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Goodbye, Mr. Chips (1939)

Robert Donat , Greer Garson , Sam Wood  |  NR |  DVD
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (99 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Robert Donat, Greer Garson, Terry Kilburn, John Mills, Paul Henreid
  • Directors: Sam Wood
  • Format: Closed-captioned, Black & White, Dolby, Dubbed
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono), French (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish, French
  • Dubbed: French
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Warner Home Video
  • DVD Release Date: February 3, 2004
  • Run Time: 114 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (99 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00011D1R2
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #116,903 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Goodbye, Mr. Chips" on IMDb

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

One more terrific film from a terrific year for movies--1939, the year of Gone with the Wind, The Wizard of Oz, and Stagecoach, among others--Sam Wood's Goodbye Mr. Chips is a deeply stirring work starring Robert Donat as the old schoolmaster who looks back upon his life. Told mostly in flashbacks, the film wraps itself around a history of an older England as seen through the generations of boys who pass through Mr. Chips's classroom. Greer Garson is her usual classy, sexy-intelligent self as Donat's wife, their earlier courtship one of the film's highlights. Get out the Kleenex for this one. --Tom Keogh

Product Description


Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
78 of 84 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Schmaltzy, but who minds? July 8, 2004
This is a wonderfully sentimental depiction of public school life in the Victorian and Edwardian eras and beyond. Chipping, like so many other schoolmasters of the time, lives a cloistered life on which the outer world only occasionally impinges -- mostly during wartime.
In the film, he ventures out on only one other memorable occasion -- a holiday with the school German teacher to the Tyrol where he meets the handsome Greer Garson (in her first movie appearance), who somewhat improbably falls for him. This sets off a chain of sentimental events: marriage, introductions to the common room, tea with the boys, her death through childbirth, and a never-ending cycle of Colleys (played by the same actor, but with a slightly different haircut for each generation). The school hymn is also designed to pluck the heart stings.
The movie was actually filmed at Repton. I went to a similarly confined, all-boys, English public school, set in a country town miles from anywhere else, though somewhat more recently than the Chips era. Many of the masters never married because it was so difficult for them to meet any women. We still had corporal punishment -- which Chips continues to inflict even when brought out of retirement to become head during World War One. This film does not reflect the grubby reality of public school life -- the author must have had his rose-tinted spectacles on when he wrote this -- but it's hard not to be moved by it.
I have special memories of first seeing this at the age of 12 in our headmaster's study, together with all the other senior boys at the prep school. Today, its meaning for me is more about staying in the same place for a long time, while all about you moves on. (I've recently completed 25 years with the same employer!
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32 of 33 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars When the Movie tops the Book June 7, 2005
There aren't many cases where the movie is better than the book, but "Goodbye Mr. Chips" is one of them. James Hilton tossed together his barely over 100 pages of big type in about a week. The scriptwriters for the film fleshed out a good story line with much more detail. Well-directed and just superbly acted by Robert Donat in the title role, this film is an endearing classic.

The basic story is that of a traditional English schoolmaster, set in a period from mid-Victorian to pre-WWII. It's a gentle tale of the meaning of a man's life and how we can rise to excellence in our modest professions and touch the lives of many. Mr. Chipping ("Chips" as his students affectionately know him) leads a rich life, although also fraught with sorrows.

There is still much relevance to the film--the tragedy of war, the importance of a balanced education, and the evils of caste.

Yes, the film is sentimental and a little manipulative, but you will probably not mind. In fact, you may cry your eyes out.

Compared to R.F. Delderfield's "To Serve Them All My Days," the book of "Chips" is not nearly as good, but this film tops the BBC mini-series of "Days" in virtually every way--especially in managing to leave out a lot of class warfare!

