MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Up 3,251 this week

Meet John Doe (1941)

Passed  -  Comedy | Drama | Romance  -  3 May 1941 (USA)
7.7
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.7/10 from 7,921 users  
Reviews: 78 user | 39 critic

A man needing money agrees to impersonate a nonexistent person who said he'd be committing suicide as a protest, and a political movement begins.

Director:

Writers:

(based on a story by), (based on a story by), 2 more credits »
0Check in
0Share...

Watch Now

Free at Internet Archive

Editors' Spotlight

IMDb Picks: October

IMDb's editors share the movies and TV shows they are excited to see in October.


User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 35 titles
created 18 Aug 2011
 
a list of 30 titles
created 09 Jul 2013
 
a list of 33 titles
created 08 Sep 2013
 
a list of 35 titles
created 8 months ago
 
a list of 22 titles
created 6 months ago
 

Related Items

Search for "Meet John Doe" on Amazon.com

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Meet John Doe (1941)

Meet John Doe (1941) on IMDb 7.7/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Meet John Doe.

User Polls

Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Ball of Fire (1941)
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

A group of ivory-tower lexicographers realize they need to hear how real people talk, and end up helping a beautiful singer avoid police and escape from the Mob.

Director: Howard Hawks
Stars: Gary Cooper, Barbara Stanwyck, Oskar Homolka
Riding High (1950)
Certificate: Passed Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A horse trainer who has fallen on hard times looks to his horse, Broadway Bill, to finally win the big race.

Director: Frank Capra
Stars: Bing Crosby, Coleen Gray, Charles Bickford
Broadway Bill (1934)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A runaway heiress and her sister's husband join forces to race the latter's fast horse, Broadway Bill.

Director: Frank Capra
Stars: Warner Baxter, Myrna Loy, Walter Connolly
Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Foreign correspondent Pete Garvey has 5 days to win back his former fiancée, or he'll lose the orphans he adopted.

Director: Frank Capra
Stars: Bing Crosby, Jane Wyman, Alexis Smith
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

A man from a family of rich snobs becomes engaged to a woman from a good-natured but decidedly eccentric family.

Director: Frank Capra
Stars: Jean Arthur, James Stewart, Lionel Barrymore
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A gangster tries to make Apple Annie, the Times Square apple seller, a lady for a day.

Director: Frank Capra
Stars: Warren William, May Robson, Guy Kibbee
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

An industrialist is urged to run for President, but this requires uncomfortable compromises on both political and marital levels.

Director: Frank Capra
Stars: Spencer Tracy, Katharine Hepburn, Van Johnson
Lost Horizon (1937)
Adventure | Drama | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

A plane crash delivers a group of people to the secluded land of Shangri-La -- but is it the miraculous utopia it appears to be?

Director: Frank Capra
Stars: Ronald Colman, Jane Wyatt, Edward Everett Horton
Sergeant York (1941)
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A hillbilly sharpshooter drafted in WW1 despite his claim to be a pacifist, who ends up becoming a war hero.

Director: Howard Hawks
Stars: Gary Cooper, Walter Brennan, Joan Leslie
Certificate: Passed Action | Adventure | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

The lights go out at a high-society dinner party and one of the guests is murdered. The police are summoned and Inspector Killian shows up, with his assistant Carney. In order to get a ... See full summary »

Director: Frank Capra
Stars: Jack Holt, Dorothy Revier, William Collier Jr.
Certificate: Passed Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

It's the 1930s, the Depression era, and the Board of Directors of Thomas Dickson's bank want Dickson to merge with New York Trust and resign. He refuses. One night, Dickson's bank is robbed... See full summary »

Directors: Frank Capra, Allan Dwan, and 1 more credit »
Stars: Walter Huston, Pat O'Brien, Kay Johnson
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  
Director: Frank Capra
Stars: Shirley Mason, William Collier Jr., Johnnie Walker
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
D.B. Norton
...
The 'Colonel'
...
Mrs. Mitchell
...
Henry
...
Mayor Lovett
...
Ted Sheldon
Irving Bacon ...
...
Bert (credit only)
J. Farrell MacDonald ...
'Sourpuss'
Warren Hymer ...
Angelface
Harry Holman ...
Mayor Hawkins
Andrew Tombes ...
Spencer
Pierre Watkin ...
Hammett
Edit

