6.9/10
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94 user 40 critic

Bell Book and Candle (1958)

A modern-day witch likes her neighbor but despises his fiancée, so she enchants him to love her instead, only to fall in love with him for real.

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(screenplay), (play)
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Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
...
Sidney Redlitch
...
Bianca de Passe
...
...
Merle Kittridge
Philippe Clay ...
French Singer at the Zodiac Club
Bek Nelson ...
Tina - Shep's Secretary
...
Andy White - Shep's Co-Publisher
The Brothers Candoli ...
Musicians at the Zodiac Club
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Storyline

Gillian Holroyd is just your average, modern-day, witch, living in a New York apartment with her Siamese familiar, Pyewacket. But one day a handsome publisher, Shep Henderson walks into her building and Gillian decides she wants him--especially as it turns out he's marrying Merle Kittridge, an old poison penpal from Gillian's college days. So, Gillian casts a spell over Shep. But her powers are in danger of being exorcised by something stronger than the bell-book-and-candle routine: Love. Written by Kathy Li

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A bewitching comedy about an enchanting subject! See more »


Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

19 December 1958 (Finland)  »

Also Known As:

Bell, Book and Candle  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Australians were still mainly tea drinkers in 1958 and they would have been amused to see Kim Novak put about 7 spoonfuls of tea in the VERY small pot she brewed for James Stewart. The tradition is "one for each person and one for the pot". In this case 3 spoons. That tea would have undrinkable. See more »

Goofs

When Queenie throws back the curtain to join Gillian in the back room for the "summoning" scene, you can see the thread that keeps the curtain back so that the camera can follow Queenie. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Gillian 'Gil' Holroyd: Oh, Pye, Pye, Pyewacket. What's the matter with me? Why do I feel this way? It's such a rut. The same old thing day after day. Same old people. I know I'm feeling sorry for myself but it's true. Why don't you give me something for Christmas, Pye?
The Cat: Meow.
Gillian 'Gil' Holroyd: What would I like?
The Cat: Meow.
Gillian 'Gil' Holroyd: I'd like to do something different. I'd like to meet something different.
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Connections

Featured in Bunheads: Next (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

From Here To Eternity
(uncredited)
Written by Robert Wells and Fred Karger
Short excerpt in dance scene
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Kim Novak bewitches Jimmy Stewart, and the viewer as well...
1 June 2000 | by (Los Angeles, California) – See all my reviews

The John Van Druten Broadway hit is brought to the screen with a maximum of star power in this romantic fantasy about a modern-day witch who beguiles a successful Manhattan publisher. James Stewart may get top billing, but it is Kim Novak who steals the show as one of the most alluring witches ever to cast a spell on the movie screen. The lead pairing is, in fact, one of the movie's few weaknesses: the gray-haired Stewart seems a bit old for the role, and while it is easy to see why he falls hard for Novak, it's a little harder to understand what she finds attractive about him, as they seem mismatched in temperment and outlook. (It is one of the story's amusing conceits that witches and warlocks are portrayed as Greenwich Village beatniks and bohemians.) Curiously, the Stewart-Novak pairing would generate a lot more heat in "Vertigo", released the same year as this film, but then "Vertigo" had a compelling suspense story, and the benefit of Alfred Hitchcock's direction.

The film's comic moments are mostly provided by the stellar supporting cast, including a young Jack Lemmon (as Kim's warlock brother), Elsa Lanchester (their ditzy aunt), and Ernie Kovacs (!) as a befuddled writer. Hermione Gingold even shows up in a hilarious cameo as a sort of Grand Witch. There's lots to like in this movie--wit, romance, and a great cast--that is, if you can possibly take your eyes off the enchanting Miss Novak. I have seen the movie a half a dozen times, and I never can.


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