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Screaming Mimi (1958)

5.8
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Ratings: 5.8/10 from 288 users  
Reviews: 19 user | 15 critic

Exotic dancer Virginia Wilson sees a man get shot moments after he tries to knife her in a shower, so she goes to Dr. Greenwood a psychiatrist for therapy. He falls in love with her and ... See full summary »

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(screenplay), (novel)
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Cast

Cast overview:
...
Virginia Wilson / Yolanda Lange
...
Bill Sweeney
...
Joann 'Gypsy' Masters
Harry Townes ...
Dr. Greenwood / Bill Green
Linda Cherney ...
Ketti
Romney Brent ...
Charlie Weston
Red Norvo ...
Red Yost
Red Norvo Trio ...
Themselves
Alan Gifford ...
Capt. Bline
Oliver McGowan ...
Walter Krieg
Stephen Ellsworth ...
Dr. Joseph Robinson
...
Raoul Reynarde
Frank J. Scannell ...
Paul, the Bartender
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Storyline

Exotic dancer Virginia Wilson sees a man get shot moments after he tries to knife her in a shower, so she goes to Dr. Greenwood a psychiatrist for therapy. He falls in love with her and takes over her life, although she insists on continuing her career at the El Madhouse nightclub. The club's tough owner is none other than Gypsy Rose Lee who plays 'Gypsy' and sings an incredibly bad song ("Put the Blame on Mame") when Virginia is late one night. The traumatized Virginia is suspected of a series of murders. Each victim had purchased a contorted sculpture of a woman called the Screaming Mimi, which was created by her step-brother Charlie who was also responsible for shooting her attacker. It's up to a handsome columnist Bill Sweeny to figure it all out. Written by alfiehitchie

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The strip-tease murder case! See more »


Certificate:

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

8 August 1958 (Finland)  »

Also Known As:

La locura de Mimí  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

A large part of the score, including the main title theme, is from Leonard Bernstein's score to On the Waterfront (1954). See more »

Quotes

Bill Sweeney: How tall are you, Yolanda?
Virginia Wilson aka Yolanda Lange: With heels or without?
Bill Sweeney: With anyone. Me, for instance.
See more »

Connections

Version of The Bird with the Crystal Plumage (1970) See more »

Soundtracks

Put the Blame on Mame
(uncredited)
Written by Doris Fisher and Allan Roberts
Sung by Gypsy Rose Lee
See more »

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User Reviews

Read the book first! (if you can find it)

When I first read Fredric Brown's 1948 novel, I was mesmerized. I have read it a few times since and have no intention of stopping-- it's really one of those forgotten classics of the hardboiled genre. Also being a Fellini fan, I have long been curious to see the film, Anita Ekberg's first starring role, (La Dolce Vita was two years later.) I know that Fellini was a pretty big fan of Brown-- at one point he planned to adapt his sci-fi novel What Mad Universe-- so I'm pretty sure he discovered Ekberg in this film.

Though I think the above reviewer was kind of harsh on Oswald and the cast-- especially Harry Townes, who understates the creepy obsessiveness of Doc Greene very well-- the fact is the movie falls short of the book by a considerable margin. I would put most of the blame on screenwriter Robert Blees, who had previously scripted the giant monster movie The Black Scorpion. But for all its faults (unfortunately, the ending is one of the things they botched) the film has its charms. Not only the cinematography but the music performed by Red Norvo captures the mood of the novel very well. And there are scenes that they actually get right. So I guess it's a love/hate thing for me.

Before I go, one last sidelight. Gypsy Rose Lee, who's featured in Mimi, was an exotic dancer in the forties and wrote one novel, The G-String Murders-- also about a killer who stalks strippers-- which was adapted as Lady of Burlesque, with Barbara Stanwyck.


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