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Shock (1946)

Passed | | Film-Noir, Thriller | 1 February 1946 (USA)
A psychologically distraught woman is committed to a private sanitarium by the man she witnessed commit a murder.

Director:

Alfred L. Werker (as Alfred Werker)

Writers:

Eugene Ling (screenplay), Albert DeMond (story) (as Albert deMond) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Vincent Price ... Dr. Richard Cross
Lynn Bari ... Nurse Elaine Jordan
Frank Latimore ... Lt. Paul Stewart
Anabel Shaw ... Mrs. Janet Stewart
Stephen Dunne ... Dr. Stevens (as Michael Dunne)
Reed Hadley ... District Attorney O'Neill
Renee Carson Renee Carson ... Miss Hatfield - Head Nurse
Charles Trowbridge ... Dr. H.J. Harvey
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Storyline

Dr. Cross, a psychiatrist, is treating a young woman, Janet Stewart, who is in a catatonic state, brought on when she heard loud arguing, went to her window and saw a man strike his wife with a candlestick and kill her. As she comes out of her shock, she recognizes Dr. Cross as the killer. He takes her to his sanitarium and is urged by his nurse/lover, Elaine Jordan, to give Janet an overdose of insulin. Can he bring himself to murder Janet in cold blood? Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

He never dreamed what it would all lead to...and she didn't care !


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

1 February 1946 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

El susto See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$375,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Twentieth Century Fox See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

20th Century Fox released an official version of this film as part of its giant Film noir series with a much improved picture than the lapsed copyrighted one have. See more »

Goofs

Insulin is injected subcutaneously. The needle Dr. Cross uses is for intravenous use. See more »

Quotes

Lt. Paul Stewart: Doctor, the important thing is - what can you do for her?
Dr. Richard Cross: It's hard for a doctor to make promises. We can only do our best.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Vincent Price: Renaissance Man (2007) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Suspenseful film, rises above potboiler status
13 January 2005 | by BrandtSponsellerSee all my reviews

While Janet Stewart (Anabel Shaw) is waiting for her husband, Paul (Frank Latimore), whom she hasn't seen in over two years (he's been at war and at one point was thought to be dead), to meet her at a hotel, she witnesses an argument and then a murder in another room. She goes into shock, and is taken to a mental hospital for treatment. Unfortunately, Richard Cross (Vincent Price), the doctor treating her, is the same man she witnessed committing murder.

Although somewhat of a potboiler and a bit short on running time per today's standards, Shock is a tightly scripted, directed and acted thriller. As usual, Price is at the top of his game here, and any Price fans who haven't seen this film yet will want to check it out. The rest of the cast is also fantastic, and Shaw particularly stands out when she's on screen (which is not as often as we might like, but given the story, a necessity). Suspense is maintained throughout the film--even in the minor scenes. There was even a fair amount of tension in the opening when Janet Stewart is first checking into the hotel.

My score is 9 out of 10. I only subtracted one point for the ending, which came too soon and a bit too abruptly for my tastes. However, given typical studio restrictions during this era, when it was mandatory that the "bad guys" get their just deserts, the ending is also admirable for its relative ambiguity. It is almost similar in style to Stanley Kubrick's lauded ending of The Killing (1956), which also tried its best to circumvent the just deserts conclusions, though Shock predates the Kubrick film by 10 years.


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