Order it, go buy a box of Puffs, and plonk yourself down for a delightful classic!
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30 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars BEST ACTOR AA FOR 1939. July 11, 2002
Format:VHS Tape
The excellent film version of James Hilton's sentimental novellette. The tribute to the English public school system and to one Mr. Chipping is done with immaculate care in every respect; it is a serene, tenderly heart-warming story. Like the story, the film is nostalgic: if we never knew a Mr. Chips, we should have - he belongs in every young man's past. Robert Donat gives an incredibly fine charactisation of the much-loved schoolmaster. Donat's performance is noteworthy not merely for his uncanny ability to make a convincing transition from young schoolmaster to octogenarian, but for his subtle underlining (if underlining can be subtle) of the dramatic moments in an essentially undramatic life. Chips was a shy person; like an iceberg, two-thirds of him was always subsurface. Donat wisely understated him playing him softly which doubled his poignance. It is only when he is seen as a crotchety old man scattering across campus in his tattered robe - that Donat went a TRIFLE overdrawn: a fraction of the cute and overacted side. But that is just and impression and not deep enough to discredit an otherwise flawless performance. Greer Garson's portrait of Katherine, the assertive young woman who changed the dour Mr. Chipping into the loveable Mr. Chips is altogether believable and quite entrancing: here is one of the nicest people we could ever wish to encounter! The boys are completely captivated hy Katherine - and so is the viewer. Paul Henreid is splendid as the German instructor and Terry Kilburn is unforgettable. A beautiful picture in every respect.
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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Overlooked Masterpiece! February 5, 2002
Format:VHS Tape
The year is 1939, often considered the greatest year for American movies: Gone with the Wind, The Wizard of Oz, Wuthering Heights, Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, Stagecoach, Young Mr. Lincoln, Dark Victory, Gunga Din, Of Mice and Men, and the best of them all - Goodbye, Mr. Chips. It is unabashedly sentimental, even corny, but it remains after sixty years one of the two best movies about teachers (the other being the Miracle Worker) and has at its center one of the best acting performances of all time - Robert Donat as the title character in his Oscar winning performance (winning against Clark Gable, Jimmy Stewart, Laurence Olivier and Mickey Rooney). His performance is for the ages, particularly in light of the fact that he ages 60 years during the course of the film. It also has a wonderful romance (with a luminous Greer Garson) and a fine supporting cast (including the school children) but it is the understated poignancy of Donat's performance that makes this a true classic.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars The classic tear jerker
You cry because it is sad and you cry because it is happy. The number one tear jerker and I have seen it about 10 times
Published 13 days ago by Kristin D. Preiss
5.0 out of 5 stars Favorite Classic
My mom loves this movie so bought it for her. She loves it as do I since I remembered watching it as a little girl.
Published 1 month ago by red
4.0 out of 5 stars Very Sweet Movie
I read the book before I watched the movie, and, as almost always the case, the book is better. However, this movie was pretty close to the book and well made.
Published 1 month ago by Mary
4.0 out of 5 stars Say Hello to Mr. Chips
Today's viewers should not be afraid of Goodbye, Mr. Chips, its old fashioned sentimentalism still holds up, and it has that proverbial "they don't make them like that... Read more
Published 1 month ago by James Clifton
5.0 out of 5 stars Goodbye Mr. Chips
Robert Donat has been my favorite Actor since my first viewing of this movie. wish I had more of his films
Published 2 months ago by Bernie Devine
5.0 out of 5 stars a tear-jerker, but so well done
Robert Donat and Greer Garson tell a wonderful story of a time gone by. It's soapy and sentimental, but very dear---you quickly come to care about the characters. Very well done.
Published 2 months ago by LMooney
5.0 out of 5 stars A Sentimental, Charming Film
Forever a classic. B&W film from 1939, when England faced sending men to stop German and, soon, Japanese military aggression. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Rainy day reader
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful classic.
Great film. All the acting is excellent, but Greer Garson is radiant, intelligent, and perfect in this role. Essential viewing for all teachers!
Published 3 months ago by Lois Schwartz
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb
This movie came during Hollywood's best year for cinema. Out of all the great movie's of that year,this was perhaps that top movie of that year. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Raffu
5.0 out of 5 stars Flawless operating system.
Purchased for a friend, Sylvia, 91 yrs old. Getting for a relative, just could not figure out how to do it.. Told her I could manage it for her in ten minutes! Read more
Published 5 months ago by Gary J. Beadling
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