The Crystal Ball (1943)

 |  Comedy  |  22 January 1943 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.6/10 from 347 users  
Reviews: 14 user

Girl loses beauty contest, becomes a fortune teller.



(screenplay), (from a story by)
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Credited cast:
Toni Gerard
Madame Zenobia
Virginia Field ...
Jo Ainsley
Pop Tibbets
Biff Carter
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Secretary (scenes deleted)
Maude Eburne ...
Apple Annie Character (scenes deleted)


Toni Gerard lands in New York with 38 cents to her name and is befriended by fortune teller Madame Zenobia and a neighboring shooting gallery owner. Toni is smitten with Brad, a lawyer/suitor to Jo, one of Zenobia's "clients." When Zenobia is slightly injured, Toni takes her place and uses her newly found influence to meet Brad and break up the budding romance between him and Jo. Written by Ron Kerrigan <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


"I've Got a Message for You...YES YOU!"




See all certifications »




Release Date:

22 January 1943 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Bola de Cristal  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


In one scene, when Biff answers the door, Toni tells him that she's from the Civilian Defense Office. He says "We got sand." During WWII, Civilian Defense was in charge of ensuring that civilians were prepared for air raids. Households were asked to keep fire-extinguishing items on hand, such as buckets of sand and garden hoses. See more »


When the waiter carrying the cake slips and falls, he supposedly does so because Toni Gerard dropped her lipstick on the floor; however, the waiter does not actually step on the lipstick prior to falling. See more »


Brad Cavanaugh: Don't be a flirt. You might get hurt.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits are shown over a crystal ball & astrology diagram background. See more »


Deep in the Heart of Texas
Written by Don Swander (music) and June Hershey (lyrics)
See more »

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User Reviews

38 cents to her name
21 December 2013 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

Paulette Goddard and Ray Milland did several films during the Forties enough they should qualify as a screen team. The Crystal Ball has them as a former beauty contest winner who is down to 38 cents to her name as she arrives in New York. She's befriended by Gladys George who is a fortune teller and also by Cecil Kellaway who runs a shooting gallery and she works for both at times.

Enter Ray Milland lawyer whose main client is Virginia Field, oil heiress and believer in the occult and various folks who make their living off the same. Goddard takes one look at Milland and decides he's the one.

Getting him away from Field will be a problem though. So in a series of Lucy like stunts she does everything she can to win Milland including accidentally giving him some inside information concerning his client's estate. And Field who has her hooks into Milland ain't giving up without a fight.

Always amusing and around is William Bendix playing Milland's chauffeur, butler, and general all around factotum. There isn't a movie or television show that he was in that something special wasn't added.

I think The Crystal Ball might have been a classic if someone like Mitchell Leisen or George Marshall had directed it. It's amusing enough, but lacks that classic spark.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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