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Beware, My Lovely (1952)

Approved  |   |  Crime, Drama, Film-Noir  |  7 August 1952 (USA)
6.6
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Ratings: 6.6/10 from 1,025 users  
Reviews: 32 user | 6 critic

A psychopath takes a job as a handyman at the house of a lonely widow.

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Writers:

(screenplay), (story), 1 more credit »
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Title: Beware, My Lovely (1952)

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Mrs. Helen Gordon
...
Taylor Holmes ...
Mr. Walter Armstrong
Barbara Whiting ...
Ruth Williams
James Willmas ...
Mr. Stevens
O.Z. Whitehead ...
Mr. Franks
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Storyline

Helen Gordon hires Howard Wilton as a handyman to do chores around her house. She doesn't know what she's let herself in for. Insecure and paranoid, Wilton thinks everyone, including Helen, is against him. He suffers from memory lapses and extreme mood swings. She's soon a prisoner in her own house after Wilton locks the doors and tears out the telephone. His mood swings from violence to complacency but after Helen gets a message to the police via a telephone repairman, she finds he is still in the house. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Trapped by a man beyond control!

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Film-Noir

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

7 August 1952 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Day Without End  »

Filming Locations:


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?

Trivia

The head of RKO Pictures, Howard Hughes, withheld the film from release for a year. Robert Ryan felt Hughes tried to 'bury' the film because Ryan was publicly active in left-wing politics. See more »

Goofs

When Ida Lupino awakens after her fight with Robert Ryan the curtains on the window at the foot of the bed can be seen moving in the breeze, even though the window is obviously closed. See more »

Connections

Version of Suspense: Goodbye New York (1949) See more »

Soundtracks

Deck the Halls
(uncredited)
Traditional Christmas carol
The neighborhood children are singing the song in Helen's parlor
See more »

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User Reviews

 
The Man, The Play & The Actor.
5 November 2009 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

We are in a small town, a homely widow (Ida Lupino) hires a handyman (Robert Ryan) to look after her house. She soon starts to regret it as Ryan grows erratic by the hour, it appears that she is host to a dangerous schizophrenic, and now she is unable to escape her house.

Beware, My Lovely is adapted from Mel Dinelli's {The Spiral Staircase} story and play called "The Man". Pretty much a one set movie and a two character driven piece, the film boasts two great central performances and offers up an interesting take on mental illness. One however shouldn't be fooled into thinking this is a violent and nerve shredding picture, because it isn't. It's clear from the get go that Ryan's Howard Wilton is a dangerously troubled man, but this is a different sort of "peril" movie. One that throws up another slant on psychosis and thus makes it difficult to hate our dangerous protagonist.

Ryan and Lupino are a great combination, they had also done the excellent, and far better, On Dangerous Ground this same year. So with both actors clearly comfortable together, it brings out a finely tuned character story all based in the confines of one house, re: prison. Ryan is particularly strong as his character flits in and out of madness, with some scenes powerful and at times inducing fear and at others garnering deep sympathy. The direction from Harry Horner is safe {he in truth doesn't have to do much other than let his actors run with it} and George E. Diskant's cinematography contains some smart and impacting visual touches. With one involving Christmas tree baubles immensely memorable. Falling some where in between being average and great, Beware, My Lovely has enough about it to make it a recommendation to fans of borderline and easy to follow Film-Noir. For fans of Robert Ryan tho, it's something of an essential viewing, oh yes, and then some. 7/10


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