72 user 45 critic

Born Yesterday (1950)

Approved | | Comedy, Drama, Romance | February 1951 (USA)
A tycoon hires a tutor to teach his lover proper etiquette.



(play), (screenplay)

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Won 1 Oscar. Another 3 wins & 10 nominations. See more awards »



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Complete credited cast:
Howard St. John ...
Frank Otto ...
Larry Oliver ...
Barbara Brown ...
Anna Hedges
Grandon Rhodes ...


Uncouth, loud-mouth junkyard tycoon Harry Brock descends upon Washington D.C. to buy himself a congressman or two, bringing with him his mistress, ex-showgirl Billie Dawn. Brock hires newspaperman Paul Verrall to see if he can soften her rough edges and make her more presentable in capital society. But Harry gets more than he bargained for as Billie absorbs Verall's lessons in U.S. history and not only comes to the realization that Harry is nothing but a two-bit, corrupt crook, but in the process also falls in love with her handsome tutor. Written by Paul Penna <tterrace@wco.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


A perfectly swell motion picture! See more »


Comedy | Drama | Romance


Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

February 1951 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Nacida ayer  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


To help build up Judy Holliday's image, particularly in the eyes of Columbia Pictures chief Harry Cohn, Katharine Hepburn deliberately leaked stories to the gossip columns suggesting that her performance in Adam's Rib (1949) was so good that it had stolen the spotlight from Hepburn and Spencer Tracy. This got Cohn's attention and Holliday won the part in Born Yesterday (1950). See more »


While visiting the Library of Congress in Washington, DC, Paul Verral explains to Billie Dawn that the country's whole government is based on "these three pieces of paper." In reality, the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights were written on vellum, or parchment, which is made of stretched and treated animal skin. See more »


Jim Devery: Anyway you've been engaged for seven years, I've never understood why you waited this long.
Harry Brock: I didn't wanna to be rushed. Look, this way I give her somethin', I'm a swell fella. We get married, she's got it coming, she thinks.
See more »


Version of Au théâtre ce soir: Ferraille à vendre (1972) See more »


Symphony No. 2 in D Major, Op. 36, 2nd movement
Music by Ludwig van Beethoven
Played at the outdoor concert
Also played on the phonograph
See more »

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User Reviews

A seemingly neglected, wonderful movie
9 July 2001 | by (not sure) – See all my reviews

A hidden gem (I say 'hidden' because as this comment is being written, there are only 400+ votes here in the ImDb for this movie) of a movie from 1950 is "Born Yesterday". Nominated for several Academy Awards and won Best Actress for Judy Holliday's performance of a "not-so-bright" fiancee of another "not-so-bright" but rich and powerful "junkman" played by Broderick Crawford. William Holden also shows another of his fittingly played performances as the newspaperman who teaches Judy Holliday's character the better things she's neglected to even try to learn. Another fine "Broadway Hit" that is preserved on film. Great acting and dialogue does enhance the quality of a movie and this proves it. It also tells a simple story of intelligence that should be heard once in a while. It is not perfect (probably as a result of because of the movie's age and contrast with modern society) but the imperfections could be ignored for it's truly wonderful feeling that reminds me of "Mr. Smith goes to Washington". A movie that should be seen by many politicians and anybody in power. It's just too bad that this movie came at the time of "Sunset Boulevard" and "All About Eve" because it seems to have been neglected as of late. Also, I would like to say to those who say Judy Holliday's performance isn't as deserving against Bette Davis' in All About Eve and Gloria Swanson's in Sunset Boulevard to figure out which one of the roles were the most difficult to play for each particular actress and in fact for any actress. I'm sure that Gloria Swanson's performance was difficult, but it was seemingly so close to her real life that it doesn't seem so difficult (Although that well known fact made 'Sunset Blvd' a greater Masterpiece). As for Bette Davis in 'All About Eve', it was also great but not very difficult for her (She never had a bad performance in her movie career).

Anyway, I recommend this movie to anybody who wants a meaningful movie for a change.

23 of 29 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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this is a COMEDY?? j_hughes2000
Wow! How have I never seen this before stevengc
Ju-dy, Ju-dy, Ju-dy!! She Deserved That Oscar csu16387
Bill Holden is hot with those glasses ladylavende
Broderick Crawford niquems
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