MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Up 2,385 this week

Knock on Any Door (1949)

6.9
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 6.9/10 from 2,025 users  
Reviews: 42 user | 14 critic

Andrew Morton is an attorney who made it out of the slums. Nick Romano is his client, a young man with a long string of crimes behind him. After he lost his paycheck gambling, hoping to buy... See full summary »

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
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 26 titles
created 15 Mar 2011
 
a list of 31 titles
created 26 Aug 2011
 
a list of 23 titles
created 27 Nov 2011
 
a list of 45 titles
created 27 Dec 2012
 
a list of 37 titles
created 27 Nov 2013
 

Related Items

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Knock on Any Door (1949)

Knock on Any Door (1949) on IMDb 6.9/10

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

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Knock on Any Door.
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

Glen, Hal and Sam are three escaped convicts who move in on and terrorize a suburban household.

Director: William Wyler
Stars: Humphrey Bogart, Fredric March, Arthur Kennedy
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

After local grocery clerk rescues a baby from an escaped lion, a circus owner builds him into an attraction but balks when he falls in love with his sister.

Director: Ray Enright
Stars: Humphrey Bogart, Sylvia Sidney, Eddie Albert
Action | Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Runyonesque Broadway gamblers turn patriotic when they stumble onto a cell of Nazi saboteurs.

Director: Vincent Sherman
Stars: Humphrey Bogart, Conrad Veidt, Kaaren Verne
Action | Adventure | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

On their way to Africa are a group of rogues who hope to get rich there, and a seemingly innocent British couple. They meet and things happen...

Director: John Huston
Stars: Humphrey Bogart, Jennifer Jones, Gina Lollobrigida
Drama | Adventure | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Five patriotic convicts are helped to escape imprisonment in Devil's Island so they can fight for occupied Free French forces against the Nazis.

Director: Michael Curtiz
Stars: Humphrey Bogart, Claude Rains, Michèle Morgan
Comedy | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

When retired racket boss John Sarto tries to reclaim his place and former friends try to kill him, he finds solace in a monastery and reinvents himself as a pious monk.

Director: Lloyd Bacon
Stars: Edward G. Robinson, Humphrey Bogart, Ann Sothern
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Two brothers struggle as wildcat truck drivers; one comes to harm, the other is accused of his friend's murder.

Director: Raoul Walsh
Stars: George Raft, Humphrey Bogart, Ann Sheridan
Hot Blood (1956)
Drama | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

Stephen Torino (Wilde), who is tricked by his brother Marco (Adler) into an arranged marriage with tempestuous Annie Caldash (Russell). Annie is willing to give the union a go, but Torino wants none of it.

Director: Nicholas Ray
Stars: Jane Russell, Cornel Wilde, Luther Adler
Run for Cover (1955)
Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Odd little Western that gets off to a snappy start when a man (Matt Dow) is mistaken as a train robber. After the town's sheriff shoots the kid he's riding with, Dow clears his name and ... See full summary »

Director: Nicholas Ray
Stars: James Cagney, Viveca Lindfors, John Derek
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

Millionaire Turner, on his deathbed, leaves a million to Jane Barker. A movie addict who believes life is like the movies, marries Donn without telling him about the bequest. Turner gets ... See full summary »

Director: Frederick De Cordova
Stars: Robert Hutton, Joyce Reynolds, Cecil Kellaway
Adventure | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

An ornithologist battles a family of bird poachers in the Florida Everglades.

Directors: Nicholas Ray, Budd Schulberg
Stars: Burl Ives, Christopher Plummer, Chana Eden
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

In this sequel to "Knock On Any Door", the residents of a Chicago tenement building band together to insure that the son of Nick Romano does not follow in his father's footsteps...to the electric chair.

