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20 user 6 critic

Lady in the Dark (1944)

Approved | | Drama, Musical, Romance | 10 February 1944 (USA)
Ginger Rogers, "Allure" magazines editor-in-chief, suffers from headaches and continuos daydreams and undergoes psychoanalysis to determine why.

Director:

Mitchell Leisen

Writers:

Frances Goodrich (screen play), Albert Hackett (screen play) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
Nominated for 3 Oscars. See more awards »

Photos

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Ginger Rogers ... Liza Elliott
Ray Milland ... Charley Johnson
Warner Baxter ... Kendall Nesbitt
Jon Hall ... Randy Curtis
Barry Sullivan ... Dr. Brooks
Mischa Auer ... Russell Paxton
Phyllis Brooks ... Allison DuBois
Mary Philips ... Maggie Grant
Edward Fielding ... Dr. Carlton
Don Loper Don Loper ... Adams
Mary Parker ... Miss Parker
Catherine Craig ... Miss Foster
Marietta Canty ... Martha
Virginia Farmer ... Miss Edwards
Fay Helm ... Miss Bowers
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Storyline

Ginger Rogers, "Allure" magazines editor-in-chief, suffers from headaches and continuos daydreams and undergoes psychoanalysis to determine why.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The minx in mink with a yen for men!

Genres:

Drama | Musical | Romance

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

10 February 1944 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A Mulher que não Sabia Amar See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Paramount paid $285,000 for the film rights to the stage hit, a record at the time. $115,000 to producer Sam Harris, $85,000 to librettist Moss Hart and $42,500 each to composer Kurt Weill and lyricist Ira Gershwin. See more »

Quotes

Russell Paxton: "This is the end! The absolute end!"
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Choose Me (1984) See more »

Soundtracks

The Saga of Jenny
(uncredited)
Music by Kurt Weill
Lyrics by Ira Gershwin
Performed by Ginger Rogers and Chorus
See more »

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User Reviews

 
What's bothering Liza?
26 February 2015 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

Even with 3 Oscar nominations Lady In The Dark was by all accounts a grave disappointment for the movie going public. For one thing the film did not retain Kurt Weill's and Ira Gershwin's score save for the two primary numbers My Ship and The Saga Of Jenny. But worse than that, Gertrude Lawrence was not brought to Hollywood to make the film. Lady In The Dark more than most was a personal star vehicle and rumor has it that that particular star was furious at being left out. Listen to her recordings of those two songs I mentioned and you'll agree with me. Ginger Rogers the star in the film was ruthlessly compared with Gertrude Lawrence and not for the better. Sad because Ginger does do a decent job in the part.

Lady In The Dark is about psychoanalysis and the subject is the lead character Liza Elliott successful career woman and editor of Allure Magazine. But she's in analysis now because of persistent headaches and recurring daydreams that the medical profession can't find a reason for. So she's on Dr. Barry Sullivan's couch for sessions while trying to put out her magazine.

Her problem seems to be the men in her life and they include assistant editor Ray Milland, publisher Warner Baxter who just can't quite break up his marriage for her, and visiting movie star Jon Hall. So Ginger Rogers like her role model Jenny takes the whole to finally make up her mind.

The strength of Lady In The Dark is the elaborate sets used for the various dream/fantasy sequences from the show. No surprise here because director Mitchell Leisen started out as a set designer. Art Direction was one of the nominations Lady In The Dark got as well as for musical scoring and color cinematography. It might have won one or two, but in 1944 Paramount was putting its big publicity guns out for Going My Way because the studio meal ticket Bing Crosby was the star.

Lady In The Dark is also a great example of the gay cinema in some very repressive years. Mischa Auer plays the flamboyant fashion photographer Russell Paxton in a role Danny Kaye originated on Broadway. See how Auer effervesces over the person of Jon Hall when his film star character comes to the offices. On Broadway Kaye had the song Tschaikowsky interpolated into the score for him. It was written by his wife Sylvia Fine. Auer doesn't do that, but in every other way he repeats Kaye's characterization with I'm sure a few touches of his own.

Fans of both Gertrude Lawrence and the music of Kurt Weill were disappointed then and still today.


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