The Children's Hour

Synopsis: Karen Wright and Martha Dobie are best friends since college and they own the boarding school Wright and Dobie School for Girls with twenty students. They are working hard as headmistresses and teachers to grow the school and make it profitable. Karen is engaged with the local doctor Joe Cardin, who is the nephew of the powerful and influential Mrs. Amelia Tilford. While the spiteful and liar Mary, who is Amelia's granddaughter and a bad influence to the other girls, is punished by Karen after telling a lie, Martha has an argument with her snoopy aunt Lily Mortar in another room. Lily accuses Martha of being jealous and having an unnatural relationship with Karen. Mary's roommate Rosalie Wells overhears the shouting and tells Mary what Mrs. Mortar had said about her niece. The malicious Mary accuses Karen and Martha of being lesbians to her grandmother and Amelia spreads the gossip to the parents of the students that withdraw them from the school. Karen and Martha lose a lawsuit agains
Genre: Drama, Romance
Director(s): William Wyler
Production: MGM Home Entertainment
  Nominated for 5 Oscars. Another 1 win & 6 nominations.
Rotten Tomatoes:
108 min

You girls take the

napkins and the plates.

Out of there. Come on,

go find your mom.

Aunt Lily!

Aunt Lily!

- Would you help me here, please?

- It's not exactly my line, Martha.

- Thank you.

- But all right.

There we are.




Grandma, I'm so glad you came.

I could hardly sleep last night,

waiting to see you today.

- Mrs. Tilford, will you excuse me, please?

- Yes, surely.


Your new dress looks

lovely on you, Mary.

- And I must say, you look nice and healthy.

- Healthy?

The way they make you slave around here, I'm

lucky I don't have gray hair and rickets!

- It's all for your own good.

- Everything I hate always is.

Anyway, I'm glad you're here.

- How do you do, Miss Dobie?

- Fine, Miss Wright.

- What do you think of our school?

- I rather like it. And you?

I may be hasty, but I

think it's here to stay.

I think we'll have two or

three new pupils next term.

Martha, it's almost

too good to believe.

Let's not stand here and gloat.

You should have a kitchen helper.

It's just too much to teach all

day, then cook, wash the dishes.

Aunt Lily, 10 minutes is a

long time for one glass.

I do not aim for speed, Martha.

I aim for perfection in life.

Will you try to perfect a few more?

If you'll excuse me, I have

one of my headaches.

I think I'd better go to my room and

prepare for tomorrow's classes.

- Good night.

- Good night.

Sleep well, Aunt Lily, and knit

up the raveled sleeve of care.


You know that if I could support her in

any other way, I wouldn't have her here.

She worries you too much. One day,

we'll have enough money to...

Money! I forgot to tell you.

I did the bills, and we're

$90 ahead this month!

- Ahead? I can't believe it!

- It's not much, but it's the first time.

Out of the red, into the black.

- Finally!

- What'll we do with it?

- Save it.

- You need clothes.

- What about you?

- I'm a skirt-and-blouse character.

We're always in style.

But you're not.

You're Fifth Avenue.

Rue de la Paix.

- You need to be kept up.

- Yes, like an old battle monument.

I'm serious.

I remember how you used

to dress in college.

The first time I ever saw you,

running across the quadrangle,

your hair flying.

At the time, I was running

from a chemistry professor.

I remember thinking,

"What a pretty girl."

Time for lights out.

Your turn to crack the whip.

I'll finish up here.

- Hurry back, and we'll take a walk.

- All right, I'd like that.

- All right, girls.

- Already?

Miss Wright, my new ring, it's gone.

I can't find it anywhere.

Don't worry about it.

We'll look for it tomorrow.

All right, bedtime.

Lights out, everyone.

Go ahead and sing.

A woman who sings while she

works is a happy woman.

Who said that?

Joseph Cardin, M.D.

You ever hear of him?

No. Ethical doctors

don't advertise.

Ethical doctors starve.

I thought you were at the

hospital Sunday nights.

I was. I traded with Dr. Mallory.

Sunday for Wednesday?

It's an even swap. They

both have 24 hours.

Why don't you just crawl

in and browse around?

- You know what I did this morning?

- What?

I delivered my 100th baby.


- How many children do you want, Martha?

- I already have 20.


- Where's Karen?

- Putting them to bed.

That's good practice.

Why don't you pay tuition? Then you

could eat three meals a day here.

Martha, you've been a little

sharp with me lately.

Have I?

Maybe it's me.

Maybe it is.


- Where did you get this book, Mary?

- Hurry up. I've read this page twice!

Okay, turn it.


Double wow!

She's headed this way.

How peaceful.

Everybody's studying.

Where's Catherine?

That'll be all for

today, Catherine.

That's last year's

history book, Mary.

I feel funny inside.

I don't know what I'm doing.

- I've got pains.

- Pains?

- I've had them all day.

- Where?


- Anything I can get you for pains "around"?

- I think I'd better call my grandmother.

Perhaps sleep is the best

thing tonight, Mary.

Tomorrow I'll call Dr. Cardin

and ask him about your pains.

All right?

Catherine, your harness.

Off to sleep, everybody.

Good night.

- Good night, Miss Wright.

- Good night.

"Dr. Cardin" this,

"Dr. Cardin" that.

She always drags him

into the conversation.

After all, she's in love with him.

Then why doesn't she marry him?

I heard him ask her that same

thing once. Downstairs.

I brought your coat. Are you ready?

Look who's here.

- Look who's here!

- Who's here?

You! It's Sunday. What happened?

I killed all the patients and

emptied the joint just for kicks.

Come on.

- But...

- Come on, Martha.

- I'm too tired for two girls.

- Martha and I were going for a walk.

Then go.

You go, Karen. I'm tired.

I have papers to correct.

See you later, Martha.

- Want to go to a movie?

- Nope.

- Walk by the lake?

- Nope.

Have a beer?

Hate beer.

What do you want to do?

Let's try something we've

never done before,

like getting married.

Even after we're married we'll be

saying the same things every night.

- Movies, a walk by the lake...

- I wouldn't like to think that.

No, I wouldn't.

It'd be nice to sit by ourselves

in our own room and...

Read a book.

Read a book?

"Miss Wright, is that what you'll

be doing after you're married?

"Reading books?"

What's the matter with you, Joe?

Same thing that was the matter with

me last week, last month, last year.

Rate this script:3.0 / 1 vote

John Michael Hayes

John Michael Hayes (11 May 1919 – 19 November 2008) was an American screenwriter, who scripted several of Alfred Hitchcock's films in the 1950s. more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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