Sitting in journalism, anxiously awaiting the end of the opening credits, I indulge in the
brilliance of ‘Gentleman’s Agreement’. Schuyler Green is “carrying the world on his shoulders,”
and scrambling for the next best story to write about. When asked to cover a story on the Jewish
segregation in the U.S. during the holocaust, Mr. Green dreads the assignment, as it has been done
a hundred times before with facts, figures, and boring repetitiveness. His publisher wants
something new, something big, but Schuyler is having trouble thinking outside the box.
However, during a conversation with his mother, Green learns to think INSIDE the box
(because it’s bigger on the inside), and he develops the idea that he himself cold be Jewish and
write a story—from the personal perspective, mind you—about how he was treated as a Jew in
comparison to how he was treated as an American. He changed his name from his middle name,
Schuyler, to his first name, Philip, and changed his last name from Green to Greenberg. Through
a series of several events, Phil learns the hardship and pain which Jews had to suffer.
Even when his own fiancé gives him a hard time about living a lie, Mr. Green persists to defend
the Jews and fight back for what he knows is right! ‘Gentleman’s Agreement’ enlightens the
audience about the struggle and hardship which Jews faced during the Holocaust, even in America.
Screenwriter Moss Hart, being a Jew himself, pieced together a brilliant, charming story which
presented a radical concept: What if we all just lived together in peace, with a lack of segregation
and partiality? This 1947 film went on to be nominated for 8 Oscars and to win 3 (Pest Picture,
Best Supporting Actress, and Best Director).’Gentleman’s Agreement’ is a must-see for any who
are looking for a dramatic, romantic, suspenseful classic.
‘You know something, Phil? I suddenly want to live to be very old. Very. I want to be around to
see what happens. The world is stirring in very strange ways. Maybe this is the century for it.
Maybe that's why it's so troubled. Other centuries had their driving forces. What will ours have
been when men look back? Maybe it won't be the American century after all... or the Russian
century or the atomic century. Wouldn't it be wonderful... if it turned out to be everybody's
century... when people all over the world - free people - found a way to live together? I'd like to be
around to see some of that... even the beginning. I may stick around for quite a while.’
Review by Kaleb Saleeby