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H.M. Pulham, Esq. (1941)

2:41 | Trailer
A man who lived his life as he was was told he should, not as he would have chosen to, is brought out of his shell by a beautiful young woman.


King Vidor


John P. Marquand (novel), Elizabeth Hill (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
2 wins. See more awards »





Complete credited cast:
Hedy Lamarr ... Marvin Myles
Robert Young ... Harry Pulham
Ruth Hussey ... Kay Motford
Charles Coburn ... Mr. Pulham Sr.
Van Heflin ... Bill King
Fay Holden ... Mrs. John Pulham
Bonita Granville ... Mary Pulham
Douglas Wood ... Mr. Bullard
Charles Halton ... Walter Kaufman
Leif Erickson ... Rodney 'Bo-Jo' Brown (as Leif Erikson)
Phil Brown ... Joe Bingham
David Clyde ... Hugh the Butler
Sara Haden ... Miss Rollo


Fortysomething, blue blooded Boston born and bred, Harvard educated businessman Harry Pulham leads a regimented, routinized life with his wife, the former Kay Motford, who he's known since childhood. Harry outwardly believes he is all the more happy because of the way his life is, which was somewhat predetermined as part of his upbringing. This day, he receives two telephone calls which make him examine his life. The first is from Bo-Jo Brown, a Harvard colleague who is heading a twenty-five year reunion committee, with Harry foisted into the job of writing attendee biographies, which is to include his own. The second is from Marvin Myles, a former work colleague from his time over twenty years ago at the J.T. Bullard Advertising Agency in New York City, that job which Harry got from his more liberally minded Harvard friend Bill King. The result of these two telephone calls makes Harry wonder if he is happy, if he is or ever was in love with Kay, and if he never was if he would have ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


MILLIONS HAVE READ IT!..A Book-Of-The-Month selection...as a Readers' Digest story...as a McCall Magazine serial. (original 6x7.5 newspaper ad) See more »


Drama | Romance


Passed | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


Very strangely, no one in the film, especially her life-long flame Harry Pulham, ever comments on the extreme oddity of the distinctly male first name of heroine Marvin Myles. Nor, despite her obvious European accent and her claim that she wasn't born in the US, is her native country or ethnic background ever identified. See more »


The flashback scenes in a taxi take place in 1919, however, the footage through rear-projection through the back window of the cab clearly show late 1930s automobiles. See more »


Harry Moulton Pulham: They say that you can get over anything in time. I don't believe you can... but given enough time you can put it where it belongs.
See more »


Featured in Bombshell: The Hedy Lamarr Story (2017) See more »


Bridal Chorus (Here Comes the Bride)
(1850) (uncredited)
from "Lohengrin"
Written by Richard Wagner
Played at the wedding
Words spoken by Robert Young
See more »

User Reviews

Hedy and Robert shine
9 February 1999 | by bruno-32See all my reviews

Previous comments referred to the slow pace of the story, in a way I agree, but we're talking about a different time in the cinema. It was a pleasure to see how the characters were formed and could only attest to the direction of King Vidor. Hedy in her role as a career woman, had the full understanding of the character. Her outstanding beauty ( even in a masculine business suit) are not to be denied. Some people have said she was not a great actress, and indeed she wasn't, but certainly a competent one, and she proved here, given the right roles. As for Robert Young, I thought he was also excellent in the main role, as were all the others. Kudos to all of them for an enjoyable two hours.

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English | German

Release Date:

13 August 1942 (Mexico) See more »

Also Known As:

Sol de Outono See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

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