MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Up 2,242 this week

The Strange Love of Martha Ivers (1946)

 -  Drama | Film-Noir  -  24 July 1946 (USA)
7.5
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.5/10 from 4,836 users  
Reviews: 75 user | 30 critic

A ruthless, domineering woman is married to an alcoholic D.A., her childhood companion who is the only living witness to her murder of her rich aunt seventeen years earlier.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (story) (as Jack Patrick) , 1 more credit »
0Check in
0Share...

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Amazon Instant Video

ON DISC

Editors' Spotlight

IMDb Picks: March

IMDb's editors share the movies and TV shows they are excited to see in March.

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 29 titles
created 04 Sep 2012
 
a list of 46 titles
created 10 Jan 2013
 
a list of 34 titles
created 10 Mar 2013
 
a list of 27 titles
created 19 May 2013
 
a list of 25 titles
created 20 Oct 2013
 

Related Items

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: The Strange Love of Martha Ivers (1946)

The Strange Love of Martha Ivers (1946) on IMDb 7.5/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of The Strange Love of Martha Ivers.
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Certificate: Passed Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A soldier runs away rather than receive the Medal of Honor, so his buddy gets permission to investigate, and love and death soon follow.

Director: John Cromwell
Stars: Humphrey Bogart, Lizabeth Scott, Morris Carnovsky
Certificate: Passed Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Through a fluke circumstance a ruthless woman stumbles across a suitcase filled with $60,000, and she is determined to hold onto it even it if means murder.

Director: Byron Haskin
Stars: Lizabeth Scott, Don DeFore, Dan Duryea
I Walk Alone (1948)
Film-Noir | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Frankie Madison leaves prison expecting a share from his ex-partner. But Prohibition bootlegging didn't prepare Frankie for Big Business.

Director: Byron Haskin
Stars: Burt Lancaster, Lizabeth Scott, Kirk Douglas
Pitfall (1948)
Crime | Film-Noir | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

John Forbes is a family man who's tired of the 9 to 5 humdrum of his job an insurance company executive. Life gets a little more exciting for him when he calls upon femme fatale Mona ... See full summary »

Director: André De Toth
Stars: Dick Powell, Lizabeth Scott, Jane Wyatt
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Struggling artist Geoffrey Carroll meets Sally whilst on holiday in the country. A romance develops but he doesn't tell her he's already married. Suffering from mental illness, Geoffreyy ... See full summary »

Director: Peter Godfrey
Stars: Humphrey Bogart, Barbara Stanwyck, Alexis Smith
Drama | Film-Noir | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Whilst on the telephone, an invalid woman overhears what she thinks is a murder plot and attempts to prevent it.

Director: Anatole Litvak
Stars: Barbara Stanwyck, Burt Lancaster, Ann Richards
The Racket (1951)
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

The big national crime syndicate has moved into town, partnering up with local crime boss Nick Scanlon. There are only two problems: First, Nick is the violent type, preferring to do things... See full summary »

Directors: John Cromwell, Mel Ferrer, and 3 more credits »
Stars: Robert Mitchum, Lizabeth Scott, Robert Ryan
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

A doctor returning from the Korean War to his hometown in Pennsylvania must choose what next to do with his life

Director: Irving Rapper
Stars: Charlton Heston, Lizabeth Scott, Dianne Foster
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

War hero flier Bob Collins goes on a war bond selling tour with two buddies, and substitute "chaperone" Ivy Hotchkiss. Bob's a cheerful Lothario with several girls in every town on the tour... See full summary »

Director: John Farrow
Stars: Robert Cummings, Lizabeth Scott, Don DeFore
Certificate: Passed Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Thelma Jordon is in love with a jewel thief, Tony Laredo, and he persuades her to go live with her rich aunt, and steal her jewels. During the robbery, she shoots her formerly-rich aunt, ... See full summary »

Director: Robert Siodmak
Stars: Barbara Stanwyck, Wendell Corey, Paul Kelly
Desert Fury (1947)
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

The daughter of a Nevada casino owner gets involved with a racketeer, despite everyone's efforts to separate them.

Director: Lewis Allen
Stars: John Hodiak, Lizabeth Scott, Burt Lancaster
Paid in Full (1950)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Jane Langley has always done all she can for her selfish sibling Nancy. When both sisters fall in love with handsome Bill Prentice, Jane graciously steps aside. Relationships among all ... See full summary »

Director: William Dieterle
Stars: Robert Cummings, Lizabeth Scott, Diana Lynn
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
...
...
Roman Bohnen ...
...
Young Sam
Janis Wilson ...
Young Martha
...
Frank Orth ...
James Flavin ...
Mickey Kuhn ...
Young Walter
Charles D. Brown ...
Edit

Storyline

In 1928, young heiress Martha Ivers fails to run off with friend Sam Masterson, and is involved in fatal events. Years later, Sam returns to find Martha the power behind Iverstown and married to "good boy" Walter O'Neil, now district attorney. At first, Sam is more interested in displaced blonde Toni Marachek than in his boyhood friends; but they draw him into a convoluted web of plotting and cross-purposes. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Fate drew them together... and only murder could part them!

Genres:

Drama | Film-Noir

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

24 July 1946 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Love Lies Bleeding  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Kirk Douglas's debut. See more »

Goofs

As Sam, after a beating, enters Walter's room with the butler John. See more »

Quotes

Martha Ivers as a girl: You don't own the whole world.
Mrs. Ivers: Enough to make sure you're always brought back to me.
See more »


Soundtracks

Strange Love
Written by Eddie Heyman & Miklós Rózsa
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Whisper her name: Stanwyck as twisted steeltown autocrat
24 May 2003 | by (Western New York) – See all my reviews

Lewis Milestone's The Strange Love of Martha Ivers presents a, well, strange case. Much if not most of it fits comfortably into the noir cycle that was just gathering its head of steam. But its look, save some recurrent bus-station shots, suggests lavish and well-lit prestige productions (as does its length), and in its deep-rooted narrative it harks back to sprawling, brooding melodramas such as Kings Row.

That narrative is broken-backed as well, with two disjointed time frames. The movie opens in 1928 in sooty Iverstown, a steel city almost certainly somewhere in Pennsylvania. There we meet, as teenagers, three of the story's principals: Unruly Martha, making yet another attempt to run away from her wealthy, rigid aunt (Judith Anderson); her street-urchin buddy Sammy; and prissy school-teacher's son Walter. On the night Anderson is bludgeoned to death (to the tune of lightning, thunder and crashing rains), Sammy waits for Martha to join him; when she doesn't, he signs up with the circus and blows town.

Fast-forward to 1946, when decorated veteran Sammy (Van Heflin), headed west, cracks up his car and finds himself once more in Iverstown. He meets up with the fourth main character, Lizabeth Scott, who not unlike himself has been knocked about (she's a jailbird). When the police lock her up for violating parole, he pays a visit to his old friend Walter (Kirk Douglas, in his debut), now the district attorney, to secure her release.

Douglas, who rarely draws a sober breath, holds the office thanks to the ambition and power of his wife Martha (Barbara Stanwyck). (The original publicity campaign cautioned `Whisper her name!') When she shows up unexpectedly and warmly greets Heflin, all Douglas' insecurities and jealousies erupt; not only does he suspect that Heflin has always been his wife's first love but he fears that Heflin, privy to the long-buried secret of the aunt's death, can undo his marriage, his success, and the industrial empire Stanwyck has built. He takes heavy-handed measures to defend himself, blackmailing Scott into framing Heflin. But hasn't reckoned with the resourcefulness of his adversary – or with the wilfulness of his wife.

But the story is really plotted along romantic coordinates whose intersections are punctuated by Miklos Rozsa's throbbing score. Douglas loves Stanwyck, who really loves Heflin, while Scott loves Heflin, who loves her back but still has unfinished business with Stanwyck (no wonder Douglas drinks – nobody loves him). And in the rondelay of turnabouts and betrayals (or seeming betrayals), The Strange Love of Martha Ivers slips perilously close to soap opera. Its stately pace and prosperous look give it a dated, ponderous feel, quite unlike the rough sleekness of film noir, though there's an unmistakable echo of Double Indemnity – Stanwyck's performance as Martha Ivers reworks hers as Phyllis Dietrichson, right down to the concluding love-death tableau.

But, while occasionally cumbersome, The Strange Love of Martha Ivers stands on its own as an overwrought, obsessive drama, with a very topical acknowledgment of the insulation that money and power can buy, and of the moral and social corruption that inflexibly comes as part of the package. It's a strange movie, all right, but a haunting one as well.


33 of 36 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Question about scene driving into Iverstown eugenie51
Lizbeth Scott DianaDorsFan
judith anderson as Mrs. Ivers ksf-2
Lizabeth Scott is the Real Star kjewitt
Van Heflin...!!! olebuttermilksky5-1
Praised, but still underrated. danielj_old999
Discuss The Strange Love of Martha Ivers (1946) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?