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Don't Bother to Knock (1952)

Approved  |   |  Drama, Film-Noir, Thriller  |  August 1952 (USA)
6.9
Your rating:
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Ratings: 6.9/10 from 3,571 users  
Reviews: 59 user | 22 critic

An airline pilot, dumped by his girlfriend, pursues a baby-sitter in his hotel...and gradually realizes she's dangerous.

Director:

(as Roy Baker)

Writers:

(screenplay), (novel)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Jed Towers
...
...
Lyn Lesley
Donna Corcoran ...
Bunny Jones
Jeanne Cagney ...
Rochelle
...
Ruth Jones
...
Eddie Forbes
...
Peter Jones
...
Mrs. Ballew
...
Joe the Bartender (as Willis B. Bouchey)
...
Mr. Ballew
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Emmett Vogan ...
Toastmaster (unconfirmed)
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Storyline

Airline pilot Jed stays at the New York hotel where girlfriend Lyn is a singer. He sees Nell in a window opposite his and they get chummy. When the girl she's baby-sitting, Bunny, enters Nell goes crazy and sends her to her room. She fantasizes that Jed is her long lost fiance. Jed comes to realize that Nell is more than a little whacko. Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

You never met her type before... See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

August 1952 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Mischief  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In the novel on which the movie is based Nell's surname is 'Munro'. This was changed to Forbes when Marilyn Monroe was cast in the role. See more »

Goofs

When Lyn and Jed get photographed in the bar by the camera lady, she snaps only one picture of them. When she brings the novelty items (handkerchief, matchbook, ashtray, and postcard) to their booth minutes later, the handkerchief shows a slightly different pose than the others. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Mrs. Emma Ballew: After all, we guests who live here from year to year, we deserve a little consideration, too.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Skin on Skin (1983) See more »

Soundtracks

There's a Lull in My Life
(uncredited)
Music by Harry Revel
Lyrics by Mack Gordon
Performed by Anne Bancroft, later played by The Rounders
See more »

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User Reviews

 
An Itch To Scratch
1 August 2008 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

Don't Bother To Knock finds airline pilot Richard Widmark flying with more than the safety of his passengers on his mind to New York. He's on a mission to confront Anne Bancroft who's given him a 'let's call it a day' letter. Anne works as a singer in a posh New York nightclub attached to one of the fancier hotels. After a nasty scene with Bancroft, Widmark's left with an itch to scratch.

The answer might be Marilyn Monroe across the courtyard looking real provocative and arousing Widmark's interest. He gives her a call and things might be going good. Then the little girl, Donna Corcoran, wakes up from the next room and Marilyn starts to act very weird indeed.

This one was one of Marilyn's first roles which exploited a little more than her beauty. She plays a troubled young lady who's just spent some time in a mental institution. Her uncle Elisha Cook, Jr., got her that job as a babysitter for Corcoran whose parents Jim Backus and Jeanne Cagney are at a banquet in the hotel. Truth be told the role was no stretch for Marilyn given her own sad history.

Widmark's not a particularly noble character here, but he's a decent enough man. He's just like millions of other men who when they lose their love, cure it with trying to love what's available. Anne Bancroft makes a nice screen debut here although I can't believe she sung those songs herself. If so, why didn't she do any more singing on screen?

Though the film gets melodramatic and the characters don't give you any real rooting interest, Don't Bother To Knock remains a landmark film for the careers of both Marilyn Monroe and Anne Bancroft.


12 of 16 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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