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Screaming Mimi (1958)

5.9
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Ratings: 5.9/10 from 311 users  
Reviews: 22 user | 16 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:

Suspense around every curve! See more »


Certificate:

See all certifications »
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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:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The Red Norvo Trio (the musicians in Joann's club) is really a quartet. 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

Referenced in Last Action Hero (1993) See more »

Soundtracks

Sweet Genevieve
(uncredited)
Music by Henry Tucker
Lyrics by George Cooper
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Low-budget thriller
11 June 2008 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

1958's "Screaming Mimi" is based on a novel by Frederic Brown and stars Anita Ekberg, Philip Carey, Harry Townes and Gypsy Rose Lee. Ekberg is Virginia, aka Yolanda, a drop-dead gorgeous exotic dancer who is institutionalized after nearly being murdered at her stepbrother's house. The kindly psychiatrist (Townes) trying to help her takes the transference a bit too far - he fakes her death and takes off with her. Virginia changes her name to Yolanda and gets a job as an exotic dancer in a club run by Joann Masters (Lee). A reporter named Sweeney (Philip Carey) gets onto a story about a slasher and crosses paths with Virginia/Yolanda and, like every other man, falls for her. In Yolanda's dressing room, Sweeney finds a statue - the same statue was found next to the last murder victim, also an exotic dancer.

This is an interesting story for sure with sexual undertones (or shall I say overtones) galore - Ekberg's chained slave dance, the lesbian relationship Joann has with another dancer, the statue fetish, and Ekberg herself, sex on heels. Her first film was "Mississippi Gambler," in which she was uncredited; not surprisingly, she got the attention of the film's star, Tyrone Power, and had an affair with him that lasted into the mid-'50s. She even got to meet his relatives in Cincinnati - and he was still married at the time. Was she good in this? I have no idea; she's so stunning, it doesn't matter. Philip Carey, known today for his portrayal of Asa Buchanan in "One Life to Live" was a hunk in the '50s who was relegated to B films costarring many beautiful women - he's easy on the eyes too and does a decent job as Sweeney. Harry Townes had a huge career in television and underplays the role of Greene, the psychiatrist. He does a good job - if the character appeared sinister, it wouldn't have been believable.

A story like this could easily have been given a big budget and big director and been much more effective. As it is, it keeps one's attention with its twists and turns and one of the great va-va-vooms, Ekberg.


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