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Johnny Trouble (1957)

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Katherine Chandler lives in an apartment house that has been purchased by the local college for a boy's dormitory. She refuses to vacate, certain that her son, who was a wild boy and ... See full summary »



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Director: John Cromwell
Stars: Dana Andrews, Merle Oberon, Ethel Barrymore


Cast overview, first billed only:
Katherine Chandler AKA Nana
Jesse White ...
Rand Harper ...
Elliott (as Edward Byrnes)
Edward Castagna ...
Giuseppe (Tex) Costanza
Nino Tempo ...
Jim Bridges ...
James Bell ...
Samuel Colt ...
Kip King ...


Katherine Chandler lives in an apartment house that has been purchased by the local college for a boy's dormitory. She refuses to vacate, certain that her son, who was a wild boy and disappeared after being expelled from the school twenty-sever years ago, will return. The college lets her remain as an unofficial dorm-mother to the students who treat her as their collective grandmother. She becomes convinced that one of the wild students, Johnny, is her grandson since he bears the same name as her lost son. Her attentions reform him, and he is persuaded to marry his pregnant girlfriend, Julie Horton. Katherine awaits the arrival of Johnny's parents, certain that his father is her missing son. Written by Les Adams <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Her Love Made It So...There Was No Such Thing As A Bad Boy (original poster)


Drama | Romance


Approved | See all certifications »




Release Date:

24 September 1957 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Esperança Morre Conosco  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Warner Brothers distributed this on a double bill with The Helen Morgan Story (1957). See more »


Remake of Someone to Remember (1943) See more »


Johnny Trouble
Written by Peggy Lee
Performed by Eddie Robertson
See more »

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User Reviews

Sentimental tale of grandma thinking she has found a lost grandson
31 August 2012 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

The cast is excellent (Ethel Barrymore, Cecil Kellaway, Stuart Whitman, Carolyn Jones) and the story not bad. Ethel, in a wheelchair, owns her apartment in a hotel that becomes a young man's college dorm. She soon civilizes the guys and they are calling her "nanna" and taking tea and cake. Ethel has a chance to redeem herself for a sin of the past that drove her son away, never to be heard from again. It arises through Whitman's character who has her name (Chandler). Whitman, in an early film, is a bit wild, a bit shaken by war, and having a go with Carolyn Jones, who makes her mark, as usual. All 4 of these players make their mark here. Kellaway knows how to add subtlety to a role. Whitman conveys roughness, vulnerability, confusion, independence all in one. Carolyn is smitten but still independent. Ethel is a master at psychology, and she even gets to read a little Shakespeare.

The film almost seems like a TV show at times because a good deal of it is inside the dorm. Overall, it gets quite sugary and sentimental, which is my main reason for making it a 5, not a 6. It also tends to lethargy, even with one fistfight. There just isn't that much action. Jesse White provides good support as usual.

Whitman came late in the Hollywood cycle, so that once the 60s came in with its altered views and casting, he went more into TV series. He had a long career and probably is an underrated actor. I've never seen him not bring something to any part and handle it very well indeed. Carolyn Jones never failed to make her parts interesting. Miss Barrymore is of course of an iconic family of stage and screen. She tended to get type cast into motherly, grandmotherly, matronly, elderly roles that she filled out smoothly. Kellaway is unforgettable in The Postman Always Rings Twice. He always provides strong yet unobtrusive support.

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