MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Up 4,898 this week

A Hole in the Head (1959)

 -  Comedy  -  15 July 1959 (USA)
6.4
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 6.4/10 from 1,579 users  
Reviews: 31 user | 13 critic

An impractical widower tries to hang onto his Miami hotel and his 12-year-old son.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (play)
0Check in
0Share...

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Amazon Instant Video

Editors' Spotlight

Sundance 2015

Watch our IMDb & AIV Sundance Studio Interviews with Keith Simanton

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 25 titles
created 18 May 2011
 
a list of 31 titles
created 19 Aug 2011
 
list image
a list of 45 titles
created 24 Nov 2011
 
a list of 32 titles
created 19 Jun 2012
 
a list of 33 titles
created 14 May 2013
 

Related Items

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: A Hole in the Head (1959)

A Hole in the Head (1959) on IMDb 6.4/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of A Hole in the Head.
Won 1 Oscar. Another 3 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

A New York gangster and his girlfriend attempt to turn street beggar Apple Annie into a society lady when the peddler learns her daughter is marrying royalty.

Director: Frank Capra
Stars: Glenn Ford, Bette Davis, Hope Lange
Broadway Bill (1934)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A runaway heiress and her sister's husband join forces to race the latter's fast horse, Broadway Bill.

Director: Frank Capra
Stars: Warner Baxter, Myrna Loy, Walter Connolly
Drama | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Frank Sinatra plays Joe E. Lewis, a famous comedian of the 1930s-50s. When the movie opens, Lewis is a young, talented singer who performs in speakeasies. When he bolts one job for another,... See full summary »

Director: Charles Vidor
Stars: Frank Sinatra, Mitzi Gaynor, Jeanne Crain
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A gangster tries to make Apple Annie, the Times Square apple seller, a lady for a day.

Director: Frank Capra
Stars: Warren William, May Robson, Guy Kibbee
Tony Rome (1967)
Crime | Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Tony Rome, a tough Miami PI living on a houseboat, is hired by a local millionaire to find jewelry stolen from his daughter, and in the process has several encounters with local hoods as well as the Miami Beach PD.

Director: Gordon Douglas
Stars: Frank Sinatra, Jill St. John, Richard Conte
Meet John Doe (1941)
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

A man needing money agrees to impersonate a nonexistent person who said he'd be committing suicide as a protest, and a political movement begins.

Director: Frank Capra
Stars: Gary Cooper, Barbara Stanwyck, Edward Arnold
Documentary | Short | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.1/10 X  
Director: Frank Capra
Stars: Adolf Hitler, John Lund
Certificate: Passed Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

It's the 1930s, the Depression era, and the Board of Directors of Thomas Dickson's bank want Dickson to merge with New York Trust and resign. He refuses. One night, Dickson's bank is robbed... See full summary »

Directors: Frank Capra, Allan Dwan, and 1 more credit »
Stars: Walter Huston, Pat O'Brien, Kay Johnson
Flight (1929)
Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A Marine flyer and his flight school mentor fall for the same beautiful nurse.

Director: Frank Capra
Stars: Jack Holt, Lila Lee, Ralph Graves
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A meek Belgian soldier (Harry Langdon) fighting in World War I receives penpal letters and a photo from "Mary Brown", an American girl he has never met. He becomes infatuated with her by ... See full summary »

Director: Frank Capra
Stars: Harry Langdon, Priscilla Bonner, Gertrude Astor
Animation
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  
Directors: Frank Capra, William T. Hurtz
Stars: Richard Carlson, Frank Baxter, Bil Baird
Our Mr. Sun (TV Movie 1956)
Animation
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Dale Phillips (Since this is an educational film dramatizing facts about the sun it would be difficult to write a summary without spoilers. This summary is meant to excite and encourage ... See full summary »

Directors: Frank Capra, William T. Hurtz
Stars: Eddie Albert, Lionel Barrymore, Frank Baxter
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
James Komack ...
Julius Manetta (as Jimmy Komack)
...
Fred
George DeWitt ...
Mendy Yales
Benny Rubin ...
Abe Diamond
Ruby Dandridge ...
Sally
B.S. Pully ...
Hood
Joyce Nizzari ...
Alice
Edit

Storyline

Tony Manetta runs an unsuccessful Miami hotel, on which he can't meet the payments. Another liability is his weakness for dames (Shirl, his sexy current flame, is even less responsible than Tony). But a solid asset is Ally, his sensible 12-year-old son. When Tony wants stolid brother Mario to bail him out again, Mario makes conditions: give up Ally, or at least get married to a "nice, quiet little woman" of his selection. Tony and Ally just play along to be diplomatic, but when the woman in question proves to look like Eleanor Parker... Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The most wonderful entertainment in the whole wide wonderful world!

