All the Brothers Were Valiant (1953): Richard Thorpe’s Oscar Nominated Romantic Adventure, Starring Robert Taylor and Stewart Granger

Richard Thorpe’s romantic adventure, All the Brothers Were Valiant, is adapted to the screen by Harry Brown from the 1919 novel of the same name by Ben Ames Williams.
All the Brothers Were Valiant
All the Brothers Were Valiant poster.jpg

Theatrical release poster
The 1953 MGM film is a remake of the 1923 silent film that starred Lon Chaney and made by Metro Pictures (now lost); as is the 1928 MGM version, Across to Singapore, which starred Ramon Novarro.
The tale centers on two whalers (played by Robert Taylor and Stewart Granger) and the woman (Ann Blyth) who comes between them.
Set against South Pacific islands, this love triangle pits the good brother against the bad as they squabble over a woman and pearls in a lagoon; the bad brother redeems himself, however, by helping fend off a mutiny.
The movie belongs to a cycle of color-made Hollywood adventures that began in 1950 with King Solomon’s Mines, also starring Stewart Granger.

MGM bought the rights to the novel in 1936, after the success of Captains Courageous, planning t0 team Robert Taylor and Spencer Tracy. In 1951, the film was recast with Taylor and Stewart Granger. Elizabeth Taylor was originally announced for the female lead, but she had just given birth, and was replaced by Ann Blyth.

Granger called the film a “crappy melodrama” and said the studio forced him to do this instead of the role he really wanted, the lead in Mogambo, which went to Clark Gable.

The cast also includes good characters actors Keenan Wynn, James Whitmore, and Lewis Stone (in his final role).
Oscar Nominations: 1
Cinematography (color): George Folsey
Oscar Awards: None
Oscar Context:
The winner of the Best Cinematography Oscar was Loyal Griggs for George Stevens’ Western, “Shane.”
If you want to know more about the history of the Oscars, please read my book:
I am grateful to TCM for showing the film.

Robert Taylor as Joel Shore
Stewart Granger as Mark Shore
Ann Blyth as Priscilla ‘Pris’ Holt
Betta St. John as Native Girl
Keenan Wynn as Silva
James Whitmore as Fetcher
Kurt Kasznar as Quint
Lewis Stone as Captain Holt
Robert Burton as Asa Worthen


Directed by Richard Thorpe
Produced by Pandro S. Berman
Written by Harry Brown, based on All the Brothers Were Valiant 1919 novel by Ben Ames Williams
Music by Miklós Rózsa
Cinematography George J. Folsey
Edited by Ferris Webster

Production company: Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer

Distributed by Loew’s Inc.

Release date: November 13, 1953

Running time: 95 minutes
Budget $1,816,000
Box office $4,628,000