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Calling Dr. Kildare (1939)

Passed | | Crime, Drama | 28 April 1939 (USA)
Dr. Gillespie tries to teach Jimmy Kildare a lesson by tossing him into a street clinic. Only Kildare gets called to take a bullet out of a suspected murderer, and when the cops collar him ... See full summary »


Harold S. Bucquet


Harry Ruskin (screen play), Willis Goldbeck (screen play) | 1 more credit »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Lew Ayres ... Dr. James Kildare
Lionel Barrymore ... Dr. Leonard Gillespie
Laraine Day ... Mary Lamont
Nat Pendleton ... Wayman
Lana Turner ... Rosalie
Samuel S. Hinds ... Dr. Stephen Kildare (as Samuel Hinds)
Lynne Carver ... Alice Raymond
Emma Dunn ... Mrs. Martha Kildare
Walter Kingsford ... Dr. Walter Carew
Alma Kruger ... Molly Byrd
Harlan Briggs ... James Galt
Henry Hunter Henry Hunter ... Harry Galt
Marie Blake ... Sally
Phillip Terry ... Bates
Roger Converse ... Joiner


Dr. Gillespie tries to teach Jimmy Kildare a lesson by tossing him into a street clinic. Only Kildare gets called to take a bullet out of a suspected murderer, and when the cops collar him for it, he has to try and prove his patient's innocence, especially for his sister Rosalie's sake. Written by Kathy Li

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

spy | murder | hospital | doctor | nurse | See All (23) »


Crime | Drama


Passed | See all certifications »






Release Date:

28 April 1939 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Dr. Kildare's Mistake See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


This film was first telecast in Seattle Wednesday 24 October 1956 on KING (Channel 5) and in Philadelphia Sunday 18 November 1956 on WFIL (Channel 6), followed by New York City Thursday 6 December 1956 on WCBS (Channel 2); in Altoona PA it first aired 1 February 1957 on WFBG (Channel 10), in Chicago 26 February 1957 on WBBM (Channel 2) and in Minneapolis 14 April 1957 on KMGM (Channel 9); on the West Coast, it was not telecast in Los Angeles until 18 April 1958 on KTTV (Channel 11) and in San Francisco 3 February 1959 on KGO (Channel 7). See more »


Dr. Leonard Gillespie: How much time have you wasted on this foolishness?
Dr. James Kildare: Only two days.
Dr. Leonard Gillespie: Unfortunately there's just as many diseases as there are persons. So at two days per disease, it'd take you till Judgment Day to make your diagnosis!
Dr. James Kildare: I was taught in medical school that the way to diagnose an illness was to check the clinical signs against the case history and draw a conclusion.
Dr. Leonard Gillespie: [lets out a disagreeable grunt]
Dr. James Kildare: Well ninety-nine times out of a hundred those rules work.
Dr. Leonard Gillespie: Well the hundredth man has a right to live, too!
See more »


Followed by Dr. Gillespie's Criminal Case (1943) See more »

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User Reviews

Kildare's Jackpot
28 December 2011 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

After winning a berth at Blair General Hospital as the assistant for Dr. Gillespie, Lew Ayres nearly blows it in this second Kildare feature Calling Dr. Kildare. In fact in real life his young career could and should have been over.

Lionel Barrymore as Gillespie sends Ayres out to a street clinic to get some hands on medical experience in which he is doing his best and learning his profession. But when an emergency outside call finds him patching up a gunshot wound in Don Barry it's the start of a real bad situation for Ayres.

While he tends Barry, Ayres sends the kid to call an ambulance as the law dictates in gunshot wounds, but the kid is waylaid by Lana Turner who arrives claiming to be Barry's brother. There's a manhunt out for him because he's accused of murdering someone whom he had a fight with. Guess who the fight was over?

In fact Ayres at her suggestion because he's thinking with the old male member still doesn't call the ambulance or report the gunshot wound which should have ended his promising medical career before it started.

Lew Ayres would not be the first or the last actor to get beguiled into doing something stupid and/or foolish by Lana Turner. A little bit of the devilish vixen that Lana gave us in The Postman Always Rings Twice is very present here. She's the main reason to watch Calling Dr. Kildare.

Of course it all works out because there has to be a next Kildare film. Unless Kildare were to lose his medical license and take up a career as an underground practitioner to the underworld.

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