MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Up 244 this week

The Trouble with Harry (1955)

7.2
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.2/10 from 19,730 users  
Reviews: 137 user | 70 critic

The trouble with Harry is that he's dead, and everyone seems to have a different idea of what needs to be done with his body...

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (based on the novel by)
0Check in
0Share...

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 24 titles
created 06 Jul 2011
 
a list of 37 titles
created 13 Jul 2011
 
a list of 30 titles
created 03 Dec 2011
 
a list of 37 titles
created 15 Jan 2012
 
a list of 30 titles
created 01 Feb 2012
 

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: The Trouble with Harry (1955)

The Trouble with Harry (1955) on IMDb 7.2/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of The Trouble with Harry.

User Polls

Nominated for 2 BAFTA Film Awards. Another 2 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Torn Curtain (1966)
Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

An American scientist publicly defects to East Germany as part of a cloak and dagger mission to find the solution for a formula resin and then figuring out a plan to escape back to the West.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: Paul Newman, Julie Andrews, Lila Kedrova
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

While traveling in continental Europe, a rich young playgirl realizes that an elderly lady seems to have disappeared from the train.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: Margaret Lockwood, Michael Redgrave, Paul Lukas
The 39 Steps (1935)
Comedy | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

A man in London tries to help a counterespionage agent. But when the agent is killed and the man stands accused, he must go on the run to both save himself and also stop a spy ring which is trying to steal top secret information.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: Robert Donat, Madeleine Carroll, Lucie Mannheim
Saboteur (1942)
Action | Thriller | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Aircraft factory worker Barry Kane goes on the run across the United States when he is wrongly accused of starting a fire that killed his best friend.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: Priscilla Lane, Robert Cummings, Otto Kruger
Sabotage (1936)
Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A Scotland Yard undercover detective is on the trail of a saboteur who is part of a plot to set off a bomb in London. But when the detective's cover is blown, the plot begins to unravel.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: Sylvia Sidney, Oskar Homolka, Desmond Tester
Crime | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A man and his wife receive a clue to an imminent assassination attempt, only to learn that their daughter has been kidnapped to keep them quiet.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: Leslie Banks, Edna Best, Peter Lorre
Secret Agent (1936)
Drama | Mystery | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

After three British agents are assigned to assassinate a mysterious German spy during World War I, two of them become ambivalent when their duty to the mission conflicts with their consciences.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: John Gielgud, Madeleine Carroll, Robert Young
Charade (1963)
Comedy | Mystery | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

Romance and suspense in Paris, as a woman is pursued by several men who want a fortune her murdered husband had stolen. Who can she trust?

Director: Stanley Donen
Stars: Cary Grant, Audrey Hepburn, Walter Matthau
Comedy | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Five famous literary detective characters and their sidekicks are invited to a bizarre mansion to solve an even stranger mystery.

Director: Robert Moore
Stars: Peter Falk, Alec Guinness, Peter Sellers
Foul Play (1978)
Comedy | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A shy San Francisco librarian and a bumbling cop fall in love as they solve a crime involving albinos, dwarves, and the Catholic Church.

Director: Colin Higgins
Stars: Goldie Hawn, Chevy Chase, Burgess Meredith
Clue (1985)
Comedy | Crime | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Six guests are invited to a strange house and must cooperate with the staff to solve a murder mystery.

Director: Jonathan Lynn
Stars: Eileen Brennan, Tim Curry, Madeline Kahn
Sleuth (1972)
Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

A man who loves games and theater invites his wife's lover to meet him, setting up a battle of wits with potentially deadly results.

Director: Joseph L. Mankiewicz
Stars: Laurence Olivier, Michael Caine, Alec Cawthorne
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
...
...
...
Deputy Sheriff Calvin Wiggs
Parker Fennelly ...
Millionaire
Barry Macollum ...
Tramp
Dwight Marfield ...
Dr. Greenbow
...
Edit

Storyline

There is a dead well dressed man in a meadow clearing in the hills above a small Vermont town. Captain Albert Wiles, who stumbles across the body and finds by the man's identification that his name is Harry Worp, believes he accidentally shot Harry dead while he was shooting for rabbits. Captain Wiles wants to hide the body as he feels it is an easier way to deal with the situation than tell the authorities. While Captain Wiles is in the adjacent forest, he sees other people stumble across Harry, most who don't seem to know him or care or notice that he's dead. One person who does see Captain Wiles there is spinster Ivy Gravely, who vows to keep the Captain's secret about Harry. One person who Captain Wiles sees but doesn't see him back is young single mother Jennifer Rogers, who is the one person who does seem to know Harry and seems happy that he's dead. Later, another person who stumbles across both Harry and Captain Wiles is struggling artist Sam Marlowe, to who Captain Wiles ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A comedy about a corpse. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Mystery

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

3 October 1955 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Alfred Hitchcock's The Trouble with Harry  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$1,200,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.50 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The poem that the doctor is reading when he finally discovers the body is Sonnet 116 by William Shakespeare. See more »

Goofs

The word - ADMITTANCE - is misspelled on the Post Office sign in Wiggs Emporium. It reads: NO ADDMITANCE P.O.DEPT. See more »

Quotes

Sam Marlowe: Perharps I'll come back tomorrow.
Arnie: When's that?
Sam Marlowe: The day after today.
Arnie: That's yesterday. Today's tomorrow.
Sam Marlowe: It was.
Arnie: When was tomorrow yesterday?
Sam Marlowe: Today.
Arnie: Oh, sure. Yesterday.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Closing credits: "The trouble with Harry is over." See more »

Connections

Referenced in The A-Team: The Trouble with Harry (1986) See more »

Soundtracks

Flaggin' the Train to Tuscaloosa
Lyric by Mack David
Music by Raymond Scott
Sung by John Forsythe (uncredited)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Cinema's Best Shaggy Dog Story
5 September 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

With all humor, you either get the "joke" or you don't. If you don't, no amount of explaining can change your mind. If you do, the details are endlessly enjoyable.

