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A Guy Named Joe (1943)

Passed | | Drama, Romance, War | March 1944 (USA)
Dead World War II bomber pilot, Maj. Pete Sandidge, becomes guardian angel to another pilot, Capt. Ted Randall, guiding Ted through battle and helping him to romance his old girlfriend, despite her excessive devotion to Sandidge's memory.

Director:

Writers:

(story), (story) | 2 more credits »
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
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Ellen Bright
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Col. Sykes
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James J. Rourke (as Don De Fore)
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Sanderson
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Maj. Corbett
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Storyline

Maj. Pete Sandidge is a very able pilot who seems to have a streak of luck as far as flying goes. World War II is raging and Pete has come out of it pretty so far. He even has a beautiful girlfriend Dorinda Durston, herself a qualified pilot who ferries aircraft to different bases. When Pete is killed however, he finds himself in heaven and learns that every pilot has a guardian angel. He returns to Earth where, unseen by anyone, he coaches a pilot-in-training Ted Randall. Ted is a pretty good kid and is coming along nicely but when he's shipped to New Guinea he runs into Dorinda who has remained faithful to her lost love. As Ted pursues her, Pete will have to decide what he wants to do about it. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A GUY - A GAL - A PAL - It's Swell!

Genres:

Drama | Romance | War | Fantasy

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

March 1944 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Dos en el cielo  »

Box Office

Budget:

$2,627,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (copyright length)

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Along with Spencer Tracy, Irene Dunne insisted the film's production be halted until Van Johnson was well after his auto accident, in which he was seriously injured. During this period, MGM snatched Dunne up to make The White Cliffs of Dover (1944), released the following year as the MGM 20th Anniversary film. As a thank you for her gratitude, Johnson appears in a small role in 'Dover.' See more »

Goofs

When Pete convinces Randall to showoff, Ted radios Rourke to take over command of their squadron. But as Ted flies just over the treetops, Rourke (Don Dafore) is shown on the ground watching as he makes his pass. See more »

Quotes

The General: No man is really dead unless he breaks faith with the future, and no man is really alive unless he accepts his responsibility to it.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in MGM Parade: Episode #1.9 (1955) See more »

Soundtracks

I'll Get By
(1928) (uncredited)
Music by Fred E. Ahlert
Lyrics by Roy Turk
Played on harmonica by Ward Bond, sung by Irene Dunne and danced by her and Spencer Tracy
Played also in a juke box
In the score often as a leitmotif for the love between Irene Dunne and Spencer Tracy
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User Reviews

A wonderfully subtle study of the nature of love
20 September 2004 | by (Texas) – See all my reviews

Some reviewers have complained that certain parts of the movie are unbelievable--agreed. However, "A Guy Named Joe" isn't a documentary. It's a riff on the nature of love and loss.

I've seen many Spencer Tracey movies, but none in which he is so subtle, charming, and heartbreaking. I won't give away his final line at the end, but it is a very simple line, delivered simply. But in his understated way, he encapsulates the most complex of human emotions.

Irene Dunne, a truly fine actress, is at her best here. Yes, her style does take a little getting used to for modern audiences, but she, too, has some incredibly difficult work to do in this film, and she meets the task impressively. And Van Johnson, whom I've never really given much thought, turns in a fine performance here, early in his career.

It is obvious that these three actors had a healthy rapport together. The lines of communication had to have been wide open for them to have turned in such gentle, subtly nuanced performances.

I can't say enough about this film. It may sound corny, but if you have ever loved anyone, and if you have ever lost anyone, you will immediately recognize the characters in this film. It's also worth mentioning that the screenplay contains some of the most beautiful poetic language I've ever heard in a movie. If you've never seen "A Guy Named Joe," I strongly recommend it; it will do your heart good.


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