7.1/10
4,711
57 user 18 critic

The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (1947)

Approved | | Comedy, Fantasy, Romance | 1 September 1947 (USA)
A clumsy daydreamer gets caught up in a sinister conspiracy.

Director:

Writers:

(screen play), (screen play) | 1 more credit »
Reviews

On Disc

at Amazon

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Certificate: Passed Comedy | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Shy milkman Burleigh Sullivan accidentally knocks out drunken Speed McFarlane, a champion boxer who was flirting with Burleigh's sister. The newspapers get hold of the story and ... See full summary »

Director: Norman Z. McLeod
Stars: Danny Kaye, Virginia Mayo, Vera-Ellen
Wonder Man (1945)
Comedy | Fantasy | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

After being murdered by gangsters, an exuberant nightclub entertainer returns as a ghost to persuade his meek twin brother to help bring his killers to justice.

Director: H. Bruce Humberstone
Stars: Danny Kaye, Virginia Mayo, Vera-Ellen
Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A town's corrupt officials think a fool is actually an investigator in disguise.

Director: Henry Koster
Stars: Danny Kaye, Walter Slezak, Barbara Bates
Adventure | Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

When his job along with that of his co-worker are threatened, Walter takes action in the real world embarking on a global journey that turns into an adventure more extraordinary than anything he could have ever imagined.

Director: Ben Stiller
Stars: Ben Stiller, Kristen Wiig, Jon Daly
Adventure | Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Princess Margaret is travelling incognito to elope with her true love instead of marrying the man her father has betrothed her to. On the high seas, her ship is attacked by pirates who know... See full summary »

Directors: David Butler, Sidney Lanfield
Stars: Bob Hope, Virginia Mayo, Walter Brennan
Up in Arms (1944)
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Hypochondriac Danny Weems gets drafted into the army and makes life miserable for his fellow GIs. He's also lovesick when it comes to pretty Mary Morgan, unaware that she's in love with his... See full summary »

Director: Elliott Nugent
Stars: Danny Kaye, Dana Andrews, Dinah Shore
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
Mrs. Eunice Mitty
...
Gertrude Griswold
...
Bruce Pierce
...
Tubby Wadsworth
...
Mrs. Irma Griswold
Konstantin Shayne ...
Peter van Hoorn
...
Colonel
...
Hendrick
Doris Lloyd ...
Mrs. Leticia Follinsbee
...
Anatole
...
Karl Maasdam
Milton Parsons ...
Butler Tyler
Edit

Storyline

In New York the clumsy Walter Mitty is the publisher of pulp fiction at the Pierce Publishing house owned by Bruce Pierce. He lives with his overbearing mother and neither his fiancée Gertrude Griswold and her mother nor his best friend Tubby Wadsworth respects him. Walter is an escapist and daydreams into a world of fantasy many times along the day. When Walter is commuting, he stumbles in the train with the gorgeous Rosalind van Hoorn who uses Walter to escape from her pursuer. Walter unintentionally gets involved with a dangerous ring of spies that are seeking a black book with notes about a hidden treasure. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

| |

Release Date:

1 September 1947 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Das Doppelleben des Herrn Mitty  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Author James Thurber acknowledged that the character Walter Mitty was based on his friend, writer Robert Benchley. Thurber said that he got the idea for Mitty from the character created by Benchley in a series of shorts that he made for Fox and MGM, respectively, in the 1920s and 1930s. Thurber is also on record as saying that he hated this film and that Danny Kaye's interpretation of Mitty is nothing at all like he intended the character to be. See more »

Goofs

When Mitty exits the office having just knocked over the water cooler, the glass in the door breaks. Just prior to it breaking you can see large scratches where the glass had been prepared for breaking. See more »

Quotes

Walter Mitty: [singing while daydreaming that he's Anatole of Paris] And why do I sew each new chapeau with a style they must look positively grim in?/Strictly between us, entrez-nous, I hate women.
[giggles]
See more »

Connections

Referenced in L'âge des ténèbres (2007) See more »

Soundtracks

The Words and Music for
"Anatole of Paris"
by Sylvia Fine
Performed by Danny Kaye (uncredited)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Amusing farce
13 January 2005 | by (Deming, New Mexico, USA) – See all my reviews

Whatever the setting, and there were many, Danny Kaye always played himself -- the hypochondriacal, stuttering, cowardly, nervously fiddling neurotic. That's pretty much what he is here, and if you haven't seen a Danny Kaye movie this is a pretty funny introduction.

The plot violates James Thurber's short story, the point of which was that Walter Mitty daydreamed so much because his own life was so dull. It's probably Thurber's most popular story, although "If Grant Had Been Drinking at Appomatox" has more outright laughs. Here Kaye is involved in one richly comic episode after another.

The famous fantasies are pretty much gotten out of the way before the movie is half over. The "real" scenes are at least as amusing. He's a copy editor at a pulp magazine in New York and Boris Karloff, he of the ominous lisp, is pitching him a story about a doctor who murders people without leaving a trace by pressing on a nerve at the base of the skull. "Oh, we've already used that in 'The Revenge of the Gland Specialist'," objects Kaye.

The plot is a mystery about the planned theft of the Dutch Crown Jewels. Something to do with a murder Kaye witnesses (nobody believes him), a black book, Kaye singing silly songs, a chief conspirator nicknamed "the Boot," and a dazzling innocent blond -- Virginia Mayo -- who has a pretty sassy figure.

Watching her and Kaye talking about corsets reminded me that when I was a teen, all women seemed to be wrapped up in inexplicable buckles, plastic straps, and clips that only a deranged mechanical engineer could design. Come to think of it, I'm still out of it. I don't know whether women leave body gel on or wash it off, or what bath beads are. And when did "lipstick" turn into "lip rouge," and "rouge" turn into "blush," and "mascara" into "kohl" -- or DID it? Somebody is pulling the wool over somebody's eyes around here.

You ought to see this if only for the costume design and hair styles. Wow -- what exotica! It's impossible to believe that women ever dressed like this, or hoped to, despite Fritz Feld's glutinous paean to a hat that, although it looks like something Calder might have dreamed up during a horrible hangover, can be disassembled into three -- count 'em -- three separate parts and then be piece together into yet another arrangement. Put a tiny quail under that feathery apparatus and you're talking a two-hundred dollar entree at a four-star Parisian restaurant.

There's a likable element of running gags in here too. On three occasions Kaye's blustery boss is holding important business meetings when Kaye enters unexpectedly -- once simply late, and twice more crawling backward in through the tenth floor window pursued by pigeons.

Kaye's decline was sad. He wound up singing "Thumbelina" to a nearly empty night club in later years. But he's at his peak here, and his peak was pretty good.


32 of 38 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?