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Screaming Mimi (1958)

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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 »



(screenplay), (novel)
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Title: Screaming Mimi (1958)

Screaming Mimi (1958) on IMDb 5.9/10

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


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


Suspense around every curve! See more »


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Release Date:

8 August 1958 (Finland)  »

Also Known As:

Screaming Mimi  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


In 1958, Columbia Pictures distributed this film on a double bill with This Angry Age (1957). See more »


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 »


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


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

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User Reviews

One of the 1950s most twisted noir films!
20 September 2008 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

One of the 1950s strangest noir films, Gerd Oswald's sensational and twisted 1958 psycho- shocker SCREAMING MIMI was based on a pulp novel by the great Fredric Brown. This is one film that devotees of the truly bizarre cannot afford to miss.

Alcoholic newspaper columnist Bill Sweeney (Philip Carey) becomes entwined in a string of grisly murders that seem to revolve around exotic stripper Yolanda Lange (Anita Ekberg!!). Seems that Yolanda killed a man a couple of years earlier who tried to attack her while she showered. Traumatized by this event, she spends some time in a sanitarium and, upon her release, seeks out the help of psychiatrist Dr. Greenwood (the ever creepy Harry Townes) for some quick and dirty therapy. This "poor man's Svengali" falls in love with her (natch!) and soon insinuates himself into her life, even going so far as managing her career by getting her a job at the El Madhouse, a seedy nightclub run by "Gypsy" Mapes ("Gypsy" Rose Lee!). But before long a series of brutal murders begin to occur and poor Yolanda appears to be the prime suspect. (I won't bother to go into the reasons why; it would probably take longer than the running time of the film.)

Anyone looking for or concerned with conventional logic might likely be put off by this wildly lurid and threadbare melodrama as nothing quite makes sense in this demented Fulleresque nether world. But those hungry for the wonderful cheap thrills only to be found in nightmare B movies of the fringe variety will probably come away from the table more than satisfied. Artfully photographed by Burnett Guffey, SCREAMING MIMI probably looks a lot better than it deserves to, and Gerd Oswald's eccentric direction doesn't hurt either. Oswald, as many might recall, later went on to produce and direct many of the more stellar episodes of TV's "Outer Limits" in the early 60s. SCREAMING MIMI provided him with the most stunningly perfect testing ground imaginable.

Of note to jazz fans: the incredible Red Norvo Trio is featured as the house band at the El Madhouse.

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