MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Up 4,894 this week

Mourning Becomes Electra (1947)

 -  Drama  -  19 November 1947 (USA)
6.5
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 6.5/10 from 583 users  
Reviews: 27 user | 8 critic

Eugene O'Neill's updated version of the Orestaia. In New England, after the American Civil War, a war-weary Agamem--er, Ezra Mannon comes home to his unhappy wife (Christine) and loving ... See full summary »

Director:

Writers:

, (play)
0Check in
0Share...

Editors' Spotlight

Sundance 2015

Watch our IMDb & AIV Sundance Studio Interviews with Keith Simanton

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 450 titles
created 02 Jan 2012
 
a list of 771 titles
created 04 Mar 2012
 
a list of 48 titles
created 07 Jul 2013
 
a list of 2528 titles
created 19 Nov 2013
 
a list of 33 titles
created 10 months ago
 

Related Items

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Mourning Becomes Electra (1947)

Mourning Becomes Electra (1947) on IMDb 6.5/10

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

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Mourning Becomes Electra.
Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 2 wins. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

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: Lewis Milestone
Stars: Barbara Stanwyck, Van Heflin, Lizabeth Scott
Mourning Becomes Electra (TV Mini-Series 1978)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  
Stars: Stellar Bennett, Roberts Blossom, Bruce Davison
The Juggler (1953)
Certificate: Passed Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Hans Muller is a Jewish refugee from Germany. Relocating to Israel after World War II, he can not overcome the psychological effects of the war. After attacking a policeman, Hans becomes a ... See full summary »

Director: Edward Dmytryk
Stars: Kirk Douglas, Milly Vitale, Paul Stewart
Champion (1949)
Drama | Film-Noir | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Boxer Midge Kelly rises to fame...mainly by stepping on other people.

Director: Mark Robson
Stars: Kirk Douglas, Arthur Kennedy, Marilyn Maxwell
Adventure | Romance | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A U.S. Marshall and two deputies rescue a cattle rustler from a lynch mob led by a local cattle baron convinced that the rustler also killed his son.

Director: Raoul Walsh
Stars: Kirk Douglas, Virginia Mayo, John Agar
Biography | Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A young trumpeter enjoys highs (musical success, fame, and fortune) and lows (sour marriage, death of his mentor, bout with alcoholism).

Director: Michael Curtiz
Stars: Kirk Douglas, Lauren Bacall, Doris Day
Drama | Fantasy | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

An anthology film consisting of three very different stories about love set in Europe and told in flashback.

Directors: Vincente Minnelli, Gottfried Reinhardt
Stars: Kirk Douglas, James Mason, Leslie Caron
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

The head of a large publishing empire is dismayed when a top army general is about to be appointed to an atomic energy committee. She's determined to discredit him prior to the appointment ... See full summary »

Director: H.C. Potter
Stars: Susan Hayward, Kirk Douglas, Paul Stewart
The Big Trees (1952)
Action | Romance | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

A Quaker colony tries to save the giant sequoias from a timber baron.

Director: Felix E. Feist
Stars: Kirk Douglas, Eve Miller, Patrice Wymore
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 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
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Sisters Ruth and Eileen Sherwood move from Ohio to New York in the hopes of building their careers. Ruth wants to get a job as a writer, while Eileen hopes to succeed on the stage. The two ... See full summary »

Director: Alexander Hall
Stars: Rosalind Russell, Brian Aherne, Janet Blair
Act of Love (1953)
Drama | War | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
Director: Anatole Litvak
Stars: Kirk Douglas, Dany Robin, Barbara Laage
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Katina Paxinou ...
...
...
Nancy Coleman ...
...
...
Thurston Hall ...
Walter Baldwin ...
Elisabeth Risdon ...
Erskine Sanford ...
Jimmy Conlin ...
Lee Baker ...
Edit

Storyline

Eugene O'Neill's updated version of the Orestaia. In New England, after the American Civil War, a war-weary Agamem--er, Ezra Mannon comes home to his unhappy wife (Christine) and loving daughter (Lavinia). But Lavinia's ex-suitor, Adam Brant, has become Christine's lover, and together Adam and Christine plot to poison Ezra. When they succeed, Lavinia turns to her brother Orin to help bring the lovers to justice, but when they succeed, Orin goes mad and his suicide note may come between Lavinia and her new suitor, Peter Niles. Written by Kathy Li

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

love | new england | lover | ship | poison | See All (133) »