Director: Philip Leacock
Stars: Burl Ives, Shelley Winters, James Darren
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
Allene Roberts ...
Candy Toxton ...
Adele Morton (as Susan Perry)
Mickey Knox ...
Barry Kelley ...
Edit

Storyline

Andrew Morton is an attorney who made it out of the slums. Nick Romano is his client, a young man with a long string of crimes behind him. After he lost his paycheck gambling, hoping to buy his wife some jewelry, she announced she was pregnant, Later he finds her dead from suicide. When he turns again to robbery he's caught by a cop and Nick pumps all his bullets into him in frustration. Morton's appeal to the court emphasizes the evils of the slums. Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Film-Noir

Certificate:

See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

22 February 1949 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Vor verschlossenen Türen  »

Box Office

Budget:

$900,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The book by Willard Motley was a best seller. It was serialized in the William Randolph Hearst newspapers and abridged versions appeared in Look Magazine and Omnibook (a Reader's Digest-type of magazine of the day). See more »

Goofs

In Mortons' office, after Ed stands up and leaves, Morton's right hand is on the desk. In the next shot his right hand is high over the desk. See more »

Quotes

Nick Romano: You want to do something for me? Remember me in your prayers.
See more »

Crazy Credits

"And introducing John Derek as Nick Romano" See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Monkees: Don't Look a Gift Horse in the Mouth (1966) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Better As a Romance Than a Crime Drama
1 July 2006 | by (Kentucky) – See all my reviews

"Knock on Any Door" (Columbia 1949), a combination courtroom drama and delinquent youth social statement, was Nicholas Ray's directorial debut. Humphrey Bogart plays lawyer Andrew Morton, one time street tough turned idealistic lawyer. Bogart's independent production company made the film shortly after he broke away from Warner Brothers. Bogart's part was originally intended for Marlon Brando, but Brando withdrew after the death of producer Mark Hellinger.

On the verge of becoming a partner in his big-time law firm, Morton is yanked out of his ivory tower and into the past by the need to defend accused murderer Pretty Boy Romano (John Derek), who he attempted to help when Romano was a petty teenage criminal. This is told in flashbacks with Romano repeating his credo: "live fast, die young, and have a good looking corpse". Probably the first film use of what has become a very tired expression. Morton carries a lot of guilty baggage into the trial. He blames himself for the imprisonment of Romano's father, an event that plunged the family into poverty and led to Romano's life of crime. Through the years he had tried to help Romano who had married a nice girl and attempted to go straight. But setbacks at work returned Romano to crime. Then his pregnant wife's suicide unhinged him and he killed a cop.

The "Knock on Any Door" expression refers to Morton's plea for leniency during the trial, as he blames the conditions in the slums and the affects of poverty for Romano's actions. Stating that behind any door are young men whose lives will be wasted unless they receive guidance and are assisted in becoming productive citizens.

"Knock on Any Door" provides a nice example of the unpredictability inherit in the film making business. A look at screenplay and cast would lead you to expect the film's strengths to be the Bogart-Derek scenes and the courtroom drama, with the romantic background story (told in flashbacks) a glaring weakness.

But the trial scenes which take up a substantial part of the film suffer from the usual procedural inaccuracies and are not particularly effective dramatically. Bogart pretty much plays his Captain Queeg character ("The Caine Mutiny") and spends more time whining than defending. The Bogart-Derek scenes are nothing special and there is no chemistry between the two actors. The narrative actually contradicts the theme of outrage over social inequities. The simplistic conclusions about social justice ring hollow and any sympathetic feelings toward Romano seem misplaced.

The production design is great. When combined with the haunting the black & white photography it makes for one of the best looking examples of the film noir genre.

What ultimately saves the film and actually makes it rather special is the romance between Romano and Emma (Allene Roberts). This unlikely character pairing (imagine James Dean's "Rebel" having a serious relationship with Melanie from "Gone With the Wind") somehow works as Roberts and Derek have a real chemistry together. And she introduces intangibles that are missing from the rest of the production. In addition, the relationship itself introduces a nice irony as it is the pressure to make Emma proud of him and to tangibly demonstrate his love that ultimately leads Romano back to crime.

Then again, what do I know? I'm only a child.


13 of 19 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Bogart as lawyer? ahil
One of the best Bogart movies LittleRascalRicky
Been to any good BURLAP PARTIES lately? oceanchick
UK DVD coming in November! mr-dan-hunter
Hard done by.. really? rayincumbria
Discuss Knock on Any Door (1949) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page