Paul, a young man whose father was once lieutenant Governor of California before his untimely death, has a strange, recurring dream in which his mother falls in love with a dangerous man (... See full summary »

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (original story)
Reviews

Watch Now

$0.00 with Prime Video

WATCH NOW
ON DISC

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Ruthless (1948)
Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Horace Vendig shows himself to the world as a rich philanthropist. In fact, the history of his rise from his unhappy broken home shows this to be far from the case. After being taken in by ... See full summary »

Director: Edgar G. Ulmer
Stars: Zachary Scott, Louis Hayward, Diana Lynn
Certificate: Passed Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A man dreams he committed murder, then begins to suspect it was real.

Director: Maxwell Shane
Stars: Paul Kelly, DeForest Kelley, Ann Doran
Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A research scientist conducting experiments on a new anaesthetic finds herself being blackmailed by a women she accidentally knocked down with her car; the woman wasn't hurt, but a scheming... See full summary »

Director: Anthony Mann
Stars: Brenda Marshall, William Gargan, Hillary Brooke
Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Bachelor Harry Quincey, head designer in a small-town cloth factory, lives with his selfish sisters, glamorous hypochondriac Lettie and querulous widow Hester. His developing relationship ... See full summary »

Director: Robert Siodmak
Stars: George Sanders, Ella Raines, Geraldine Fitzgerald
Impact (1949)
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

A unfaithful wife plots with her lover to kill her husband, but the lover is accidentally killed instead. The husband stays in hiding, and lets his wife be charged with conspiracy.

Director: Arthur Lubin
Stars: Brian Donlevy, Ella Raines, Charles Coburn
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

Two narcotics agents go after a gang of murderous drug dealers who use ships docking at the New York harbor to smuggle in their contraband.

Director: Laslo Benedek
Stars: Scott Brady, Richard Rober, K.T. Stevens
Half a Sinner (1940)
Adventure | Comedy | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Although young and beautiful, schoolteacher Anne Gladden fears a dull future. She finally decides to take a walk on the wild side, splurging on some fashionable new clothes and setting off ... See full summary »

Director: Al Christie
Stars: Heather Angel, John 'Dusty' King, Constance Collier
Road House (1948)
Certificate: Passed Action | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A night club owner becomes infatuated with a torch singer and frames his best friend/manager for embezzlement when the chanteuse falls in love with him.

Director: Jean Negulesco
Stars: Ida Lupino, Celeste Holm, Richard Widmark
Drama | Film-Noir | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Flamarion, expert marksman, is entertaining people in a show which features Connie, beautiful woman and her husband Al. Flamarion and Connie fall in love and decide to get rid of the ... See full summary »

Director: Anthony Mann
Stars: Erich von Stroheim, Mary Beth Hughes, Dan Duryea
Crime | Film-Noir | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Secretary tries to help her boss, who is framed for a murder.

Director: Henry Hathaway
Stars: Lucille Ball, Clifton Webb, William Bendix
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A WWII tale of romance that begins during New Orlean's "Mardi Gras" celebration when a soldier and a girl meet and fall in love. He asks her to marry him but she decides to wait until his ... See full summary »

Director: Edgar G. Ulmer
Stars: Nancy Coleman, Margaret Lindsay, Phillip Reed
Bluebeard (1944)
Crime | Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

In Paris, an artist hires portrait models, and after he finishes their portraits, he strangles them.

Director: Edgar G. Ulmer
Stars: John Carradine, Jean Parker, Nils Asther
Edit

Cast

Cast overview:
Jimmy Lydon ...
Paul Cartwright (as James Lydon)
...
...
Virginia Cartwright
...
Dr. Vincent
Charles Arnt ...
Professor Muhlbach
George Reed ...
Benjamin (as George H. Reed)
Jayne Hazard ...
Dorothy Cartwright
Jimmy Clark ...
George Hanover
Mary McLeod ...
Lydia
Pierre Watkin ...
District Attorney Wallace Armstrong
Sonia Sorel ...
Charlotte Farber
Victor Potel ...
Mac - Game Warden (as Vic Potel)
George Sherwood ...
Langdon
Gene Roth ...
Sparky (as Gene Stutenroth)
...
Edit

Storyline

Paul, a young man whose father was once lieutenant Governor of California before his untimely death, has a strange, recurring dream in which his mother falls in love with a dangerous man (Brett Curtis), a dream which also contains the image of his father's death in an automobile accident under mysterious circumstances. Through the help of his friend, a psychiatrist, Paul realizes that his dream is coming true, and that his mother is falling under Curtis's influence. Curtis, in fact, is a homicidal maniac who lives as an out-patient at the sanitarium of the unscrupulous Dr. Muhlbach. When Curtis makes an attempt to marry Paul's mother, Paul intervenes, and after a series of events discovers the truth behind his dreams. Written by Wheeler Winston Dixon

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

31 March 1945 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

First Illusion  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The failure of the original copyright holder to renew the film's copyright resulted in it falling into public domain, meaning that virtually anyone could duplicate and sell a VHS/DVD copy of the film. Therefore, many of the versions of this film available on the market are either severely (and usually badly) edited and/or of extremely poor quality, having been duped from second- or third-generation (or more) copies of the film. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Edgar G. Ulmer - The Man Off-screen (2004) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Morbidly interesting thriller focused on precognitive dreams.
7 April 2004 | by See all my reviews



Much has been made of Mr. Ulmer's talent, and here, he makes good use of it. While someone on the order of a brooding Farley Granger, for example, would have been preferable as the lead, James Lydon, nonetheless, turns in a commendable job as Paul Cartwright, a college student haunted by prophetic dreams. It's genuinely refreshing for a change, to look back upon a time, when teen-agers were still presented in a wholesome and appealing light. And, Mr. Lydon, movieland's "Henry Aldrich" certainly had the credentials for those traits. But, here, Lydon is caught in a story of deathly threats, with implications far more threatening, than the "Golly--Gee!" consequences of smashing his date's corsage for the Senior Prom.

As for the plot, Paul, manages to prevent his wealthy widowed mother from marrying a male gold-digger, with a string of unsolved murders in his past. Naturally, Paul has to undergo any number of travails before the violent denouement, including amateur "detective" work that triggers both a feigned and a near real nervous collapse. He is even "voluntarily" committed to an asylum where further sinister developments befall him. The ending, cleverly finds him lost in an unconscious dream state again, but now enjoying a vision of a liberated and happy future.

Mr. Lydon was "slumming" at PRC, on loan from Paramount, and preparatory to his turns with glamorous Elizabeth Taylor in "Life With Father" and "Cynthia" both glossy, expensive, mainline productions.

Nonetheless, this PRC production possesses relatively handsome art direction and production values, given that, based on production files with the American Film Institute, it was actually shot in just 15 days, (as opposed to the erroneous oft-cited 6 day schedule.) By the way, take a good, hard, look at the exteriors of the Lydon family chateau in this. Look familiar? Yes, it's the same house used as Robert Walker's home in "Strangers on a Train" and June Lockhart's in "Bury Me Dead."

All told, if you enjoy crime stories focused on young people trapped in traumatic circumstances, it's definately worth a look.


21 of 21 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Film showing jamerson5
Discuss Strange Illusion (1945) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?