The Mortal Storm

The Roths lead a quiet life in a small village in the German Alps. When the Nazis come to power, the family is divided and a family friend is caught up in the turmoil.
The Mortal Storm
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Format:  DVD-R
item number:  FFA4
Also released as:

DVD Features:

  • Rated: Not Rated
  • Run Time: 1 hours, 40 minutes
  • Video: Black & White
  • Released: October 20, 2009
  • Originally Released: 1940
  • Label: Warner Archive Collection (MOD)
  • Encoding: Region 0 (Worldwide)
  • Aspect Ratio: Full Frame
  • Audio:
    • English

Performers, Cast and Crew:

Starring , , &
Performer: , , &
Directed by
Edited by
Screenplay by , &
Composition by
Art Direction by
Produced by &
Director of Photography:

Memorable Quotes and Dialog:

"I've never prized safety, either for myself or my children. I've prized courage."
  - oppressed German Professor Roth (FRANK MORGAN)

Entertainment Reviews:


Total Count: 8


User Ratings: 1,105
Rating: 7/10 -- THE MORTAL STORM (1940) is a jaw-dropper about when Fascism comes to a village in Germany. Full Review
Mark Leeper's Reviews
Dec 8, 2019
Rating: 4/4 -- Romance becomes the irritant and, effectively, Borzage positions his romanticism as a contribution to Hollywood's anti-fascist crusade. Full Review
Slant Magazine
Nov 14, 2003
Rating: B -- This was the first Hollywood film to so openly and boldly cast aspersions on the Nazi oppression. Full Review
Ozus' World Movie Reviews
Aug 3, 2009
...A still-powerful portrayal of '30s Germany, filmed when most in Hollywood wouldn't yet touch the subject...
USA Today
Jul 29, 1994

Description by

The Mortal Storm is the story of Hitler's rise to power as seen through the microcosm of one German family. What may seem small and personal is instead towering, a bold revelation of the brutality of the Nazi regime that so infuriated propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels that he banned all MGM movies in Germany.

In their fourth and final teaming, Margaret Sullavan and James Stewart play sweethearts, evoking the tender, romantic empathy that always marked their work together. They lead a sterling cast in director Frank Borzage's sweeping tale of the political and human chaos that rips a family apart, sets child against parent and lover against lover, and leads to savagery, to sacrifice and to heroism.

Product Description:

A cautionary tale involving two young lovers living in Germany during Hitler's rise to power who try to escape the growing Nazi threat. Based on Phyllis Bottome's 1937 novel.

Plot Synopsis:

This bold -- and, in 1940, contemporary -- indictment of Nazi oppression examines the evil effects of Hitler's rise to power.
A Jewish scholar at a German university dismisses theories about Aryan blood being "superior" from that of other ethnic groups. He is subsequently punished by being shipped to a concentration camp. Thereafter, his family's once-warm home becomes a cold cave of fear.
Though the professor's stepsons welcome the new regime and don swastika-spangled uniforms, his daughter, Freya, and her fiance plan to flee the country. Freya also tries to smuggle a manuscript, written by her father, that chronicles the terror.
But their only path to freedom is a snow-covered trail in the Austrian Alps, one that just might be stationed with Nazi marksmen.


Production Notes:

  • Nazi officials allegedly banned all MGM releases because of this film's overt anti-Nazi politics.
    Some have said that Victor Saville had his name removed from the credits of "The Mortal Storm," because the British producer did not want to be credited with motivating America to enter the Second World War.
    Author Al Rosen filed a lawsuit against the distributors of this film because, he claimed, the plot of his novel, "Mad Dog of Europe," had been lifted and placed in the narrative of "The Mortal Storm."
  • Several scenes were filmed in the mountains of Utah and Idaho to convey the look of the Austrian Alps.
  • A few scenes of this film were included in the 1992 thriller "Shining Through," which starred Michael Douglas and Melanie Griffith and was directed by David Seltzer.
  • Additional cast: Granville Bates (Professor Berg); Thomas Ross (Professor Werner); Sue Moore (Theresa); Harry Depp (Second colleague); and Gus Glassmire (Fourth colleague).
  • Additional credit: Edward Kane (score composer).
This product is made-on-demand by the manufacturer using DVD-R recordable media. Almost all DVD players can play DVD-Rs (except for some older models made before 2000) - please consult your owner's manual for formats compatible with your player. These DVD-Rs may not play on all computers or DVD player/recorders. To address this, the manufacturer recommends viewing this product on a DVD player that does not have recording capability.
Studio Vaults
Warner Archive Collection

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Product Info

  • Sales Rank: 8,759
  • UPC: 883316213025
  • Shipping Weight: 0.25/lbs (approx)
  • International Shipping: 1 item

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