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The Strange Love of Martha Ivers (1946)

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

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(screenplay), (story "Love Lies Bleeding") (as Jack Patrick)
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »
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Cast

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Charles D. Brown ...
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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!


Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

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Details

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Release Date:

13 September 1946 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Love Lies Bleeding  »

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Future film director and producer Blake Edwards had an uncredited bit part as a sailor who hitches a ride with Sam. See more »

Goofs

When Martha drops Sam off at the hotel after their trip to the mountain, as she pulls off, you can see a black cable attached to the rear underside of her car that is obviously some sort of technical equipment used in filming the scene. See more »

Quotes

Walter O'Neil: I wasn't going to shoot.
Sam Masterson: I wasn't gonna wait and see.
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Connections

Referenced in Mystery Science Theater 3000: The Magic Sword (1992) See more »

Soundtracks

Strange Love
(uncredited)
Music by Miklós Rózsa
Lyrics by Edward Heyman
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
You can't go home again
10 December 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Due to a car accident, Van Heflin has to return to his home town in "The Strange Love of Martha Ivers," and walks into a world full of blackmail and murder. 18 years earlier, he ran away from home the night his friend Martha's aunt was murdered while Martha, her friend Walter, and Walter's father were in the Ivers house. Now he returns to find Walter (Kirk Douglas) is the drunken district attorney and married to Martha (Barbara Stanwyck), the richest woman in town - Iverstown is, after all, named after her family. Though Martha has never fallen out of love with Heflin, her husband thinks he's there to blackmail them because, though a man was hung for killing her aunt, it was Martha who did so while her aunt (Judith Anderson) was beating Martha's cat. In my opinion, she deserved to die. D.A. Douglas uses a troubled woman Heflin has met, played by sultry Lizabeth Scott, to attempt to drive Heflin out of town. But it doesn't work.

A top-notch cast carries this intriguing story along. Heflin was evidently considered a matinée idol in his day - in both this and Possessed, women swoon over him. My mother loved him, so he must have had something. He was a good actor, with a smoothness and an engaging smile. And he plays the part with a certain ambiguousness - up to a certain point, you're not sure if he knows Stanwyck's guilty secret or not. Stanwyck, beautiful and elegant as the troubled Martha, does a great job playing a twisted sister if there ever was one (though I still don't blame her for killing that miserable Judith Anderson). Douglas, in an early performance, holds his own well as the pathetic, wimpy Walter. Lizabeth Scott is lovely, sad, and vulnerable as Toni, the woman Heflin meets while in town.

Very good mid-'40s film.


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