8.0/10
46,884
215 user 71 critic

Harvey (1950)

Not Rated | | Comedy, Drama, Fantasy | 21 December 1950 (USA)
Due to his insistence that he has an invisible six foot-tall rabbit for a best friend, a whimsical middle-aged man is thought by his family to be insane - but he may be wiser than anyone knows.

Director:

Writers:

(from the Pulitzer Prize Play by), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
Reviews

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

ON DISC
Won 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 4 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Harvey (TV Movie 1972)
Comedy | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

Elwood P. Dowd's constant companion is Harvey, a six-foot tall invisible rabbit. To his sister, his obsession with Harvey has been a thorn in her plans to marry off her daughter. However, ... See full summary »

Director: Fielder Cook
Stars: James Stewart, John McGiver, Marian Hailey
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

When a rich woman's ex-husband and a tabloid-type reporter turn up just before her planned remarriage, she begins to learn the truth about herself.

Director: George Cukor
Stars: Cary Grant, Katharine Hepburn, James Stewart
Comedy | Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

A drama critic learns on his wedding day that his beloved maiden aunts are homicidal maniacs, and that insanity runs in his family.

Director: Frank Capra
Stars: Cary Grant, Priscilla Lane, Raymond Massey
Crime | Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

In a murder trial, the defendant says he suffered temporary insanity after the victim raped his wife. What is the truth, and will he win his case?

Director: Otto Preminger
Stars: James Stewart, Lee Remick, Ben Gazzara
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
William H. Lynn ...
Judge Gaffney (as William Lynn)
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
Grayce Mills ...
Mrs. Ethel Chauvenet (as Grace Mills)
...
Harvey ...
Himself
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
...
Eccentric Man (scenes deleted)
...
Undetermined Secondary Role (scenes deleted)
Edit

Storyline

The classic stage hit gets the Hollywood treatment in the story of Elwood P. Dowd who makes friends with a spirit taking the form of a human-sized rabbit named Harvey that only he sees (and a few privileged others on occasion also.) After his sister tries to commit him to a mental institution, a comedy of errors ensues. Elwood and Harvey become the catalysts for a family mending its wounds and for romance blossoming in unexpected places. Written by Dale Roloff

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The Wonderful Pulitzer Prize Play... becomes one of the Great Motion Pictures of our Time!

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Fantasy

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

| |

Release Date:

21 December 1950 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Mein Freund Harvey  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (DVD)

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)| (Dolby 5.1)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Mary Chase wanted the audience to see Harvey walking with Elwood at the fadeout, because she did not "want anybody to go out of the theater thinking Elwood is just a lush. He believes in Harvey...and I think the audience ought to believe in Harvey, too." See more »

Goofs

In the daytime scenes at Chumley's Rest, shadows are seen of the actors and props that clearly go against the dominant natural light. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Elwood P. Dowd: Is this 348?
Mailman: Yes, it is.
Elwood P. Dowd: I gotta special delivery here.
Mailman: Oh, that sounds interesting.
Elwood P. Dowd: It's for Dowd.
Mailman: Dowd. Dowd's my name. Elwood P. Let me give you one of my cards.
Elwood P. Dowd: That won't be necessary sir. Just, eh, sign right here. Beautiful day.
Mailman: Oh, every day's a beautiful day.
See more »

Crazy Credits

At the very end Harvey opens a door and the words at the bottom of the screen say "Harvey as Himself." See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Simpsons: My Big Fat Geek Wedding (2004) See more »

Soundtracks

Waltz No. 1 in D-Flat Major, Op. 64, Minute Waltz
(uncredited)
Music by Frédéric Chopin
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
"I recommend pleasant, you may quote me"
2 December 2005 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

James Stewart became so identified with the role of Elwood P. Dowd in Harvey that few today are aware that he did not introduce the part. It was originally done on Broadway by Frank Fay. Whereas Stewart emphasized the whimsical in Dowd, Fay purportedly leaned towards the alcoholic of which he had enough personal experience.

Fay left the play and Stewart was brought in and it literally rejuvenated the play. I'm sure it helped to have a big movie name go on Broadway to help sales, but when word of mouth and the rave reviews of the critics got out, the play turned from a hit to a classic.

Only two players from the original Broadway cast made it to the big screen version, Josephine Hull as Elvetia Simmons, Stewart's sister and Jesse White as Wilson the attendant from the mental sanitarium with the 'dynamic personality'. Jesse White was in Hollywood to stay after that and entertained us for decades.

Josephine Hull got to do two of her stage roles for the screen, this one and one of the Brewster sisters in Arsenic and Old Lace. Diametrically opposite parts too. She's a crazy Brewster who poisons lonely old men in one film. And in the other she's the normal sister with an eccentric brother who sees and talks to a six foot white rabbit. Is she losing her marbles also? Well she does confess that at times Elwood makes Harvey so real to her that she's seen him herself.

But it's a big burden on Ms. Hull having Stewart around. She's a widow with a young daughter. Victoria Horne, who she'd like to get into society and meet some eligible and propertied young men. Not likely to happen if she has a crazy uncle around. It's time to take Elwood off to the Mental Institution for a little reality shock.

Of course in his own way and with each of them differently Stewart deceptively works his charm on the staff. He intrigues Cecil Kellaway the head of the institution, he baffles Charles Drake another psychiatrist, and he totally charms Nurse Peggy Dow.

After a while you start to wonder just who is the crazy one in this film. But then again that's what author Mary Chase was trying to convey. Stewart even brings Jesse White somewhat around, no easy task as you will find out in viewing the film.

Stewart revived Harvey in the early seventies with Helen Hayes playing his sister. The revival was a great success. In the post sixties age of the hippies, Stewart was the original drop out from society. And he did it without any cannabis or other narcotic.

Of course it's nice to be somewhat financially secure to be able to do this. We'd all like to though and that is the secret of Harvey's enduring appeal.


40 of 54 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?