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

15 July 1959 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Un hombre sin suerte  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The original Broadway production of "A Hole in the Head" by Arnold Schulman opened at the Plymouth Theater on February 28, 1957, ran for 156 performances and closed July 13, 1957. The cast included Paul Douglas, David Burns, Lee Grant, Kay Medford and Joyce Van Patten. See more »

Goofs

When Ally is shown running back along the street calling for his father at the end, in the distance the taxi is seen making a U-turn while a large crowd of onlookers stand on the streets behind it, obviously watching the scene being filmed. See more »

Quotes

Fred: Life is just a bowl of cherries
Tony Manetta: Why
Fred: I don't know. I ain't a philosopher!
See more »

Crazy Credits

The title and the names of Frank Capra and the leading actors appear as an aerial advertisement attached to the Goodyear blimp. See more »

Connections

References One Million B.C. (1940) See more »

Soundtracks

All My Tomorrows
(1959)
Written by Sammy Cahn and Jimmy Van Heusen (as James Van Heusen)
Sung by Frank Sinatra (uncredited) behind credits
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Hilarious Eddie G. leads solid cast in Frank Sinatra's Capra movie
4 July 2011 | by (Upstate New York) – See all my reviews

A HOLE IN THE HEAD (1959) might not live up to Frank Capra's earlier classics like MR. SMITH GOES TO WASHINGTON (1939) or IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE (1946), but it's a fine film. The story deals with a single father struggling to keep his Miami hotel business afloat while dreaming of bigger, better things. The material comes from a stage play, but there's a sense of the familiar Capra values. The Capra-esque resolution is not as powerful as in his earlier films, though, and isn't completely satisfying.

The film has its weaknesses, but should not be dismissed. The movie is actually pretty funny at times, to go with the family-friendly themes. The cast is universally excellent and boasts Frank Sinatra (in single dad mode), the great Edward G. Robinson (hilarious as Sinatra's square older brother), the incomparable Thelma Ritter (as Eddie G.'s wife), Eleanor Parker (as a lonely widow), and even Keenan Wynn (as Sinatra's successful friend). Sinatra's on-screen son is played well by young Eddie Hodges and Sinatra's out-there, bongo-chick girlfriend is played by Carolyn Jones (Morticia Addams on "The Addams Family").

Robinson and Ritter are superb as the shop-owning husband and wife who fly down to Florida to help out Sinatra. Who knew Edward G. Robinson was so adept at comedy? The man could do it all. He's great complaining about his no-good brother, his hula-hooping embarrassment of a son, the peculiar rocking chair in Sinatra's room, and the holes in the ice cubes. Ritter is the voice of reason between the brothers and wants what is best for Sinatra's young son. Frank Sinatra does alright, playing a loving father who's still a playboy at heart. He struggles along financially, but never admits defeat.

Apparently the script was adapted from a Yiddish play, which explains why Eddie G. and Thelma Ritter (and sometimes even Sinatra) seem to be doing some Jewish-style shtick. It's funny stuff, but it was a little odd thinking of Frank Sinatra coming from a Jewish family. (In the movie they're Italians, I guess.)

Frank Capra's direction allows the actors time to inhabit the scenes. I noticed the many relatively long takes, which are always impressive. Scenes in Sinatra's living room feature the bickering brothers on opposite ends of the widescreen frame, with Ritter in the middle. The characters are standing up and sitting down and carrying on back and forth without the camera cutting away. Later, Sinatra and Hodges sit down together and sing "High Hopes" in one take and there seems to almost be a spontaneity to the duet (flubbed lines? ad-libs?).

When hotel owner Sinatra is desperate for cash before an approaching deadline, we don't feel for him the way we feel for busted banker George Bailey. I guess it's because it seems that Sinatra's character put himself in that position. But considering that he needs to support his darling of a son, we feel sorry for Sinatra. Especially when we see him take what little money he has to the racetrack with his high-rolling buddy.

One of Frank Capra's last movies, A HOLE IN THE HEAD has value at least as a curiosity. Frank Sinatra sharing the screen with Edward G. Robinson? Thelma Ritter thrown into the mix as Robinson's wife? The origin of the hit (and Oscar-winning) song "High Hopes" (familiar to fans of another film about a single dad and his son, A GOOFY MOVIE)? But I think the film also has merits of its own. There's some great comedy, particularly from Eddie G., and the widowed-father-meets-lovely-widow story might warm a few hearts.


2 of 2 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Catalina Island? martini-29
Keyword: Annoying! SWestDave
Clairvoyant Disney World Prediction? robert48-1
The original version iss246
Filming locations Doug-169
Just Saw This Movie carolmr527
Discuss A Hole in the Head (1959) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?