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Sister Kenny (1946)

Approved | | Biography, Drama | 10 October 1946 (USA)
An Australian nurse discovers an effective new treatment for infantile paralysis, but experiences great difficulty in convincing doctors of the validity of her claims.

Director:

Dudley Nichols

Writers:

Dudley Nichols (screen play), Alexander Knox (screen play) | 3 more credits »
Reviews
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

Photos

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Rosalind Russell ... Elizabeth Kenny
Alexander Knox ... Dr. McDonnell
Dean Jagger ... Kevin Connors
Philip Merivale ... Dr. Brack
Beulah Bondi ... Mary Kenny
Charles Dingle ... Michael Kenny
John Litel ... Medical Director
Doreen McCann Doreen McCann ... Dorrie McIntyre
Fay Helm ... Mrs. McIntyre
Charles Kemper ... Mr. McIntyre
Dorothy Peterson ... Agnes
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
James Burke ... Undetermined Minor Role (scenes deleted)
Teddy Infuhr Teddy Infuhr ... Boy (scenes deleted)
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Storyline

Elizabeth Kenny, as a young nurse out in the Australian bush discovers an effective treatment for polio, but can't get official recognition or sanction for her techniques and theories. For more than three decades (while she tells her fiancée she can't marry him, and repeatedly confronts the pigheaded orthopedic specialist Dr. Brack), she is prevented from treating acute cases and is ridiculed, while she seeks formal recognition for the efficacy of her treatment. Written by Kathy Li

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A woman made for love . . . but whose service to humanity became her destiny!

Genres:

Biography | Drama

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

10 October 1946 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Sister Kenny See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,200,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

RKO Radio Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

It was reported at the time that Elizabeth Kenny was paid $100,000 for the rights to her story by RKO. She then donated the amount to a trust fund set up for the benefit of seventeen nephews who were all in the Royal Australian Air Force at the time. And, it was stipulated in her contract with RKO that Rosalind Russell portray her in the film. See more »

Goofs

Although mostly set in Australia with primarily Australian characters none of the cast make any attempt to speak in anything other than their own native accent. See more »

Quotes

Dr. McDonnell: Whatever you do, whatever happens, remember the people are more important than the system. That's true in government, they're fighting a war to prove it. And it's true in medicine. You've got that fight left Elizabeth. It's a big fight, it wont be easy, I wish I could help you.
See more »

Soundtracks

Happy Birthday to You
(1893) (uncredited)
Written by Mildred J. Hill and Patty S. Hill
Sung by children to Rosalind Russell
See more »

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User Reviews

 
The Kenny Method
16 June 2011 | by blanche-2See all my reviews

Rosalind Russell is "Sister Kenny" in this 1946 film also starring Alexander Knox, Dean Jagger, and Philip Merrivale. It's the romanticized story of Australian Sister Kenny, a "bush nurse" who developed an alternative treatment for polio that was met with great controversy from the medical profession, even though it worked.

The film chronicles the personal sacrifices Kenny made, giving up a chance at marriage, in order to help the children she encountered with polio and to try to convince the medical profession that her treatment was viable.

Rosalind Russell, whose nephew was helped by the Kenny Method, plays Sister Kenny, and she's wonderful. She ages during the film, but it's more than gray hair and some shadows drawn on the face - the age is in her walk, her attitude, and her carriage. A fantastic job that earned her an Oscar nomination.

Actor Alan Alda, opera star Marjorie Lawrence, and "Li'l Abner" creator Al Capp all were treated with the Kenny Method. Though the medical profession attempts to blow off alternative treatments, I've seen them work. This film is a reminder of the wall they put up, and one person's determination to break through it.


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