Storyline

As a parting shot, fired reporter Ann Mitchell prints a fake letter from unemployed "John Doe," who threatens suicide in protest of social ills. The paper is forced to rehire Ann and hires John Willoughby to impersonate "Doe." Ann and her bosses cynically milk the story for all it's worth, until the made-up "John Doe" philosophy starts a whole political movement. At last everyone, even Ann, takes her creation seriously...but publisher D.B. Norton has a secret plan. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

ALL AMERICA WANTS TO MEET THE "MR. DEEDS" OF 1941! (original print media ad - all caps)

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

3 May 1941 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Frank Capra's 'Meet John Doe'  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Regarding the 'sweet potatoes' that Gary Cooper and Walter Brennan play, in addition to "Hi Diddle Dee Dee (An Actor's Life For Me)", from "Pinocchio": Brennan alone plays this on an ocarina (sweet potato), but Cooper plays a small harmonica. The tune they play as a duet, while Barbara Stanwyck is interviewing them, is The "William Tell Overture, Finale" by Rossini (The Lone Ranger Theme). Cooper explains the reason Brennan likes him is that they both play 'Doohickeys'. See more »

Goofs

The collar of John Doe's coat is alternately up and down between shots when Ann is persuading him not to jump off the roof. See more »

Quotes

The Colonel: I've seen guys like you before. Guys that never had to worry. Then they get a hold of some dough and go goofy.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Hudsucker Proxy (1994) See more »

Soundtracks

Hard Times Come Again No More
(1854) (uncredited)
Written by Stephen Foster
Performed by The Hall Johnson Choir
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
The third film in Capra's unofficial trilogy is darkly wonderful.
4 March 2008 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

After doing Mr Deeds Goes To Town and Mr Smith Goes To Washington for Columbia, Capra quit and made this third film about an average Joe thrust into a powerful world where exploitation is high on the agenda, but in true Capra style the story unfolds to a customary flip flop triumph.

Ann Mitchell is a struggling journalist who gets fired from her newspaper job by new editor Henry Connell, by way of venting her frustrations she writes in her stinging last article about a man called John Doe who is tired of being pushed around and held back by the big bosses, she finishes the piece by claiming that Doe will commit suicide on Christmas Eve by leaping off the roof of city hall, the public react to the letter with tremendous heart and Doe becomes a champion of the people.

After Connell gets interested in the letter Ann has to confess that she made it up, they hatch a plan to turn a real unemployed drop out into John Doe so as to continue the story and sell more papers, and of course Ann gets to keep her job. This brings in ex minor league pitcher Long John Willoughby, who is down on his luck and very short of cash, and this is when the story shifts from amiable comedy on to a much darker path, the result making for a riveting watch.

Whilst not being up with the best Capra films in his armoury, it is, however, one of his smartest. The portrayal of the human spirit in many guises is stark and poignant, whilst thematically Capra got his point over about the unsavoury elements blossoming in America. The cast are nailed on watchable, Gary Cooper is John Doe, the right amount of sympathy and guts is garnered from his performance, and in one rousing speech he has the viewers in the palm of his hand. Barbara Stanwyck is Ann Mitchell and she delivers a great turn that calls for a number of emotions to be performed convincingly, while the support cast are all solid with the stand out a bizarrely unnerving Edward Arnold as D B. Norton; a man wishing to be a dictator if ever there was one. 10/10


8 of 8 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
joe the plumber ncblue66
Organized Religion Subtext realmyth
Yo, Modern Liberalistas! tmonigan
Why not use Jimmy Stewart? fayebags
Can't find cast member aminthepm2001
main azaad hoon 1989 AMITABH BACHCHAN kasim786
Discuss Meet John Doe (1941) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?