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Blithe Spirit (1945)

 -  Comedy | Fantasy  -  14 May 1945 (UK)
7.1
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Ratings: 7.1/10 from 3,096 users  
Reviews: 48 user | 35 critic

Adapted from a play by Noel Coward, Charles and his second wife Ruth, are haunted by the ghost of his first wife, Elvira. Medium Madame Arcati tries to help things out by contacting the ghost.

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(adapted for the screen by), (adapted for the screen by), 3 more credits »
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Title: Blithe Spirit (1945)

Blithe Spirit (1945) on IMDb 7.1/10

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Won 1 Oscar. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Constance Cummings ...
Kay Hammond ...
Margaret Rutherford ...
Hugh Wakefield ...
Joyce Carey ...
Jacqueline Clarke ...
Edith (as Jaqueline Clarke)
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Storyline

To get background for a new book, author Charles and his second wife Ruth light-heartedly arrange for local mystic Madame Arcati to give a séance. The unfortunate result is that Charles' first wife Elvira returns from beyond the grave to make his life something of a misery. Ruth too gets increasingly irritated with her supernatural rival, but M.Arcati is at her wit's end as to how to sort things out. Written by Jeremy Perkins {J-26}

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

One Wife Too Many

Genres:

Comedy | Fantasy

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

14 May 1945 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Uma Mulher do Outro Mundo  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Margaret Rutherford and Kay Hammond played Madame Arcati and Elvira, respectively, in the original West End production. Jacqueline Clarke played Edith in the original Broadway production. See more »

Goofs

After the séance when Elvira first appears, she flops onto the settee by the fire. As her dress billows you can see wear the green ghostly make up ends half way up her leg, showing normal skin above the make up line. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
words on a Victorian sampler: "When we are young / We read and believe / The most fantastic things. / When we are older / We learn with regret / That these things cannot be"
Narrator: We are quite, quite wrong!
See more »

Crazy Credits

The voice at the end of the credits page that utters, "We are quite, quite WRONG!" is Noel Coward's See more »

Connections

Referenced in Mystery Science Theater 3000: The Screaming Skull (1998) See more »

Soundtracks

Always
(uncredited)
Written by Irving Berlin
Sung by Jacqueline Clarke
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
A comic masterpiece with all the right ingredients
26 August 2004 | by (Cincinnati, Ohio) – See all my reviews

Noel Coward wrote Blithe Spirit in 5 days during Britain's darkest days of the Second World War. The play completed 3 decades as Britain's longest run in West End for a comedic play. The film which was adapted from the play was directed by David Lean and incorporated some of the most sophisticated special effects yet seen in a movie. The film tackles some dark themes such as death and falling in and out of love. The characters themselves are on the face of it unsympathetic. Elvira is a siren, Ruth is shrewish and Charles a misogynist. Despite this the film works well as a comedy because of the quick and clever dialogue between the characters and the scene stealing performances of Margaret Rutherford's Madame Arcarti. You end laughing at and sometimes with the characters as one would do a Shakespeare comedy. Never has a film about death been so funny


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