The Proud Valley (1940)

Genres - Drama  |   Sub-Genres - Musical Drama  |   Release Date - Apr 6, 1940 (USA - Unknown)  |   Run Time - 77 min.  |   Countries - UK  |  
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Proud Valley was directed by Pen Tennyson, whose early death in WW2 robbed the British movie industry of one of its more talented contributors. African American singing star Paul Robeson heads the cast as David, a black stoker seeaking work in the coal mines of Wales. He finds an ally in the form of miner Dick Parry (Edward Chapman), who is less interested in David's capacity for work than he is in the newcomer's robust baritone. It seems that Parry is in charge of the local miner's choir, and he hopes to win the national singing meet on the strength of David's vocal chords. An unexpected disaster not only puts an end to this dream, but also threatens to financially wipe out Parry, his family and all his friends. It is David who comes to everyone's rescue with a spectacular, near-messianic act of self-sacrifice. Though it seems somewhat flat when seen today, Proud Valley is enervated by the commanding presence of Paul Robeson.

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Keywords

choir, coal, courage, danger, disaster, employment, hero, killing, mine, rescue, sacrifice, self-sacrifice, starvation, town, voice [speaking]