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A Streetcar Named Desire (1951)

PG  |   |  Drama  |  1 December 1951 (West Germany)
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Ratings: 8.1/10 from 72,918 users  
Reviews: 227 user | 101 critic

Disturbed Blanche DuBois moves in with her sister in New Orleans and is tormented by her brutish brother-in-law while her reality crumbles around her.



(screen play), (adaptation), 1 more credit »
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Won 4 Oscars. Another 14 wins & 14 nominations. See more awards »



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Complete credited cast:
Rudy Bond ...
Nick Dennis ...
Peg Hillias ...
Wright King ...
A Collector
Richard Garrick ...
A Doctor
Ann Dere ...
Edna Thomas ...
The Mexican Woman
Mickey Kuhn ...


Blanche is in real need of a protector at this stage in her life when circumstances lead her into paying a visit to her younger sister Stella in New Orleans. She doesn't understand how Stella, who is expecting her first child, could have picked a husband so lacking in refinement. Stanley Kowalski's buddies come over to the house to play cards and one of them, Mitch, finds Blanche attractive until Stanley tells him about what kind of a woman Blanche really is. What will happen when Stella goes to the hospital to have her baby and just Blanche and her brother-in-law are in the house? Written by Dale O'Connor <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


THE PULITZER PRIZE PLAY of New Orleans' Latin Quarter...of a Lonely Girl...of Emotions Gone Savage! See more »



Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for thematic elements | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

1 December 1951 (West Germany)  »

Also Known As:

Un tranvía llamado deseo  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$1,800,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (re-release)

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Elia Kazan originally resisted the idea of directing the film adaptation as he felt that he had achieved everything he wanted with the stage version. It was only after Tennessee Williams implored him to take on the assignment that Kazan signed on. See more »


During the conversation about the Napoleonic Code between Stella and Stanley, the plate Stanley has been eating off of disappears off of the top of the trunk, which is suddenly open. See more »


[first lines]
A Sailor: Can I help you, ma'am?
Blanche DuBois: Why, they told me to take a streetcar named Desire and then transfer to one called Cemetery and ride six blocks and get off at Elysian Fields.
See more »


Referenced in Hollywood Homicide (2003) See more »


It's Only a Paper Moon
(1933) (uncredited)
Music by Harold Arlen
Lyrics by E.Y. Harburg and Billy Rose
Sung by Vivien Leigh while doing her hair
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

"Classical" vs. "Method"
27 March 2003 | by (Cleveland, Ohio) – See all my reviews

Now that this filmization of "Streetcar" is over a half century old, it can be looked at in a more objective manner than that of the early fifties. The "classical/traditional" acting style of Vivien Leigh, which was placed in stark contrast to the rest of the production personnel, continues to hold its own brilliantly.

It's probably hard today for some to imagine the strong opposition Leigh's casting faced back in 1950, when this prim actress from England was chosen (mostly by studio chief Jack Warner) over "method" Broadway actress Jessica Tandy.

A goodly number of cast and production people from the hit play directed by Elia Kazan were engaged by the director for the film version, and they were not at all enthusiastic about risking a "clash" of acting styles in the leading, pivotal role of Blanche. Kazan himself was reportedly very pro-Tandy, and quite disappointed in the studio's decision.

Yet, Warner and his staff felt Tandy wasn't that well known to the general movie going public--especially in contrast to Leigh, whose marquee name was by then almost magical. In recent interviews, Kazan admitted that working with Vivien was "a real challenge."

In looking at the film today, however, it's Leigh who emerges as a genuine "star" of this production. True, her facial expressions, vocal inflections and body gestures may be the result of careful, deliberate planning, but so what? It's also the aspect that commands attention and draws the viewer to her portion of the screen throughout this film.

Her southern accent, so well learned and retained from her work as Scarlett in "GWTW," is convincing and very beautiful to hear. It also fits Blanche perfectly, as does Leigh's stylized "choreography," which was undoubtedly retained from her long-running London stage performance.

Not all the combined, formidable talents of "method" giants as Karl Malden, Kim Hunter, Marlon Brando or Kazan can diminish the hypnotic work of Leigh here. It may not have excited "Gadge" Kazan, but it remains a highlight performance in film history (and impressed the Academy enough to bestow an "Oscar" to Vivien.)

It also didn't hurt to have Alex North's pungent score, which remains this composer's finest hour.

59 of 93 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Any significance of the baby being born on Blanche's birthday? DelovelyX
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