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Angel on My Shoulder (1946)

The Devil arranges for a deceased gangster to return to Earth as a well-respected judge to make up for his previous life.

Director:

Archie Mayo

Writers:

Harry Segall (original story), Harry Segall (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Paul Muni ... Eddie Kagle / Judge Frederick Parker
Anne Baxter ... Barbara Foster
Claude Rains ... Nick
Onslow Stevens ... Dr. Matt Higgins
George Cleveland ... Albert
Erskine Sanford ... Minister
Marion Martin ... Mrs. Bentley
Hardie Albright ... Smiley Williams
James Flavin ... Bellamy
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Storyline

Gangster Eddie Kagel is killed by a trusted lieutenant and finds himself in Harry Redmond Jr's special-effects Hell, where Nick/The Devil sees that he is an-exact double for a judge who Nick doesn't approve of. Eddie is agreeable to having his soul transferred to the judge's body, as it will give him a chance to avenge himself on his killer. But every action taken by Eddie (as the judge) results in good rather than evil and, to Nick's dismay, the reputation and influence of the judge is enhanced, rather than impaired by Eddie. And Eddie also falls in love with the judge's fiancée, Barbara. Even Eddie's planned revenge fails and Nick is forced to concede defeat. He returns to Hell, taking Eddie with him, after Eddie has extracted his promise that Nick will not molest the judge or Barbara in the future. Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

judge | devil | gangster | hell | love | See All (16) »

Taglines:

The strange story of Eddie Kagle... the man they couldn't keep down! See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

20 September 1946 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Me and Satan See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (Ontario) | (uncut)

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

The failure of the original copyright holder to renew the film's copyright resulted in it falling into public domain, meaning that virtually anyone could duplicate and sell a VHS/DVD copy of the film. Therefore, many of the versions of this film available on the market are either severely (and usually badly) edited and/or of extremely poor quality, having been duped from second- or third-generation (or more) copies of the film. See more »

Goofs

In the scene set on a new construction site, the trees in the background are an obvious painted backdrop. See more »

Quotes

Nick: My children, my children, you'd be lost without me.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits: This story is about Eddie Kagle who based his way of living on what Omar Khayyam once said : "Live fully while you may and reckon not the cost". See more »

Connections

Edited into Scream Greats, Vol. 2: Satanism and Witchcraft (1986) See more »

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User Reviews

 
entertaining fantasy
16 September 2006 | by blanche-2See all my reviews

Paul Muni is a dead convict brought back to earth by the devil in "Angel on my Shoulder," a 1946 film also starring Claude Rains and Anne Baxter. Muni is Eddie, a convict fresh out of jail who is killed by his partner Smiley and goes straight to you know where. Let's just say it's hot. The devil, played by Claude Rains, needs help himself. A Judge Parker is keeping too many candidates out of hell, and he sees that Eddie is a ringer for the Judge. So he arranges for Eddie to get into the judge's body as he sleeps so that he can ruin the judge's reputation and Eddie can get revenge on Smiley. But even the best-laid plans of the Devil can go astray.

During and after World War II, films dealt with psychiatry, with angels, with death, and with people returning from the dead. All of this had to do with the emotional and adjustment problems that returning soldiers had and with the loss of loved ones in countless families. "Angel on My Shoulder" is along the same idea as "Here Comes Mr. Jordan" and "A Guy Named Joe," and a close brother of "Heaven Can Wait" and the later "The Bishop's Wife." This is an excellent example of the genre, with top acting by Paul Muni, Anne Baxter, and Claude Rains. Muni is great in a Bogart type of role - he gives a performance imbued with toughness and humor as a bad guy who begins to see the other side of evil. Anne Baxter is very good as his patient but suffering fiancée, endeavoring to understand the difference in the judge's personality. As the Devil, Claude Rains is inspired casting. He's elegant, charming and manipulative, and gets plenty nervous when he sees things aren't working out as he planned.

Wonderful film, and a good chance to see the fine actor Paul Muni in a lighter role than he usually played.


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