116 user 68 critic

The Ghost and Mrs. Muir (1947)

Not Rated | | Drama, Fantasy, Mystery | May 1947 (USA)
2:38 | Trailer

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

In 1900, a young widow finds her seaside cottage is haunted...and forms a unique relationship with the ghost.


(screen play), (from the novel by)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »



Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

The Ghost & Mrs. Muir (1968–1970)
Comedy | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Lovely young widow Carolyn Muir, her two young children, and the maid discover that the New England seaside house they've moved into is haunted by the former owner -- an old salt named ... See full summary »

Stars: Hope Lange, Edward Mulhare, Reta Shaw
Comedy | Drama | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

An old roué arrives in Hades to review his life with Satan, who will rule on his eligibility to enter the Underworld.

Director: Ernst Lubitsch
Stars: Gene Tierney, Don Ameche, Charles Coburn
Drama | Film-Noir | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

A writer meets a young socialite on board a train. The two fall in love and are married soon after, but her obsessive love for him threatens to be the undoing of both them and everyone else around them.

Director: John M. Stahl
Stars: Gene Tierney, Cornel Wilde, Jeanne Crain
Dragonwyck (1946)
Drama | Thriller | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

A simple Connecticut farm girl is recruited by a distant relative, an aristocratic patroon, to be governess to his young daughter in his Hudson Valley mansion.

Director: Joseph L. Mankiewicz
Stars: Gene Tierney, Walter Huston, Vincent Price
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

A letter is addressed to three wives from their "best friend" Addie Ross, announcing that she is running away with one of their husbands: but she does not say which one.

Director: Joseph L. Mankiewicz
Stars: Jeanne Crain, Linda Darnell, Ann Sothern
Laura (1944)
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

A police detective falls in love with the woman whose murder he is investigating.

Director: Otto Preminger
Stars: Gene Tierney, Dana Andrews, Clifton Webb
Drama | Film-Noir | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

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.

Director: Edmund Goulding
Stars: Tyrone Power, Gene Tierney, John Payne
Crime | Film-Noir | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

Det. Sgt. Mark Dixon wants to be something his old man wasn't: a guy on the right side of the law. But Dixon's vicious nature will get the better of him.

Director: Otto Preminger
Stars: Dana Andrews, Gene Tierney, Gary Merrill
Crime | Film-Noir | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

A small-time grifter and nightclub tout takes advantage of some fortuitous circumstances and tries to become a big-time player as a wrestling promoter.

Director: Jules Dassin
Stars: Richard Widmark, Gene Tierney, Googie Withers
Drama | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

The only son of wealthy widow Violet Venable dies while on vacation with his cousin Catherine. What the girl saw was so horrible that she went insane; now Mrs. Venable wants Catherine lobotomized to cover up the truth.

Director: Joseph L. Mankiewicz
Stars: Elizabeth Taylor, Katharine Hepburn, Montgomery Clift
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

A hard-working mother inches towards disaster as she divorces her husband and starts a successful restaurant business to support her spoiled daughter.

Director: Michael Curtiz
Stars: Joan Crawford, Jack Carson, Zachary Scott
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

A private eye escapes his past to run a gas station in a small town, but his past catches up with him. Now he must return to the big city world of danger, corruption, double crosses and duplicitous dames.

Director: Jacques Tourneur
Stars: Robert Mitchum, Jane Greer, Kirk Douglas


Complete credited cast:
Edna Best ...
Robert Coote ...
Isobel Elsom ...
Eva Muir


At the beginning of the twentieth century, Mrs. Edwin Muir - Lucy - widowed for one year, decides to move out of her controlling in-law's home in London to the English seaside with her adolescent daughter Anna and their long devoted maid Martha. Despite the rental agent trying to dissuade her, Lucy decides to rent Gull Cottage at Whitecliff-by-the-Sea. She learns first hand before she makes the decision the rental agent's hesitance is because the cottage is haunted, supposedly by its now deceased former owner, seaman Captain Daniel Gregg. After she moves in, she does meet the spirit of Captain Gregg face-to-face. Because she refuses to be scared away by his presence, the two come to an understanding, including that he will not make his presence known to Anna. As time progresses, the two develop a friendship and a bond. Despite his statements to her that she needs to live her life including finding another husband, Daniel seems not to approve of any of the men that enter her life, ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


THE SPIRIT... so willing! THE FLESH... so weak! THE ROMANCE... so wonderful! See more »


Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

May 1947 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

L'aventure de Madame Muir  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Captain Daniel Gregg died in 1896. See more »


Although Captain Gregg promised never to speak with Anna, he clearly breaks his word. Evidence of this can be seen as he throws the in-laws out of the house: Anna can be seen in the foreground watching without fear or confusion, thus revealing that she is aware of his presence and not scared of him. See more »


Captain Gregg: [discussing Mr. Fairley] And the way he was smirking at you, like a cat in the fishmonger's! You should have slapped his face!
Lucy Muir: Why? I found him... rather charming!
Captain Gregg: "Rather charming!" Now you're starting to talk like him!
Lucy Muir: How in blazes do you want me to talk?
Captain Gregg: That's better!
See more »


Referenced in Grace Under Fire: The Ghost and Mrs. Kelly (1996) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

A fabulous two-hour genre tour
15 February 2005 | by (New York City) – See all my reviews

After her husband dies, Lucy Muir (Gene Tierney) decides to move away from London to a small seaside resort. She has to persuade the real estate agent, Mr. Coombe (Robert Coote), to show her the home that sounds most attractive to her--Gull Cottage. At first she can't figure out why he's so reluctant to pursue the home with her, but while she's looking at the "cottage", she experiences an apparent haunting. Both she and Mr. Coombe go running out of the house. To Mr. Coombe's surprise, Lucy decides to rent the Gull Cottage anyway.

Director Joseph L. Mankiewicz' The Ghost and Mrs. Muir combines a number of genres in an unusual way, gently poking fun at the conventions of each as they arrive in turn. The film begins as if it will be a somewhat traditional 1940s horror story. The setting is reminiscent of Alfred Hitchcock's Rebecca (1940) and Lewis Allen's The Uninvited (1944). Mrs. Muir's first visit to the home has classic understated "eerie" moments, with Mrs. Muir dressed in a creepy, Gothic black veil, coat and dress (ostensibly, she's still in mourning).

Shortly after, the film quickly moves into more comic territory. A more straightforward dramatic section follows, then romance, back to drama, and finally it ends as a fantasy film. That might sound like a bit of a mess, but Mankiewicz easily unifies the proceedings so that the genre tour is really only apparent on analysis. In a book about the film by Frieda Grafe, published by the British Film Institute, Mankiewicz is quoted as saying that he considered the film to be "hack work", and that his intention was primarily to show the studio that he was capable of delivering efficient craftsmanship. While a quick glance at my rating confirms that I wouldn't denigrate the film as "hack work", the genre parade is interesting in light of Mankiewicz' stated intent.

A central theme throughout The Ghost and Mrs. Muir, directly hinted at a number of times by dialogue about progressivist attitudes in the twentieth century, is that of gender roles. The theme is most overtly realized when Mrs. Muir pens a salty seafaring book and takes it to a publisher. She is dismissed at first with an assumption that she must be presenting shallow, sappy "women's literature", but is quickly published once Mr. Sproule (Whitford Kane) realizes the novelty of the book. Of course, he assumes that she must have been shopping it for her husband, or some other gentleman friend.

The theme is worked throughout the film in countless more subtextual ways, also, and leads to an interesting interpretation of the bulk of the film--is Captain Daniel Gregg (Rex Harrison) real? Or is he a figment of Lucy and her daughter's imaginations? There is a strong suggestion that he was just imaginary, sparked in Lucy's mind by his portrait, the house, and the maritime décor still present. Literally, the film suggests at one point that Lucy and her daughter are fooling themselves into believing he was imaginary, but it could be read as a double cross (or a double negation)--we are fooled into believing that they're just fooling themselves, and the reality is that Captain Gregg is a catalyst for allowing the gender role changes exhibited by Lucy and her daughter, who even basically asks her boyfriend to marry her, rather than the other way around.

At any rate, real or not, Captain Gregg is an enjoyable character in an enjoyable, lightly comic film that pleasantly mixes a variety of genres. Fans of the film should be aware that it was based on a novel by R.A. Dick, and spawned a television sitcom with the same title that first aired in the U.S. in 1968 and ran for 50 episodes.

61 of 68 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
What is 'that word'? mustang_steph
The Ending Surprised Me marhefka
a BEAUTIFUL EPISODE FROM THE tv SERIES! - Medicine Ball! mcannady1
Fans of the movie- How old are you? winkwinknudgenudge
Did it make you cry? threehayeskids
So he lied...? Dscully100
Discuss The Ghost and Mrs. Muir (1947) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: