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The Thin Man Goes Home (1944)

Approved | | Comedy, Crime, Mystery | January 1945 (USA)
Nick and Nora visit Nick's hometown, and end up involved in a murder.



(screen play), (screen play) | 3 more credits »

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Stars: William Powell, Carole Lombard, Alice Brady


Cast overview, first billed only:
Laurabelle Ronson (as Gloria De Haven)
Dr. Bruce Clayworth
Hilda (as Anita Bolster)
Ralph Brooke ...
Peter Berton


Nick and Nora head to Nick's hometown of Sycamore Springs to spend some time with his parents. His father, a prominent local physician, was always a bit disappointed with Nick's choice of profession in particular and his lifestyle in general. With Nick's arrival however the towns folk, including several of the local criminal element, are convinced that he must be there on a case despite his protestations that he's just there for rest and relaxation. When someone is shot dead on his doorstep however, Nick finds himself working on a case whether he wants to or not. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Together again in M-G-M's riotous comedy. (Title lobby card).


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Parents Guide:





Release Date:

January 1945 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Thin Man's Rival  »


Box Office


$1,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


The fifth of six "Thin Man" movies released by MGM from 1934 to 1947 starring William Powell and Myrna Loy, filmed May 8-July 14 1944. See more »


While it has been said that the rifle in the film was Bren gun and not a Japanese weapon. But the Nambu Machine Gun looks very much like a Bren gun. The stock is the most easily spotted give aways. The Bren Guns stock come straight back from behind the pistol grip right behind the trigger guard. While the Nambu's stock has a slight drop to it, right behind the pistol grip. So the gun in this film is in fact a Japanese Nambu Machine Gun. See more »


Nicholas 'Nick' Charles: Well, we're very much obliged to you. Buy yourself a little smoke.
[presses a bill into the attendant's hand]
Baggage Attendant on Train: Thanks, but...
Nicholas 'Nick' Charles: Compliments of the pup.
[motions to Asta]
Baggage Attendant on Train: Spitz?
Nicholas 'Nick' Charles: No, just growls.
See more »


Followed by Song of the Thin Man (1947) See more »


Happy Birthday to You
Written by Mildred J. Hill and Patty S. Hill
Sung a cappella by Lucile Watson and Harry Davenport
See more »

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User Reviews

The Great American Dream
8 January 2002 | by See all my reviews

All the Thin Man films are great to watch, but this is one with which I find a bit easier to identify. Riskin, the writer of this film and long time scriptwriter for Frank Capra, was also the guy who wrote "It Happened One Night" and "Meet John Doe". This New York City born writer's attraction to average Joe small town values over Cosmopolitan glitz and decadence obvious in those two films is plain to see here. This is probably the image a lot of successful urbanites had about moving to the suburbs after WW2.

This is sort of an odd bird among Thin Man films in a couple of ways. First of all, Nick is astonishingly sober for a change. Don't look for any of those scenes of Nick and Nora trying to drink each other the table at some New York nightclub in this one. In fact, the nightclubs and high rises are totally gone as Nick takes Nora the glamorous New York socialite back for a visit to Nick's hometown, which bears a fairly strong likeness to Andy Hardy's. Nick's father is a retired M.D. not unlike the ones in the Norman Rockwell paintings. He wanted Nick to follow in his footsteps as a small town doctor instead of becoming a big city policeman and this is the first time the two of them have gotten together in years. This father-son reconciliation is the explanation for Nick's sudden uncharacteristic attraction to a sober, healthy lifestyle.

Nick's father is actually fairly proud of Nick and keeps a scrapbook about all his adventures. The whole town knows about Nick Charles the famous Detective. I sort of see invisible images of G.I.s returning home from WW2 in a lot of this movie. Nick's celebrity as a tough, smart local boy who went off to bring gun toting gangsters to justice in the big city of aristocratic sophisticates and Broadway nights is not very far removed from how most Americans probably saw the guys who went off to liberate Paris and Europe in WW2. Nora fits into that picture as a sort of "Mrs. Miniver" figure of what American's admired about European sophication brought back home to meet the folks.

The homecoming hero vision of Nick peacefully turning into a happy coach potato in a post war suburbia however is not what we want to see. What everybody loves about the Thin Man films is their contrary to Hollywood stereotype revelation that life after marriage can actually be exciting. Nora decides to get Nick off the coach with an "I Love Lucy" sort of plot twist that spreads a rumor around town that Nick is secretly working on a detective case. The result of course is that all the various local characters with small town secrets to hide think he's after them and all the mystery murders and skeletons start coming out of the closet like we've all been waiting to see. Nick and Nora are such a fun couple, aren't they?

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