Down 9,114 this week

Back Street (1961)

 |  Drama  |  12 October 1961 (USA)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 6.8/10 from 680 users  
Reviews: 38 user | 2 critic

Ambitious but thwarted, Rae Smith meets handsome Marine Paul Saxon, (of the Saxon department store chain), as he passes through Lincoln, Nebraska, on his way home from World War II. There's... See full summary »



(novel), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
0Check in

Celebrate IMDb's 25th Anniversary with Photos We Love

IMDb turns a 25 on October 17! To celebrate, we put together a gallery of some of our favorite movie, TV, and event photos from the last 25 years.

See the Photos We Love

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 32 titles
created 12 Dec 2011
a list of 771 titles
created 04 Mar 2012
a list of 1076 titles
created 18 Jun 2013
list image
a list of 12 titles
created 19 Dec 2013
a list of 82 titles
created 13 May 2014

Related Items

Search for "Back Street" on

Connect with IMDb

Share this Rating

Title: Back Street (1961)

Back Street (1961) on IMDb 6.8/10

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

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Back Street.
Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Ada (1961)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Bo Gillis is running for Governor. Steve writes the speeches, Sylvester runs the campaign and Bo plays the guitar. Everything is going according to the plan until a hooker named Ada is ... See full summary »

Director: Daniel Mann
Stars: Susan Hayward, Dean Martin, Wilfrid Hyde-White
Certificate: Passed Biography | Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Deprived of a normal childhood by her ambitious mother, Katie, Lillian Roth becomes a star of Broadway and Hollywood before she is twenty. Shortly before her marriage to her childhood ... See full summary »

Director: Daniel Mann
Stars: Susan Hayward, Richard Conte, Eddie Albert
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A divorced couple's teen-age daughter stands trial for stabbing her mother's latest lover.

Director: Edward Dmytryk
Stars: Bette Davis, Susan Hayward, Mike Connors
Drama | Music | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

Film version of Jacqueline Susann's best-selling novel chronicling the rise and fall of three young ladies in show business.

Director: Mark Robson
Stars: Barbara Parkins, Patty Duke, Paul Burke
Midnight Lace (1960)
Thriller | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

In London, a newly-wed American woman's sanity comes into question, when she claims to be the victim of a stalker.

Director: David Miller
Stars: Doris Day, Rex Harrison, John Gavin
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A Swedish woman wants her American host to father her baby.

Director: Walter Lang
Stars: Susan Hayward, James Mason, Julie Newmar
Drama | History | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

After King David sees the beautiful Bathsheba bathing from the palace roof, he enters into an adulterous affair which has tragic consequences for his family and Israel.

Director: Henry King
Stars: Gregory Peck, Susan Hayward, Raymond Massey
Summer Flight (1963)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Mike, a famed racing driver and an old flame of hers, is worried that Laura may be ill. Tricking her into a doctor's examination, she discovers she is; a brain operation to remove a tumor ... See full summary »

Director: Daniel Petrie
Stars: Susan Hayward, Michael Craig, Diane Baker
Biography | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A prostitute, sentenced to death for alleged murder, pleads her innocence.

Director: Robert Wise
Stars: Susan Hayward, Simon Oakland, Virginia Vincent
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A physician Christine Allison)is employed by an attorney, played by Peter Finch, who formerly prosecuted her on charges of euthanasia to watch over his mentally ill wife.

Director: Robert Stevens
Stars: Susan Hayward, Peter Finch, Diane Cilento
Back Street (1941)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Pretty Rae Smith and handsome Walter Saxel meet, fall in love and make plans to marry. Unfortunately, their marriage plans get sabotaged when a jealous beau makes Rae miss the ceremony. The... See full summary »

Director: Robert Stevenson
Stars: Charles Boyer, Margaret Sullavan, Richard Carlson
Back Street (1932)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A woman's love for and devotion to a married man results in her being relegated to the "back streets" of his life.

Director: John M. Stahl
Stars: Irene Dunne, John Boles, June Clyde


Cast overview, first billed only:
Rae Smith
Paul Saxon
Liz Saxon
Charles Drake ...
Virginia Grey ...
Janey nee Smith
Tammy Marihugh ...
Robert Eyer ...
Paul Saxon Jr.
Mrs. Evans
Doreen McLean ...
Miss Hatfield
Alex Gerry ...
Mr. Venner
Karen Norris ...
Mrs. Penworth
Charley Claypole
Mary Lawrence ...
Marge Claypole
Joseph Cronin ...
Airport Clerk


Ambitious but thwarted, Rae Smith meets handsome Marine Paul Saxon, (of the Saxon department store chain), as he passes through Lincoln, Nebraska, on his way home from World War II. There's a definite spark between them but circumstances intervene and he leaves town without her. Later she learns he's married. Determined to make it as a fashion designer, Rae moves to New York and becomes a great success. One day she happens to meet Paul again and again there's that spark but he's still married so, as a form of escape, Rae moves to Rome to set up shop. Once again she meets Paul and finally they begin an actual affair since Paul's shrewish, drunken wife, Liz, won't give him a divorce. Time passes, the affair continues whenever time and place permit, but then, Paul's young son finds out about Rae and Rae's back-street world begins to crumble. Written by dinky-4 of Minneapolis

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




See all certifications »


Official Sites:



Release Date:

12 October 1961 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

La calle de atrás  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The world premier was in Hollywood at the Warner Theater (later the Pacific Cinerama Theater) at 6433 Hollywood Blvd. A picture postcard was made showing a photograph of the opening night scene of "Back Street". The image with searchlights, cars, and crowds was depicted as a "typical Hollywood scene". See more »


Mr. Venner: [welcoming her to his shaded hotel room] I've been looking forward to seeing you.
Rae Smith: But then why don't you turn on the lights? I don't glow in the dark you know.
See more »


Version of Back Street (1941) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

A film I always go back to
27 January 2006 | by (Brazil) – See all my reviews

Many of the past reviewers of BACK STREET make good points in their comments on the film, stressing its clichés, its contrivances, its lack of real sincerity and emotion. Although I can see these points here and there, I have been hooked to this film ever since I saw it as a teenager, in the early sixties. Does this attraction have to do with the story itself? For me it does, no matter how rehashed it may be. Does it have to do with the characters? Yes, no matter how trite and unoriginal they may be. Does it have to do with the actors? CERTAINLY, especially Susan Hayward, an actress I admire profoundly, who is capable of keeping my attention as few others can, and who always dazzles with with her technique and capacity to be true, no matter how trashy the material originally is. Of course, BACK STREET owes a lot to its production values, the cinematography, the sets and gowns, but the motive of my attraction lies somewhere else, and it must be deep in myself, an area that was already sensitive to the film's values when I first saw it as a boy of 13.

9 of 10 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Susan Hayward As Mistress? straykitten
the Characters in back street Ellybama23
Backstreet 1961 LiviaJmz
Background music--Tchaikovsky? craighenderson-925-318178
Discuss Back Street (1961) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: