7.5/10
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100 user 40 critic

The Strange Love of Martha Ivers (1946)

A man is reunited with his childhood friend and her husband, who believe he knows the truth about the death of her rich aunt years earlier.

Director:

Lewis Milestone

Writers:

Robert Rossen (screenplay), John Patrick (from an original story by) (as Jack Patrick)
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Barbara Stanwyck ... Martha Ivers
Van Heflin ... Sam Masterson
Lizabeth Scott ... Toni Marachek
Kirk Douglas ... Walter O'Neil
Judith Anderson ... Mrs. Ivers
Roman Bohnen ... Mr. O'Neil
Darryl Hickman ... Sam - As a Child
Janis Wilson ... Martha - As a Child
Ann Doran ... Bobbi St. John
Frank Orth ... Hotel Clerk
James Flavin ... Detective #1
Mickey Kuhn ... Walter - As a Child
Charles D. Brown Charles D. Brown ... McCarthy
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Storyline

In 1928, young heiress Martha Ivers fails to run off with friend Sam Masterson, and is involved in fatal events. Years later, Sam returns to find Martha the power behind Iverstown and married to "good boy" Walter O'Neil, now district attorney. At first, Sam is more interested in displaced blonde Toni Marachek than in his boyhood friends, but they draw him into a convoluted web of plotting and cross-purposes. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Whisper HER NAME See more »


Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

13 September 1946 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Love Lies Bleeding See more »

Filming Locations:

Los Angeles, California, USA See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Hal Wallis Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Director Lewis Milestone is quoted in an article in the Los Angeles Sun Mirror on December 8, 1946 as having said that he would never make another picture with producer Hal B. Wallis because Wallis wanted to re-shoot scenes in this film for more close-ups of Lizabeth Scott. Milestone reportedly told Wallis to shoot them himself, so he did. See more »

Goofs

Walter O'Neil reads and partially crumples the note handed to him in his office. When he sits down behind his desk a second later, the note is perfectly flat. See more »

Quotes

Toni Marachek: [offering a hotel room Gideon's Bible] I'll loan you a book for a couple of cigarettes, if you don't mind what kind of a book it is.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits prologue: IVERSTOWN 1928. See more »

Connections

Featured in Biography: Kirk Douglas: A Lust for Life (1997) See more »

Soundtracks

Strange Love
(uncredited)
Music by Miklós Rózsa
Lyrics by Edward Heyman
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
You can't go home again
10 December 2005 | by blanche-2See all my reviews

Due to a car accident, Van Heflin has to return to his home town in "The Strange Love of Martha Ivers," and walks into a world full of blackmail and murder. 18 years earlier, he ran away from home the night his friend Martha's aunt was murdered while Martha, her friend Walter, and Walter's father were in the Ivers house. Now he returns to find Walter (Kirk Douglas) is the drunken district attorney and married to Martha (Barbara Stanwyck), the richest woman in town - Iverstown is, after all, named after her family. Though Martha has never fallen out of love with Heflin, her husband thinks he's there to blackmail them because, though a man was hung for killing her aunt, it was Martha who did so while her aunt (Judith Anderson) was beating Martha's cat. In my opinion, she deserved to die. D.A. Douglas uses a troubled woman Heflin has met, played by sultry Lizabeth Scott, to attempt to drive Heflin out of town. But it doesn't work.

A top-notch cast carries this intriguing story along. Heflin was evidently considered a matinée idol in his day - in both this and Possessed, women swoon over him. My mother loved him, so he must have had something. He was a good actor, with a smoothness and an engaging smile. And he plays the part with a certain ambiguousness - up to a certain point, you're not sure if he knows Stanwyck's guilty secret or not. Stanwyck, beautiful and elegant as the troubled Martha, does a great job playing a twisted sister if there ever was one (though I still don't blame her for killing that miserable Judith Anderson). Douglas, in an early performance, holds his own well as the pathetic, wimpy Walter. Lizabeth Scott is lovely, sad, and vulnerable as Toni, the woman Heflin meets while in town.

Very good mid-'40s film.


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