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578 Ratings

The Children's Hour

Directed by William Wyler
United States, 1961


A private school for young girls is scandalized when one spiteful student, Mary Tilford, accuses the two young women who run the school of having a lesbian relationship.

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The Children's Hour Directed by William Wyler

Awards & Festivals

Academy Awards

1962 | 5 nominations including: Best Actress in a Supporting Role

Directors Guild of America

1962 | Nominee: Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Motion Pictures

Golden Globes (USA)

1962 | 3 nominations including: Best Director

Critics reviews

…The Children’s Hour becomes a brilliant meditation on Hollywood’s history of repression and an obvious goading of the censorious Hays Code. While correcting his first version of Hellman’s scathing play about empty charges against people incapable of defending themselves against the insidious power of innuendo, Wyler also made the film an indictment of McCarthyism. While the word “lesbian” is never actually uttered in the film, neither is “communism,” but it’s all there.
December 04, 2014
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Hepburn and MacLaine give impassioned, occasionally histrionic performances as Karen and Martha, two headmistresses at an all-girls school and longtime close friends accused of homosexual acts by a devious, troublemaking student… The Children’s Hour may not be easily retrofitted to boast a pride flag, but to deny its power as an essential statement on the still-prevalent shame that permeates much of gay life in this country and beyond is to excise a piece of gay history itself.
July 15, 2013
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