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Tales of Manhattan (1942)

Unrated | | Comedy, Drama, Romance | 24 September 1942 (USA)
A formal tailcoat that gets passed from one owner to another affects each life in a significant way.



(original story and screenplay), (original story and screenplay) | 8 more credits »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Ethel Halloway
Charles Smith
Avery L. 'Larry' Browne
Rev. Lazarus
John Halloway
Harry Wilson
Marion Martin ...


An actor, Paul Orman, is accidentally told that his new, custom made tail coat has been cursed and it will bring misfortune to all who wear it. As the 4 succeeding wearers of the coat discover, misfortune can often lead to truth. Written by Richard Blinkal <phelam@netcom.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


An Experience You'll never forget !


Comedy | Drama | Romance


Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

24 September 1942 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Stars Over Manhattan  »

Box Office


$1,000,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (restored)

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


W.C. Fields appeared in a chapter that was cut from the final theatrical version. It has been restored to the 1996 VHS version. Also in the segment are Margaret Dumont Marcel Dalio, and Phil Silvers. See more »


At about 00:17:00 minutes, John Halloway (Thomas Mitchell) says: "Three years ago, I got an elk. There he is!" However, the animal head, mounted on the wall, that he points to is a stag, not an elk. See more »


Charles Smith's Bullying Boss: [Annoyed that the pianist in his low rent bar is playing classical, not boogie-woogie] Whatta yuh think I'm payin' yuh for, mug? Music, not moider! Good music - get it?
See more »


Spoofed in Ratataa eller The Staffan Stolle Story (1956) See more »


A Hot Time in the Old Town
Music by Theo. A. Metz
Played when the booze is being poured into the coconut milk
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User Reviews

Panoramic B&W nostalgia masterpiece
27 May 2008 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

After one seeing, this movie is one of my top favorites.

It's six or seven short stories with perhaps the most astounding cast in history.

I loved Charles Laughton as an impoverished composer getting his big chance from a Toscanini-type martinet conductor. I loved Edward G. Robinson as a Bowery drunk sent to his Harvard(like) reunion by a doting Bowery reverend. I loved the plot twists in the first two stories. Anyhow, I LOVE it. We see familiar actors in unfamiliar roles: Thomas Mitchell, a great actor, usually plays character parts, Irish or sailors or Uncle Billy in "Wonderful Life"-- here we see him as the real sophisticate he was. Rita Hayworth as jealous and uncertain as well as gorgeous. Henry Fonda, very young and playing very dumb. Ginger Rogers as a spitfire jealous fiancée. And on and on.

And best of all-- The final sequence is incredible, politically incorrect in every possible way. It stars Paul Robeson, Ethel Waters and Rochester (the comedy black guy from the Jack Benny radio show). It alone is worth the rental, combining the worst of sharecropper-Rastus-Here-Come-de-Lawd ethnic parody with a chance for Robeson to speak the Communist ideal at its highest and most hopeful, never more to be heard and powerful to hear from someone who believed it. Probably this was the only condition under which Robeson would consent to appear in an appalling stereotype skit.

The photography is great. THE LIGHTING is worth a year of film school. (Too bad the director went back to France after the war.) This movie has everything. As Hollywood Nostalgia, it's the tops.

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

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