Oscar Movies: Inn of the Six Happiness, The (1958)

Fox
 
At the height of her popularity, after winning a second Oscar for "Anastasia," in 1956, Ingrid Berman plays Gladys Aylward, a British woman who wants to go to China to work as a missionary.
 
To that extent, she lives meagerly, saving every penny she has.  Gladys gets her desire and wins over the local mandarin (played by the very British Robert Donat, of "Goodbye Mr. Chips" fame) and the Nationalist general (played by the very German Curt Jurgens). During WWII, she manages to save orphans from the invading Japanese.
 
Adapted to the screen by Isobel Lenhart from Alan Burgess's famous book, "The Small Woman," "The Inn of the Sixth Happiness" is smoothly directed by Mark Robson, but it's a movie that lacks credibility and authenticity, not least because it was shot in Wales, standing in for China.
 
Moreover, as was Hollywood's norm at the time, most of the Asian roles are cast with Caucasian actors, which would be unacceptable toady.
 
Robson, on the heels of his huge success with the melodrama "Peyton Place," received a second, consecutive Best Director nomination, probably due to the commercial popularity of the movie.
 
Oscar Nominations: 1
 
Director: Mark Robson
 
Oscar Awards: None
 
Oscar Context:
 
The winner of the Best Director Oscar was Vincente Minnelli for the musical "Gigi," which swept all the awards in a race that also included Richard Brooks for "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof," Stanley Kramer for "The Defiant Ones," and Robert Wise for "I Want to Live!"