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1964 Oscar-nominated film written by Paddy Chayefsky
The Americanization of Emily

The Americanization of Emily is a 1964 American black-and-white romantic dark comedy-drama war film written by Paddy Chayefsky, produced by Martin Ransohoff, directed by Arthur Hiller, and starring James Garner, Julie Andrews, Melvyn Douglas and James Coburn. The film also features Joyce Grenfell, Keenan Wynn, and William Windom. The screenplay by Chayefsky is loosely adapted from the novel of the same name by William Bradford Huie, who had been a SeaBee officer during the Normandy Invasion. The film is set in 1944 London during World War II in the weeks leading up to D-Day.

Cast and Crew

Melvyn DouglasAdm. William Jessup
James GarnerLt. Cmdr. Charles Edward Madison
Paddy ChayefskyScreenwriter

Video Products

The Americanization of Emily (1964), 10 May 2005


The 100th Anniversary of the Great State Crime, by Sheldon Richman, The Goal Is Freedom, 8 Aug 2014
Reflections on the start of the Great War, 100 years ago, the second act (World War II) and wars in general
[I] think of the words Paddy Chayefsky wrote for his protagonist Charlie Madison (James Garner) in the movie The Americanization of Emily, spoken to a woman who preferred to pretend that war had not taken her husband and son:
I don't trust people who make bitter reflections about war, Mrs. Barham. It's always the generals with the bloodiest records who are the first to shout what a Hell it is. And it's always the widows who lead the Memorial Day parades ... Maybe ministers and generals blunder us into wars, Mrs. Barham, the least the rest of us can do is to resist honoring the institution.
Memorial Day Alternative, by Butler Shaffer, 16 May 2007
Short summaries of anti-war films with rankings (as a number of *'s [1-3]) in terms of importance
*** The Americanization of Emily – I have saved my favorite anti-war film for last. This James Garner/Julie Andrews picture is quite good. The most powerful portion of it is the garden scene, in which Garner and Andrews are talking with Andrews' mother about war. Garner's impassioned soliloquy on the nature of war — with emphasis on the wives and mothers who keep the bloodbaths going by honoring them — packs more wallop than just about any other film. Garner ends up declaring that it will be cowards – such as himself – who will save the world.


The Americanization of Emily (1964), by Stephen W. Carson
Sometimes under the guise of comedy, art is at its most brutally honest. A case in point is this delightful anti-war classic starring Julie Andrews and James Garner as cynical WWII military man Charlie Madison who has rejected the 'nobility' of war. ... Despite, or because of, the brutal honesty this is a genuinely enjoyable film that confronts the issue of how to live free in a world of pointlessly fighting states.


THE AMERICANIZATION OF EMILY(1964) Original Trailer, 1964

The Americanization of Emily - "War is not moral" clip, 1964
Probably the most significant scene in the movie, where Charlie (James Garner) talks about the morality of war and how "the rest of us ... perpetuate war by exalting its sacrifices"

The introductory paragraph uses material from the Wikipedia article "The Americanization of Emily" as of 9 Sep 2018, which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.