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Perfect Strangers (1950)

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Ginger Rogers and Dennis Morgan, serving on a sequestered jury during a murder trial, fall in love. She is divorced, he is married.

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Theresa (Terry) Scott
Dennis Morgan ...
David Campbell
...
Lena Fassler
Margalo Gillmore ...
Isobel Bradford
Anthony Ross ...
Robert (Bob) Fisher
...
Arthur Timkin
...
Harry Patullo
...
Judge James Byron
Harry Bellaver ...
Gabor Simkiewicz, Bailiff
George Chandler ...
Lester Hubley
Frank Conlan ...
John Brokaw (as Frank Conlin)
Charles Meredith ...
Lyle Pettijohn
Marjorie Bennett ...
Mrs. Moore
Edith Evanson ...
Mary Travers
Sumner Getchell ...
John Simon
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Storyline

Ginger Rogers and Dennis Morgan, serving on a sequestered jury during a murder trial, fall in love. She is divorced, he is married.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

based on play

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

17 August 1951 (Finland)  »

Also Known As:

Intermezzo matrimoniale  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Goofs

During the reenactment of the crime, the female officer is standing by the edge of the cliff. The prosecutor then steps to her side. In the next shot, the officer is standing alone again. See more »

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User Reviews

 
12 perfect strangers must survive living together while serving on a jury
31 July 2010 | by (Upstate New York) – See all my reviews

The half-hearted romance plot between Ginger Rogers and Dennis Morgan takes away from an otherwise interesting ensemble piece about different people living together and the American jury system.

PERFECT STRANGERS is about a jury for a murder trial. In order to protect the integrity of the jury, the judge arranges for the twelve jurors to be held up in a hotel, cut-off from all outside contact, for the duration of the trial.

The film, based on a play co-written by Ben Hecht and Charles MacArthur, provides an interesting look at the life cycle of a jury, from the initial summons to the juror selection process to the trial and final deliberations. Like 12 ANGRY MEN (1957) it shows how jurors see things in different ways and how personal prejudice gets in the way of fair and balanced decision making. The movie also gives a humorous peek into the press room, where newspaper reporters scrape around for the scoop of the day (territory previously explored in THE FRONT PAGE and HIS GIRL_FRIDAY, also based on a Hecht/MacArthur play).

The movie doesn't delve very deeply into the courtroom proceedings or the facts of the murder case. The focus is instead on the jurors, twelve perfect strangers sharing a common experience over several weeks. The ensemble cast includes multiple Oscar-nominee Thelma Ritter and Alan Reed (the voice of Fred Flintstone), as well as Ginger Rogers, Dennis Morgan, and others.

My favorite thing about the movie is seeing twelve perfect strangers from all walks of life forced to live together in a hotel suite. It's like going to camp. There are two women to a room, but the men have to double up (four to a room). They pass the time by playing cards, arguing about the trial, and (in Ginger's case) falling in love. They eat dinner together, they write messages for their loved ones at home, and they are chaperoned at all times by the bailiff.

I liked the idea of a sequestered jury ensemble, but the film puts too much emphasis on the romance arc between the Rogers and Morgan characters (a divorcée and a married man, respectively). And the romance is the weakest part. (Sure, they're both good-looking and trapped on a jury together, but can their "love" really work out?) The film has its moments, but falls short of its potential. It's still a classic "jury movie" and is worth checking out for Thelma Ritter fans and Ginger Rogers completists.


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