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Phantom Lady (1944)

Passed  -  Crime | Drama | Film-Noir  -  28 January 1944 (USA)
7.4
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Ratings: 7.4/10 from 2,074 users  
Reviews: 52 user | 21 critic

A beautiful secretary risks her life to try to find the elusive woman who may prove her boss didn't murder his selfish wife.

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(screenplay), (based on the novel by)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Alan Curtis ...
Aurora Miranda ...
Estela Monteiro (as Aurora)
...
Inspector Burgess
Fay Helm ...
...
Andrew Tombes ...
...
Detective Chewing Gum
Joseph Crehan ...
Detective Tom
Doris Lloyd ...
Kettisha
Virginia Brissac ...
Dr. Chase
...
District Attorney
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Storyline

Unhappily married Scott Henderson spends the evening on a no-name basis with a hat-wearing woman he picked up in a bar. Returning home, he finds his wife strangled and becomes the prime suspect in her murder. Every effort to establish his alibi fails; oddly no one seems to remember seeing the phantom lady (or her hat). In prison, Scott gives up hope but his faithful secretary, "Kansas," doggedly follows evanescent clues through shadowy nocturnal streets. Can she save Scott in time? Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

secretary | murder | bar | prison | hat | See All (45) »

Taglines:

IT'S UNIQUE...suspense...mystery...drama! See more »


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

28 January 1944 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Condemned to Hang  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

After the film's release, Jacques Press and Eddie Cherkose sued Universal for $20,000 for not getting on-screen credit for their song "Chick-ee-Chick." See more »

Goofs

Near the end, when Carol (aka Kansas) is in Jack's apartment, she places the hat on a large statue-head, then tends to Jack who is lying down. When she then walks to the bedroom, the hat is no longer on the statue. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Ann Terry: [to bartender] Give me a nickel, please.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Omega Factor: Visitations (1979) See more »

Soundtracks

Chick-ee-Chick
(1944) (uncredited)
Music by Jacques Press
Lyrics by Eddie Cherkose
Performed by Aurora Miranda and showgirls at the Casino
See more »

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User Reviews

Top-notch "B" Noir thriller will leave you guessing
5 April 2003 | by (San Francisco) – See all my reviews

Seldom have my expectations been as often derailed as in The Phantom Lady. The plot--while a bit farfetched--is never boring or predictable. Although it's a smaller film than say, The Maltese Falcon or The Big Sleep, it is immensely satisfying.

Ella Raines is the real stand-out here. Not only is she great to look at (think half-way between Veronica Lake and Lauren Bacall) she also acts circles 'round the two leading men. Luminous, expressive yet subtle, she is perhaps a better actress than those two icons, if slightly less perfect-looking than Lake and a bit less magnetic than Bacall.

Thomas Gomez turns in a surprisingly complex and interesting performance, but don't expect too much from Franchot Tone. Although his acting abilities need no defense, he didn't do much with this role.

Sure, there are plot holes, a couple of contrived turns, and at least two ridiculous performances (Elisha Cook and Aurora Miranda) but all B Noir has its faults, and this one wins by dint of its unpredictability and pacing, and some great cinematography. Oh--and miss Raines.


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