The Razor's Edge (1946)

Approved  |   |  Drama, Film-Noir  |  December 1946 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.5/10 from 3,714 users  
Reviews: 78 user | 27 critic

An adventuresome young man goes off to find himself and loses his socialite fiancée in the process. But when he returns 10 years later, she will stop at nothing to get him back, even though she is already married.



(screen play), (from the novel by), 1 more credit »
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »



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Complete credited cast:
Lucile Watson ...
Frank Latimore ...
Fritz Kortner ...
Joseph - Butler
Cecil Humphreys ...
Holy Man
Harry Pilcer ...
Specialty Dancer
Cobina Wright Sr. ...
Princess Novemali


Well-to-do Chicagoan, Larry Darrell, breaks off his engagement to Isabel and travels the world seeking enlightenment, eventually finding his guru India. Isabel marries Gray, and following the crash of 1929, is invited to live in Paris with her rich, social climbing, Uncle Elliot. During a sojurn there, Larry, having attained his goal, is reunited with Isabel. While slumming one night Larry, Isabel and company are shocked to discover Sophie, a friend from Chicago. Having lost her husband and child in a tragic accident, Sophie is living the low-life with the help of drugs and an abusive brute. Larry tries to rehabilitate her, but his efforts are sabotaged by Isabel who tries in vain to reignite Larry's interest in herself. Written by Richard Blinkal <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Hunger no love . . . woman . . . or wealth could satisfy!


Drama | Film-Noir


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Release Date:

December 1946 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

W. Somerset Maugham's The Razor's Edge  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$1,200,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


W. Somerset Maugham was hired to write a screenplay, which is still on file in studio records. It is uncertain how much of his version, if any, was used in the final script. See more »


When Tyrone Power is getting the invitation from Elsa Lancaster, the lighting from the front right casts the actors' shadows on the wall as they walk to the window. As Tyrone Power exits through the window, the shadow of a woman's head appears on the wall. See more »


Elliott Templeton: Am I right in surmising that you thought that if you could get him to come back here, it was almost inevitable that the inevitable should happen?
Isabel Bradley: No one could put it more, delicately.
Elliott Templeton: We know what the consequences may be when a poor girl strays from the narrow path of virtue.
See more »

Crazy Credits

When the screenplay credits are shown, a curious symbol appears near W. Somerset Maugham's name. It's a symbol meant to ward off the evil eye, and it more often than not appeared on the covers of many of Maugham's novels. See more »


Featured in 20th Century-Fox: The First 50 Years (1997) See more »


Auprès de ma blonde
Played when Larry and Kosti are at the cafe
See more »

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User Reviews

a coming of age film
5 February 2001 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This film, and the book on which it is based, made strong impressions on me in my youth, but even more so now that I am past middle age. A magnificent cast - Tyrone Power, Gene Tierney, Anne Baxter, Clifton Webb, John Payne, Herbert Marshall, help to tell the story of a man who walks "in another man's shoes" -- and totally to his own drummer -- after the first world war. In his quest for spirituality and goodness, he is at odds with the materialism and obsession around him. The different layers of "The Razor's Edge" demand attention: Larry's physical desire for Isabel, a woman it turns out he doesn't even know; Isabel's cold-heartedness and desire to possess Larry; and Larry's search for the meaning of life, while the people he loves disintegrate around him from lack of values or hope. These are all seen through the eyes of Somerset Maugham, played by Marshall. Larry's final confrontation scene with Isabel (Tierney) about Sophie (Baxter) is bone-chilling -- Power, who had a tendency to be sometimes stiff and a bit removed from his material, uses that flaw to excellent advantage as Larry Darrell. It's not a showy role, but he's wonderful, and he's reading of poetry in Sophie's room is unforgettable.

Highly recommended.

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