6.8/10
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52 user 30 critic

The Boy with Green Hair (1948)

Approved | | Comedy, Drama, Family | 27 December 1948 (USA)
This parable looks at public reaction when the hair of an American war orphan mysteriously turns green.

Director:

Writers:

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

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Dr. Evans
...
Miss Brand
...
'The Boy' / Peter
Richard Lyon ...
Michael
...
The King
...
Dr. Knudson
...
Mr. Davis
Charles Meredith ...
Mr. Piper
...
Barber
Billy Sheffield ...
Red
...
Danny (as John Calkins)
Teddy Infuhr ...
Timmy
...
Joey
...
Peggy
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Storyline

Peter Frye, typical American boy, is orphaned when his parents are caught in the London Blitz. He is not told of their fate, but shuttled from one selfish relative to the next, ending with "Gramp," a kindly ex-vaudevillean. Peter and Gramp, both fond of "Irish bulls," get along fine; but the morning after Peter finally learns he's an orphan, his hair spontaneously turns green! The absurd over-reactions of stupid people overturn his life as the story becomes a parable. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Please don't tell why his hair turned green!

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Family

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

27 December 1948 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Der Junge mit den grünen Haaren  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Unfortunately for the film's director, Joseph Losey, the eccentric, politically conservative Howard Hughes took over RKO while this film was being shot and, hating the film's pacifist message, did his best to sabotage it. Losey, however, managed to protect the integrity of his project. Screenwriter Ben Barzman, who was also later blacklisted along with Losey, would later recall that "Joe shot the picture in such a way that there wasn't much possibility for change. A few lines were stuck in here and there to soften the message, but that was about it". Barzman also remembered that 12-year-old Dean Stockwell was called into Hughes' office and Hughes told him that when the other children spoke of the horror of war, he should say, "And that's why America has gotta have the biggest army, and the biggest navy, and the biggest air force in the world!" According to Barzman, little Stockwell was so in sympathy with the film's message that he dared to respond, "No, sir!" Even after Hughes started to scream at him, the boy held his ground and refused to do it. See more »

Goofs

When the barber is preparing to cut his hair, a close-up shot shows a chunk of cut hair on his right side. Then when the barber begins cutting, it's not there. But re-appears for the next close-up of him crying. See more »

Quotes

Peter Fry: I want my hair back the way it was!
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Connections

Referenced in Moulin Rouge! (2001) See more »

Soundtracks

Tread on the Tail of Me Coat
(uncredited)
Folk song
Sung by Pat O'Brien and Walter Catlett
See more »

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User Reviews

An Enduring Message
23 February 2000 | by (Maryland) – See all my reviews

It's been years since I last saw this film, but it stays with me. I was an adolescent in the early 60's when I first saw The Boy With Green Hair on a local television station in southern California. It was one of those stations that has a playlist of movies which they repeat at intervals. I must have watched this film a dozen or more times, and each time I so completely identified with the character played by Dean Stockwell (even though I was a girl and had very brown hair). I'm sure it had something to do with my age, the times I was living in, and the fact that I was a bit different from the "popular" kids. I have looked for a video copy of this movie for years and finally discovered that the producer/owner of the movie pulled all rights for reproducing it because of some dispute, I can't remember now what it was about. At any rate, it is a real shame. I would certainly like to share this treasure with some young friends of mine. I think its message would come through, despite the years.


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