Taglines:

The Most Sinister Triangle In Dramatic History! See more »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

19 November 1947 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Electra le sienta bien el luto  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (edited)

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The original Broadway production of "Mourning Becomes Electra" by Eugene O'Neill opened at the Guild Theater on October 26, 1931, ran for 150 performances and was revived in 1932 and 1972. See more »

Goofs

About 22 minutes into the film, Orin is standing by a bench where Lavinia is seated. He holds his hat by his side and he drops it....it just lies there on the dirt path as he sits down and he doesn't pick it up. See more »

Connections

Version of Trauer muß Elektra tragen (1970) See more »

Soundtracks

Shenandoah
Traditional sea chantey
Sung over credits and throughout film by unidentified male chorus
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
An Unjustly Forgotten Movie
9 October 1999 | by (Sheffield, England) – See all my reviews

It is difficult to understand why this film is SO rare and forgotten. I myself had to wait over 40 years to finally see it, when, one of our TV channels, realising what a rare and unusual film they had (!), screened it at 4:00 a.m. in the morning! Thank goodness for video!

It was such a commercial flop in Britain when first shown in 1947, that after a brief showcase screening in London, it sank without a trace and has remained a "lost" film ever since. Based on Eugene O'Neill's play, it is slightly flawed in places I must admit, but what is so staggeringly remarkable is that it ever got made in the first place!

Clocking in at almost three hours running time in the days when a 75 minute feature might induce ennui, and 95 minutes was a marathon, and so WORDY, and, in a climate just slowly emerging from WW2, so GLOOMY, one should not perhaps be surprised that it did flop commercially, but, seen now, one can realise just how very good it is. Perhaps RKO were motivated by, and mindful of the fact that O'Neill had then just recently been awarded the Nobel Prize for literature, but could they ever in their wildest dreams have imagined such a film would ever go into profit? Had they learned nothing from CITIZEN KANE five years earlier?

What was also remarkable however, considering when the film was made, was its frank and quite powerful depiction of the Oedipal/Electra complex. No doubt the American censors at the time felt they could be more than customarily lenient with a "classic" work, (as they indeed had been with GONE WITH THE WIND), and, no doubt, in 1947, Freud's teachings were still pretty much the esoteric, clinical knowledge of a small minority, so perhaps the censors of the day "read" these dark passions merely as melodrama, but the ensemble playing is so strong and competent that the film leaves you know doubt about just what forces are in play, even if most people at that time weren't perhaps universally aware of them.

Also, it so vividly confirms my long-held contention that any film is only ever as good as its script!!! What rare bliss it is nowadays to hear intelligent, thoughtful, meaningful dialogue! To witness characters riven by dark, deep passions of the heart and soul rather than by mere carnal lust Unfortunately, Rosalind Russell as Lavina wasn't too competent in the strong passion department, and regrettably was way out of her depth in her part, but Michael Redgrave (making his Hollywood debut) was a revelation, and his performance is one of the very best I have ever seen from him. But, in this particular work, all the acting parts are difficult, demanding swift changes of emotion, and the need to depict turbulent psychological undertows through body language. Vivien Leigh was probably the only screen actress from that era who could have done full justice to the role of Lavina.

Katina Paxinou undertakes her role as the unfaithful mother with flourish and conviction, and Raymond Massey as the father is, as always, reliable and sound, and even the incomparable Sarah Allgood makes an all too brief appearance. A very young Kirk Douglas acquits himself well, and although technically you can see the studio budget wasn't huge, the overall result is extremely satisfying, and illustrates well what a great debt the world owes to American playwrights of O'Neill's calibre, and too, to Hollywood for making them available to a world-wide audience.

It is a genuinely moving and powerful film, and it is a shame that it has become such a neglected and forgotten orphan. No doubt had it been made in France or Britain, it would now be hailed by movie snobs as a great Art Film, which it is, and just because it originated through the Hollywood studio system doesn't make it in the least bit less brilliant and dynamic. And whatever else, it is certainly one of the most LITERATE films ever made! Well worth searching for. Or, come to that, waiting 40 years for!


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

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Was Rosalind Russell Robbed? mattsmith89
Miscasting in MBE... d-letta-1
Most disfunctional family in film? boostercables_2000
Age Discrepancies jimbenben
Is the 173-minute version still around? robertshort_3
Shenandoah brianbasso1
Discuss Mourning Becomes Electra (1947) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page