6.9/10
2,422
37 user 24 critic

The Canterville Ghost (1944)

Passed | | Comedy, Fantasy | August 1944 (USA)
Trailer
1:47 | Trailer
The descendent of a ghost imprisoned for cowardice hopes to free the spirit by displaying courage when under duress.

Directors:

Jules Dassin, Norman Z. McLeod (uncredited)

Writers:

Oscar Wilde (story "The Canterville Ghost"), Edwin Blum (screenplay) (as Edwin Harvey Blum)
Reviews
1 win. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Charles Laughton ... Sir Simon de Canterville / The Ghost
Robert Young ... Cuffy Williams
Margaret O'Brien ... Lady Jessica de Canterville
William Gargan ... Sergeant Benson
Reginald Owen ... Lord Canterville
Rags Ragland ... Big Harry (as 'Rags' Ragland)
Una O'Connor ... Mrs. Umney
Donald Stuart ... Sir Valentine Williams
Elisabeth Risdon ... Mrs. Polverdine
Frank Faylen ... Lieutenant Kane
Lumsden Hare ... Mr. Potts
Mike Mazurki ... Metropolus
William Moss William Moss ... Hector
Bobby Readick Bobby Readick ... Eddie
Marc Cramer ... Bugsy McDougle
Learn more

More Like This 

Certificate: Passed Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

1940. For the better part of the war thus far, New York news correspondent John Davis and his wife Nora Davis have been in the hot spots of western Europe, including Rotterdam and much of ... See full summary »

Directors: W.S. Van Dyke, Herbert Kline
Stars: Robert Young, Laraine Day, Fay Bainter
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Romance | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

An oafish soldier receives a shirt but disregards the letter inside sent by a lovelorn secretary, prompting his bumbling friend to impersonate him in order to win her heart.

Director: Jules Dassin
Stars: Marsha Hunt, John Carroll, Hume Cronyn
Comedy | Fantasy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.3/10 X  

In the depths of a British legend, the ghost of Eleanor Canterville is condemned to haunt the castle of his family and to scare away any inhabitant. It fulfills this task perfectly, helped ... See full summary »

Director: Yann Samuell
Stars: Audrey Fleurot, Michaël Youn, Michèle Laroque
Ghost of Canterville (TV Movie 2005)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.9/10 X  

The poor ghost of Sir Simon Canterville has been roaming his castle searching in vain for a brave descendant who will release him from the Canterville curse by performing a brave deed. An ... See full summary »

Director: Isabel Kleefeld
Stars: Klaus J. Behrendt, Saskia Vester, Armin Rohde
Crime | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A fugitive negotiates a 5-year sentence for the theft of half-million dollar worth of bonds but takes a short trip before surrendering, while suspecting that a con-woman, a cop and a former crime-partner are after his hidden bonds.

Director: Jules Dassin
Stars: Lucille Ball, John Hodiak, Lloyd Nolan
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Members of a well-to-do small community become worried when it is revealed that one of their maids is writing a telling exposé.

Director: Jules Dassin
Stars: Marsha Hunt, Richard Carlson, Marjorie Main
Young Ideas (1943)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

Academy Award-winner* Mary Astor (The Maltese Falcon) stars as a widow whose grown children try to break up her romance with a college professor in this charming, offbeat comedy directed by... See full summary »

Director: Jules Dassin
Stars: Susan Peters, Herbert Marshall, Mary Astor
Comedy | Fantasy | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A haunted Scottish castle is dismantled and transported to Florida, bringing the family ghost along with it.

Director: René Clair
Stars: Robert Donat, Jean Parker, Eugene Pallette
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A mild-mannered school-teacher in a Nazi-occupied town during W.W.II finds himself being torn between collaboration and resistance.

Director: Jean Renoir
Stars: Charles Laughton, Maureen O'Hara, George Sanders
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

An orphaned young boy is guided by his great-grandfather and strives to go to university to become a doctor. However, the boy's harsh grandfather stands in his way.

Director: Victor Saville
Stars: Charles Coburn, Tom Drake, Beverly Tyler
Mystery | Thriller | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

An astute businesswoman is completely devoted to her faithless husband, who must kill her to carry on with her pretty young niece. It turns out that the dead don't die so easily.

Director: Gordon Hessler
Stars: Gary Merrill, Jane Merrow, Georgina Cookson
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

With a war on and most men being drafted, Howard Oil Supply Company has no salesmen left. So daughter Jean hits the road and does not make one sale. She finally gets one tentative sale with... See full summary »

Director: Vincent Sherman
Stars: Ida Lupino, Sydney Greenstreet, William Prince
Edit

Storyline

In the 1600s, cowardly Sir Simon of Canterville flees a duel and seeks solace in the family castle. His ashamed father seals him in the room where he is hiding and dooms him to life as a ghost until one of his descendants performs a brave deed. Simon believes he may be saved when he meets Cuffy Williams, an American kinsman stationed with a troop of soldiers at the castle in 1943. Will this blood relative save the family honor, or will his blood be as yellow as the rest of the Cantervilles? Written by Daniel Bubbeo <dbubbeo@cmp.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The New Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Hit! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Fantasy

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The bomb that Cuffy and the ghost want to dispose of was known as a "blockbuster". So-called because it was so powerful it could demolish more than a dozen buildings i.e. a city block. See more »

Goofs

The ghost when more corporeal (not transparent) casts a shadow in several scenes. See more »

Quotes

Sir Simon de Canterville: Excuse me, I really must gibber at the oriole window.
See more »

Connections

Version of Kinder-Vileyskoe prividenie (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

Bless 'em All
(uncredited)
Written by Fred Godfrey (1917)
Revised lyrics by Jimmy Hughes and Frank Lake (1940)
Additional lyrics by Al Stillman (1941)
Sung a cappella by the soldiers
See more »

User Reviews

 
Safe and inoffensive fun.
19 April 2008 | by hitchcockthelegendSee all my reviews

Sir Simon of Canterville gets roped into fighting a duel for his cousin, realising he faces certain death he flees the field awash with cowardice. His father is so enraged as to this stain on the family honour - he walls Simon up in the castle without food and water until death does strike him down. He is doomed to haunt the Canterville castle until a fellow member of the family can commit an act of bravery and thus lift the cowardly stain that has besmirched the Canterville name.

Doesn't sound much like a comedy does it!, but it is, and a very amiable one at that. Loosely based on Oscar Wilde's story of the same name, The Canterville Ghost benefits from a couple of charming performances from Charles Laughton as Simon, and from a young Margaret O'Brien as Lady Jessica de Canterville. Laughton is clearly enjoying himself as the ghost, heavy on the "woe is me" theatrics coupled with gusto comedy, it's a very enjoyable performance from the big man. O'Brien is here enjoying being the center of attention and she positively lights up every scene she is in with youthful exuberance. The story follows a well trodden path to the rewarding ending, but it's a fun ride getting there regardless. Things really pick up a pace once a platoon of American soldiers are billeted at the castle and we are introduced to Cuffy Williams (Robert Young), a descendant Canterville of course, but he himself is showing a line in cowardice, so we are then left wondering if Cuffy can indeed show bravery and thus free Simon from his ghostly duties?. 7/10


17 of 18 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 37 user reviews »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

August 1944 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Canterville Ghost See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(copyright length)

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Contribute to This Page

Your Next Binge Watch Awaits

Looking for something to watch? Check out IMDb's "What to Watch" series to find out what's really worth watching.



Recently Viewed