Part of the joke that's "The Trouble With Harry" is that "nothing happens." Hitchcock's "anti-Hitchcock" film defies expectations for action, shock, mayhem, suspense, spectacular climaxes on national monuments, etc. Instead, it's a New England cross-stitch of lovingly detailed writing, acting, photography, directing and editing.

Saul Steinberg's title illustration tells you exactly what you're in for. One long pan of a child's drawing of birds and trees . . . ending with a corpse stretched out on the ground as "Directed by Alfred Hitchcock" briefly appears.

So meticulously is "The Trouble With Harry" conceived, the only two images in the title art that are NOT trees, plants or birds are a house with a rocking chair on its porch and that corpse. The film literally plays in reverse of the title sequence -- from little Arnie's (Jerry Mathers, pre-Beaver. The boy who drew the titles?) discovery of the corpse, back to the home with the rocking chair, as Hitchcock's final "joke" puts the audience safely to bed. A double bed, in this case.

What's the film about? Oh, Great Big Themes like Life and Death, Youth and Age, Love and Hate, Guilt and Innocence, Truth and Lies, Art and Pragmatism -- packaged with deceptive simplicity.

The "hero," Sam Marlowe (John Forsythe), is an artist. The man the "child" who drew the titles (Arnie, or someone like him) might have become. His name is an amalgamation of two of hard-boiled fiction's greatest detectives: Sam Spade and Philip Marlowe. Indeed, Sam Marlowe functions here as a "sort of" detective. But enough of pointing out the detailed construction of this script and film: repeated viewings yield far greater pleasures.

"Introducing Shirley MacLaine" in her first screen role threw that enduring actress into an astounding mix of old pros: Edmund Gwenn, Mildred Dunnock, Mildred Natwick and Forsythe. That MacLaine held the screen then, and still does 50 years later (name another major actor who can say that), validates Hitchcock's astute casting.

In fact, TTWH is a tribute to cinematic "acting" as much as anything else. These are among the finest performances ever captured of these terrific actors. Since there are none of the expected "spectacular" Hitchcock sequences, nor his nail-biting tension, all that's left is for the actors to fully inhabit their characters.

That they do with brilliance, efficiency and breathtaking comic timing. No pratfalls here. Just nuances.

Edmund Gwenn and Mildred Natwick are the real stars. Had Hitchcock said so, the film would never have been produced. Their scenes (they receive as much if not more screen time together than Forsythe and MacLaine) are possibly the most delightful (and yes, romantically and sexually tense) ever filmed of courtship in middle-and-old age. Perfectly realized in every intonation and gesture. Occasionally laugh-out-loud funny.

Theirs is paralleled by the courtship of the younger "stars," Forsythe and MacLaine. "Love" at both ends of life, young and old, and love's wonderful humor and mysterious redemption, even in the face of death -- that inconvenient corpse on the hill.

Perhaps the most surprising and powerful undertow in "The Trouble With Harry" (one hesitates to name it because it's handled so delicately) is Sex.

It is only barely present in the lines given the characters, but the subtext is always there. Occasionally, it boils over into an infinitely subtle burlesque, as in the exchange between Gwenn and Forsythe about crossing Miss Gravely's (get that name?) "threshold" for the first time.

The look in Gwenn's eyes and the repressed joy and romantic hope in his face -- even at his stage of life -- is bliss.

The coffee cup and saucer "for a man's fingers;" the ribbon for Miss Gravely's newly-cut hair (Wiggy cuts it in the general store -- Mildred Dunnock in another unbelievably subtle performance -- muttering, "Well, I guess it will grow back."); Arnie's dead rabbit and live frog; the constantly shifting implications of guilt in the death of "Harry" up there on the hill; the characters' struggles to regain innocence by "doing the right thing"; the closet door that swings open for no apparent reason (never explained); the characters' revelations of the truths about themselves; their wishes granted through Sam's "negotiations" with the millionaire art collector from the "city" -- ALL portrayed within the conservative but ultimately flexible confines of their New England repression and stoicism (yes, the film is also a satiric comment on '50s morality) -- these details and more finally yield a rich tapestry of our common humanity, observed at a particular time and place, through specific people caught in an absurd yet utterly plausible circumstance.

Nothing happens? Only somebody who doesn't know how to look and listen -- REALLY observe, like an artist / creator -- could reach that conclusion about "The Trouble With Harry." Only a genius, like Hitchcock, would have the audacity to pull the rug out from under his audience's expectations at the height of his career by offering a profoundly subtle morality play in the guise of a slightly macabre Hallmark Card.

When the final "revelation" arrives, in the last line that takes us home to the marital bed where love culminates and all human life begins -- yours and mine -- and draws from us a happy smile of recognition, so Hitchcock's greatest secret is revealed, more blatantly in this than any of his films.

"Life and death -- and all of it in between -- are a joke! Don't you get it?" It's there in all his pictures. Nowhere more lovingly and less showily presented than in "The Trouble With Harry." Thank you, Hitch.


86 of 96 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
The Real Trouble with Harry was... stealth_Frank
The door that keeps opening by itself? nirves
John Forsythe spr23
'Ward, I'm worried about the Beaver.....' collegeofuselessknowlege
This is absolutely the funniest hitchcock's film never_before_i_see_your_smile
Unnecessary ending BoxOfficePoison
Discuss The Trouble with Harry (1955) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?