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They Won't Forget (1937)

Approved  |   |  Drama, Film-Noir, Mystery  |  9 October 1937 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.4/10 from 947 users  
Reviews: 33 user | 9 critic

A politically ambitious district attorney, unscrupulous tabloid journalists, and regional prejudice combine to charge a teacher with the murder of his student.




(novel), (screen play), 1 more credit »
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Airs Thu. Oct. 15, 2:00 PM on TCM


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Gloria Dickson ...
Edward Norris ...
Robert Hale
Allyn Joslyn ...
Bill Brock
Linda Perry ...
Imogene Mayfield
Cy Kendall ...
Detective Laneart
Clinton Rosemond ...
Tump Redwine
E. Alyn Warren ...
Carlisle P. Buxton
Elisabeth Risdon ...
Mrs. Hale (as Elizabeth Risdon)
Clifford Soubier ...
Jim Timberlake
Granville Bates ...
Detective Pindar
Ann Shoemaker ...
Mrs. Mountford


A southern town is rocked by scandal when teenager Mary Clay is murdered on Confederate Decoration Day. Andrew Griffin, a small-time lawyer with political ambitions, sees the crime as his ticket to the Senate if he can find the right victim to finger for the crime. He sets out to convict Robert Hale, a transplanted northerner who was Mary's teacher at the business school where she was killed. Despite the fact that all the evidence against Hale is circumstantial, Griffin works with a ruthless reporter to create a media frenzy of prejudice and hate against the teacher. Written by Daniel Bubbeo <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Approved | See all certifications »




Release Date:

9 October 1937 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Death in the Deep South  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


The story is based on the murder trial of Leo Frank in 1915, despite the usual disclaimer at the start of the movie. Author Ward Greene covered that trial in Atlanta, Georgia, as a reporter. See more »


Fred: What'll it all be be, ladies?
Imogene Mayfield: Dope and cherry, Fred.
Fred: [to Mary] How about you, half-pint?
Mary Clay: Make mine a chocolate malt and drop an egg in it as fresh as you are.
Fred: The hens don't lay 'em that good.
See more »


Version of Murder in Harlem (1935) See more »


Kingdom Coming
(1862) (uncredited)
aka "The Year of Jubilo"
Music by Henry Clay Work
Played during the opening credits
See more »

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User Reviews

Helluva Fast Civics Lesson
2 October 2001 | by (brighton, ma) – See all my reviews

Quick-paced film from the late thirties, directed by Mervyn Le Roy, They Won't Forget in an eminently memorable lesson in how gossip, rumor, innuendo and ignorance can get a man lynched. Set in the Depression-era South, it perhaps lacks atmosphere, as I've seen more convincing pictures of this region. Nor are the actors especially believable as Southerners. Claude Rains is unable to harness his innate Britishness in his portrayal of the DA, maybe the film's single biggest drawback. But the other actors, with or without the appropriate Dixie cadences are superb, notably Allyn Joslyn, in his movie debut, as an amoral, opportunistic reporter. I'm particularly fond of Gloria Dickson's heartfelt performance as the accused man's wife, and sad to read that she died so young. This is an excellent film of its type: the Warner Brothers 'message picture'. It is not aesthetically pleasing in its detail or dialogue, but this was not the point. It gets the job done, stimulates the intellect and the emotions, and moves like lightning.

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Only 1 good thing about this movie folkepalm
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Superb movie great closing scene borodinrodin
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Mervyn Leroy uncredited oldmotem
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