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  • Our Vines Have Tender Grapes [VHS]
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Our Vines Have Tender Grapes [VHS]


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Product Details

  • Actors: Edward G. Robinson, Margaret O'Brien, James Craig, Frances Gifford, Agnes Moorehead
  • Directors: Roy Rowland
  • Writers: Dalton Trumbo, George Victor Martin
  • Producers: Robert Sisk
  • Format: Black & White, NTSC
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Number of tapes: 1
  • Studio: MGM (Warner)
  • VHS Release Date: September 1, 1998
  • Run Time: 105 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (90 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: 6302717744
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #387,541 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Editorial Reviews

An earnest rural melodrama set among Norwegian immigrants in Wisconsin, Our Vines Have Tender Grapes is a slightly updated version of George Victor Martin's 1940 novel. Edward G. Robinson stars as Martinius Jacobson, a farmer devoted to his wife Bruna (Agnes Moorehead) and precocious seven-year-old daughter Selma (Margaret O'Brien), whom he lovingly calls "Jente Mi." Along with her freckle-faced five-year-old cousin, Arnold (Jackie "Butch" Jenkins), Selma lives a carefree, joyous life, which is only temporarily clouded by the sudden death of Ingeborg Jensen (Dorothy Morris), an emotionally disturbed young women whose stern father (Charles Middleton) had refused to let her attend school despite the pleas of newly arrived schoolmarm Viola Johnson (Frances Gifford). The latter is quietly falling in love with Nels Halvorson (James Craig), the town newspaper editor, but cannot envision herself as a rural wife. She changes her mind when, inspired by young Selma, the entire town of Fuller Junction come to the aid of Bjorn Bjornson (Morris Carnovsky), who has lost his livestock when lightning struck a newly erected barn. When Selma generously donates her pet calf to the impoverished farmer, the townspeople in general, and Martinius in particular, follow suit, prompting Viola to reconsider her harsh views of country life and retract her letter of resignation to the school board

Customer Reviews

All the cast was great and the family story line was most enjoyable.
Fresno Son
I purchased this for my granddaughter, because I thought she would love it like I did the first time I watched it.
Alma Zent
This simple story offers sentiment without saccharine in its story of a farming family in a small community.
Gary F. Taylor

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

109 of 111 people found the following review helpful By Gary F. Taylor HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on May 23, 2002
Format: VHS Tape
This simple story offers sentiment without saccharine in its story of a farming family in a small community. Episodic in nature, the film follows the adventures of daughter Selma (Margaret O'Brien) and her friend Arnold (Jackie "Butch" Jenkins) as they, like the crops under her parents' care, grow into caring, loving individuals.
The cast is the great thing here. O'Brien was a gifted little actress, charming in her prissiness, and Jenkins equals her as her slightly pouty friend. Both offer memorable performances--but the truly remarkable performances here, the ones for which the film should be prized, come from Edward G. Robinson and Agnes Moorehead, who are cast against type in the roles of Selma's parents. Robinson, of course, is best remembered for his tough-guy roles, full of energetic bluster; Moorehead is most often recalled as one of the most memorable shrews in Hollywood history. But both show the range of their talents in this film, playing quietly, simply, and very movingly--and one regrets that both (particularly Moorehead) were not given more opportunity to play such in-depth roles more often.
Ultimately, VINES is about how parents teach their children and shape their lives--and about how children, for good or ill, learn lessons in life from their parents. Simply filmed, beautifully performed, and memorable from start to finish, it is a film that deserves wider recognition than it normally receives. An excellent family film that both parents and children will enjoy.
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49 of 50 people found the following review helpful By J. Norberg on January 26, 2006
Format: VHS Tape
I watched this for the first time just a few days ago. It affected me so much that I watched it again the next day with someone else. I don't know when I have watched a movie that I enjoyed so much--it certainly has been a while.

While today's movies focus on action, violence, and sex, this movie focuses on real life situations and how they affect a small town Midwest family. Edward G. Robinson plays a role that you've never seen him play before--a loving hard-working father. Margaret O'Brien steals the show, however. Simply put, she is the cutest and sweetest character I have ever seen in film. There are a few times when Selma (her character) has a moment of selfishness, but she quickly realizes her error and repents. Meanwhile, she makes sweet and innocent remarks throughout the film, and her unselfish action at the end almost makes you cry.

Overall, there are several lovable characters in this film. As the teacher states at the end, you "fall in love with the whole town."

Warning--if you do not like sentimental, heartwarming, and wholesome films you will not like this!
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30 of 31 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 19, 1999
Format: VHS Tape
I'm surprised that more people have not seen this movie. I saw it on one of the classic movie channels and loved it. Edward G. Robinson steps out of his usual gangster role and is totally convincing as a kind, tolerant, hardworking farmer trying to eke out a living and raise his daughter the best way he knows how. Margaret O'Brien is the daughter, and of course does an excellent job as the sweetest kid I've ever seen and she's believable! Agnes Morehead plays the mother--I was impressed with her as well, she always has played harsh,bitter women from what I've noticed and her portrayal in this movie is a total reversal. Some of the other actors may seem corny and maybe the story isn't as exciting as other movies but I'd recommend this one if you're into sentimental, happy-ending movies!
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 25, 2004
Format: VHS Tape
I would give this movie 10 stars if I could! I was deeply affected by the acting and plot of this story. At the end of the movie I cried because one, I wished it wasn't over, and two, because I think it's a powerful gift when you can make someone laugh and cry at the same time. I think it's exciting when the characters come alive and you can relate to their feelings. That is exactly what happened to me when I saw this movie. This movie was so perfect. The cast includes Edward G. Robinson as the loving, caring father; Margaret O'Brian is the young, naive daughter; Agnes Moorehead is the over-protctive mother; and (my personal favorite) Jackie Jenkins as the annoying, but cute cousin. These characters all played an important role in this movie. If Jakie Jenkins wasn't there than Margaret O'Brian would not get into trouble. If Margaret O'Brian wasn't there than Edward G. Robinson wouldn't have anyone to wake up in the middle of the night just to go see the circus. I loved all of these characters, and I know you will to!
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21 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Craig Connell on April 19, 2006
Format: VHS Tape
It's true - this is about as nice as it ever got with a movie. There are no villains, no violence (except when animals had to be destroyed in a fire...and that wasn't pictured), and just a nice story of a nice Norwegian family living in rural Wisconsin.

The story emphasizes two members of the family: the 7-year-old daughter, played by 1940s child star Margaret O'Brien, and her father, played by famous tough-guy actor Edward G. Robinson. This is Robinson as you rarely saw him and refreshingly low-key.

Yes, O'Brien tends to overact a bit, but some of her lines are so touching, so moving and delivered with such a soft, sweet voice that she gets away with them. Her gesture at the end of the film - no "spoilers" here - is so astounding I doubt it would ever happen in real life.....but it's wonderful to see.

James Craig, Frances Gifford, Agnes Moorhead and Jackie "Butch" Jeknins all add to this old-fashioned wholesome film. (If those words turn you off, by all means, skip this movie.) Jenkins can be a bit much, but he does add humor to the movie. Craig and Gifford make an attractive couple.

This movie is highly recommended for those of you who want a break from films with "bad guys" and a lot of "edginess."
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