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Leave Her to Heaven (1945)

Approved  |   |  Drama, Film-Noir, Thriller  |  20 December 1945 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.7/10 from 7,217 users  
Reviews: 115 user | 71 critic

A writer meets a young socialite on board a train. The two fall in love and are married soon after, but her obsessive love for him threatens to be the undoing of both them and everyone else around them.



(screenplay), (novel)
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Airs Wed. Oct. 14, 8:00 PM on TCM


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Won 1 Oscar. Another 4 nominations. See more awards »



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Complete credited cast:
Russell Quinton
Mary Philips ...
Mrs. Berent
Dr. Saunders
Dr. Mason
Leick Thome


Novelist Richard Harland and socialite Ellen Berent meet on a train to New Mexico. They are immediately attracted to each other, soon fall in love and decide to get married, about which everyone they know is happy except Ellen's fiancé back home, politician Russell Quinton. However, Richard and Ellen's love for each other is different than that of the other as Ellen demonstrates in the manner which she tells everyone of their impending marriage. Ellen's love for Richard is an obsessive, possessive one, much like the love she had for her now deceased father, who Richard physically resembles. Ellen wants Richard all to herself and resents anyone who even remotely takes a place in his life and heart, even if his love for that person is not a romantic one. These people include most specifically Richard's physically disabled teen-aged brother Danny Harland, Ellen's own adopted sister Ruth Berent, and a young man neither has gotten a chance to really know yet. After time, Richard learns to ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Hers was the deadliest of the seven sins. See more »


Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

20 December 1945 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Que el cielo la juzgue  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)



Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


While shooting the drowning scene, John M. Stahl was particularly tough on Darryl Hickman. He never even referred to him by name, calling him "boy" or "son" the entire time. Then word came back from Hollywood that Darryl F. Zanuck thought the rushes were some of the best he had ever seen. Suddenly Hickman was one of Stahl's favourite actors, but he took to picking on Wilde and calling him "son" and "boy." See more »


The car that picks up Harland, the Berents, and Glen Robie at the railroad station in New Mexico also appears in the driveway at the hospital at Warm Springs parked right in front of Harland and Ellen. See more »


Ellen Berent Harland: The walls are as thin as paper and the acoustics disgustingly perfect.
See more »


Featured in Private Screenings: Child Stars (2006) See more »


Chickens in the Garden
aka "Treat My Daughter Kindly"
Sung by Chill Wills
See more »

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User Reviews

What a Movie!
14 February 2007 | by (USA) – See all my reviews

This is one of my favorite movies! The mystery was the lead character, Ellen; the cool, lovely and smoldering and so much more. Ellen Berent Hartman is the adult version of Rhoda Penmark in The Bad Seed (1956). Totally ruthless, unfeeling and riveting. Gene Tierney (Ellen) gave the performance of her career! Cornel Wilde was a good foil for her as her unsuspecting husband, Richard Hartman. This movie is about the rare breed of human who has feelings for no one, consumed by their own selfish desires. The costars almost faded in the background at times in comparison to Tierney's performance. Yet, every character had their moment to shine. Vincent Price does a great job portraying the jilted fiancé whose fierce determination to see justice done is just an expression of loss and unrequited love. Jean Crain was appropriately forlorn and Chil Wills' expression of horrid realization was chilling (no pun intended). With all of the cards seemingly laid on the table for the audience, there is still room for suspense. If you like a suspenseful drama, don't miss this movie. I watch it every chance I get.

18 of 25 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Commentary by Schickel + Hickman freakseed
Why did Harland get two years in prison? Turfseer
Tierney , Gardner or Hayworth? jim4146
House in New Mexico location? theladysif
'This movie may be the blackest Noir of them all.' wax1802
A great movie!!! madatthedirt
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