra's body of work. More on that in a moment.
For its merits as a film, Mr. Smith is one of the more accomplished films of Capra's career, with a strong ensemble and great dialogue throughout the picture. There aren't many locations in the film, with the bulk of the piece taking place in the Senate chamber once Mr. Smith's filibuster begins in earnest. Despite this, Capra doesn't let his camera become a static one, almost feverishly cutting to reaction shots…
AFI has it right: This is one of the best films of the 20th Century. Interesting to note how much Washington hated it when it came out even going so far as to call it "Un-American." Guess they didn't like being portrayed as compromised stooges.
And what is it about 1939?! Gone With The Wind, Wizard of Oz, Stagecoach, Love Affair, Wuthering Heights, Mr. Smith... what was in the water that year?
Tip: If you want to watch some great movies from this era, look for Jean Arthur in the cast. I just randomly watched 4 with her and they're all entertaining. This one, Mr. Deeds Goes to Town, You Can't Take It With You, The More The Merrier, and Only Angels Have Wings. All worth a watch.
"All in favor say DIE."
Frank Capra doing what he does best. Such a wonderful classic and i think its Stewart's finest performance. I loved this one.
Fabulous. Doe eyed young man gets a slice of reality when he finds himself in DC and he surprises them all by not being as stupid as he looks.
I appreciate that it's a very early satire of the American political process, but it's so corny and of its time that I couldn't get into it. Occasionally it raised a smile as James Stewart naively wandered from his office to pop his eyeballs back in his head after falling in love with the big city, but these laughs were few and far between. I've not seen many Frank Capra films, but I'd rank it quite far below both It's A Wonderful Life and It Happened One Night.
About as subtle as a sledgehammer wrapped in an American flag. Capra takes another whack at distilling the American myth into a 2 hour movie, and it mostly almost kinda works, thanks to Jimmy Stewart. Stewart is the only actor I can think of who could have taken Smith’s Gee-whiz American enthusiasm and make it seem like there was a living, breathing human behind it. Because it’s impossible not to root for Jimmy Stewart, we also buy into the frustration, the injustice of his predicament. Another major asset for the movie is Claude Rains, who is increasingly becoming a favorite of mine. That being said, the pill is just a bit too much to swallow, and long stretches of the movie devolve into mindless moralizing.
Every film that has ever been nominated for an Academy Award in any category. Enjoy!