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Random Harvest (1942)

2:15 | Trailer
An amnesiac World War I veteran falls in love with a music hall star, only to suffer an accident which restores his original memories but erases his post-war life.


Mervyn LeRoy


Claudine West (screen play), George Froeschel (screen play) | 2 more credits »
Nominated for 7 Oscars. Another 2 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Ronald Colman ... Charles Rainier
Greer Garson ... Paula
Philip Dorn ... Dr. Jonathan Benet
Susan Peters ... Kitty
Henry Travers ... Dr. Sims
Reginald Owen ... 'Biffer'
Bramwell Fletcher ... Harrison
Rhys Williams ... Sam
Una O'Connor ... Tobacconist
Aubrey Mather ... Sheldon
Margaret Wycherly ... Mrs. Deventer
Arthur Margetson ... Chetwynd
Melville Cooper ... George
Alan Napier ... Julian
Jill Esmond ... Lydia


A veteran of World War I marries and settles happily into a tidy, humble life until an accident brings back memories of a former life of wealth and privilege while blocking all recollection of his existence since the war. Thus one man disappears, and another man long missing turns up and claims his vast inheritance. What does his devoted wife, whom he no longer recognizes, do? Written by Paul Emmons <pemmons@wcupa.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


ONED OF THE TEN BEST PICTURES OF 1943! (Print ad - Lubbock Morning Avalanche - Midway Theatre - Lubbock, Texas - Jan. 26, 1944 - all caps) See more »


Drama | Romance


Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


Ronald Colman fought with the British army in World War I at the battle of Ypres in 1914 where he received severe shrapnel wounds to the knee and ankle of one of his legs. He was decorated for bravery and was invalided out of the army several months later. See more »


When he asks the date, Rainier is first told that it is Thursday, and then that it is November 14, 1920. In fact, November 14, 1920 was a Sunday. See more »


Kitty Chilcet: Sometimes, especially when we've been closest, I've had the curious feeling that I remind you of someone else - someone you once knew... someone you loved as you'll never love me. I am nearly the one, Charles. But nearly isn't enough for a lifetime.
See more »


Referenced in Hollywood Hist-o-Rama: Greer Garson (1961) See more »


Swan Lake, Op 20, Act II: No. 10, Moderato
Written by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Excerpts played at ballet
See more »

User Reviews

Chosen at Random...
7 September 2006 | by axsmashcrushallthreeSee all my reviews

...I rented this and now I'd like to own it. It's just plain wonderful.

Despite being endowed with a story by the redoubtable James Hilton, this film is carried by the sheer power of its two stars. Colman (as Smithy/Rainier) and Garson (as Paula/Margaret) are at their luminous best. While the story can seem a bit implausible with too much thought, it is presented with such great truth, sincerity, and momentum that the viewer is swept along effortlessly.

Like other Hilton books and their associated film translations (such as Lost Horizon and Goodbye, Mr. Chips), this movie has an exceptionally memorable and satisfying ending. I wanted to watch the ending over and over, but I'm glad that I resisted in this case - it helped me to retain the film in perspective.

The sad note is Susan Peters, who does a great job of essaying Rainier's young admirer. Peters was paralyzed in a hunting accident not long after this film, and her career and personal life never recovered.

If you've seen and liked the other Hilton adaptations mentioned above, as well as films such as Mrs. Miniver and The Talk of the Town, then you should not miss this. Close to a 10/10.

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Release Date:

31 August 1943 (Argentina) See more »

Also Known As:

Random Harvest See more »


Box Office


$1,210,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


(Turner library print) (copyright length)

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

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