6.4/10
1,903
32 user 26 critic

A Hole in the Head (1959)

Approved | | Comedy | 15 July 1959 (USA)
An impractical widower tries to hang onto his Miami hotel and his 12-year-old son.

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(screenplay), (play)
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 3 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

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

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

15 July 1959 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Eine Nummer zu groß  »

Box Office

Gross:

$11,000,000 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The first time Miss Wexler arrives drunkenly back at the hotel, as she goes up the stairs, Fred calls 'Excelsior' after her. This is a reference to the poem, "Excelsior", by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. See more »

Goofs

At night at the kennel club, the lights over the bleachers go dark before the dog race starts, yet the shots of Tony and Jerry talking are still brightly lit. 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

Featured in Sinatra: All or Nothing at All: Part 2 (2015) See more »

Soundtracks

High Hopes
(1959)
Written by Sammy Cahn and Jimmy Van Heusen (as James Van Heusen)
Sung by Frank Sinatra (uncredited) and Eddie Hodges (uncredited)
See more »

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User Reviews

 
An Underrated Gem
2 January 2001 | by (Hollywood) – See all my reviews

This is film is a rare commodity as a Hollywood product - a wonderful "little" film. By little, I mean unpretentious. Perhaps this is because Frank Capra had a talent for telling inspirational, uplifting or "message" stories without seeming to preach. We all know the Ralph Cramden character

  • the botched hero with "high hopes". This is Frank Sinatra's Tony Maneta.
Unlike Jimmy Stewart's George Bailey in Capra's "It's a Wonderful Life," Tony Maneta isn't beset by problems circumstantial so much as personal. Yet, whether the antagonist is an ungrateful world or a character flaw, Capra and playwright/screenwriter Arnold Schulman recognize the abiding nobility of the human spirit's determination to overcome the odds.

I love the setting in "Hole in the Head". It's a treat to see South Miami Beach during a period when formerly glamorous hotels had gone to seed, knowing that they would one day rise again. I don't think anyone would have given them a chance at the time of the story, just like Tony Maneta's prospects. But "Hole in the Head" makes us want to believe, that just by surviving, like South Beach, Tony will one day triumph.

By the way, there's a wonderful performance by the underappreciated Eddie Hodges, whose minor billing is unjustified, considering his character's major part in the story.


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