6.5/10
8,707
94 user 34 critic

The Paradine Case (1947)

Approved | | Crime, Drama, Romance | 26 August 1949 (Sweden)
A happily married London barrister falls in love with the accused poisoner he is defending.

Director:

Writers:

(from the novel by), (adaptation) | 2 more credits »
Reviews

On Disc

at Amazon

Our Favorite TV and Movie Lawyers

Get ready for "Goliath" Season 2 with a look at some of our favorite lawyers from the big and small screens.

Check out more of our favorite on-screen lawyers

Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Crime | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A young gentleman goes to Australia where he reunites with his now married childhood sweetheart, only to find out she has become an alcoholic and harbors dark secrets.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: Ingrid Bergman, Joseph Cotten, Michael Wilding
Stage Fright (1950)
Film-Noir | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A struggling actress tries to help a friend prove his innocence when he's accused of murdering the husband of a high society entertainer.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: Marlene Dietrich, Jane Wyman, Richard Todd
I Confess (1953)
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A priest who comes under suspicion for murder cannot clear his name without breaking the seal of the confessional.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: Montgomery Clift, Anne Baxter, Karl Malden
Jamaica Inn (1939)
Adventure | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

In Cornwall in 1819, a young woman discovers that she's living near a gang of criminals who arrange shipwrecks for profit.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: Maureen O'Hara, Robert Newton, Charles Laughton
Spellbound (1945)
Certificate: Passed Film-Noir | Mystery | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A psychiatrist protects the identity of an amnesia patient accused of murder while attempting to recover his memory.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: Ingrid Bergman, Gregory Peck, Michael Chekhov
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A couple who have been married for three years are horrified to learn that their marriage is not legally valid.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: Carole Lombard, Robert Montgomery, Gene Raymond
The Wrong Man (1956)
Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

In 1953, an innocent man named Christopher Emmanuel "Manny" Balestrero is arrested after being mistaken for an armed robber.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: Henry Fonda, Vera Miles, Anthony Quayle
Saboteur (1942)
Thriller | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Aircraft factory worker Barry Kane goes on the run across the United States when he is wrongly accused of starting a fire that killed his best friend.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: Priscilla Lane, Robert Cummings, Otto Kruger
Torn Curtain (1966)
Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

An American scientist publicly defects to East Germany as part of a cloak and dagger mission to find the solution for a formula resin before planning an escape back to the West.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: Paul Newman, Julie Andrews, Lila Kedrova
Topaz (1969)
Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A French intelligence agent becomes embroiled in the Cold War politics first with uncovering the events leading up to the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis, and then back to France to break up an international Russian spy ring.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: Frederick Stafford, Dany Robin, John Vernon
Secret Agent (1936)
Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

After three British agents are assigned to assassinate a mysterious German spy during World War I, two of them become ambivalent when their duty to the mission conflicts with their consciences.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: John Gielgud, Madeleine Carroll, Robert Young
Crime | Mystery | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Man on the run from a murder charge enlists a beautiful stranger who must put herself at risk for his cause.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: Nova Pilbeam, Derrick De Marney, Percy Marmont
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
... Anthony Keane
... Gay Keane
... Judge Lord Thomas Horfield
... Sir Simon Flaquer
... Lady Sophie Horfield
... Andre Latour
... Maddalena Anna Paradine (as Valli)
... Sir Joseph
... Judy Flaquer
... Innkeeper
Edit

Storyline

Highly successful London barrister Anthony Keane takes on the case of Italian Maddalena Paradine who is accused of poisoning her blind military hero husband. Keane comes increasingly under her spell, threatening both his marriage and his career. Written by Jeremy Perkins {J-26}

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

26 August 1949 (Sweden)  »

Also Known As:

Alfred Hitchcock's The Paradine Case  »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$4,258,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (re-release) | (original) | (edited television) | (re-release)

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

While Alfred Hitchcock liked the actors, he felt that Gregory Peck, Alida Valli and Louis Jourdan were unsuited to their roles. David O. Selznick asserted his power as studio head to insist that Hitchcock use them. See more »

Goofs

When Keane goes to the Paradine house in Cumberland, he walks over to Mrs. Paradine's piano. On the piano we see close-up of a page of music called Appassionata Op. 69 by Francesco Ceruomo. But in the next scene, when we see Keane passing by the piano, none of the three pages on it have any title at the top, only music, showing they are subsequent pages of that piece, and not the first one, as shown in the close-up. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Lakin: Dinner will be ready in fifteen minutes, mum.
Mrs. Maddalena Anna Paradine: Thank you, Lakin.
See more »

Crazy Credits

In opening credits scroll below Ethel Barrymore: "and two new / Selznick Stars / Louis Jourdan / and / Valli". Alida Valli's name is in script form, and Jourdan had been playing leading roles in French films for several years before making "The Paradine Case". See more »

Connections

Referenced in Hollywood Hist-o-Rama: Gregory Peck (1962) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Hitchcock's Courtroom Fizzle
17 December 2005 | by See all my reviews

There are some films that are forever lost that one wishes still existed: the complete GREED and THE MAGNIFICENT AMBERSONS (Welles final cut)for examples. In the cinema of Alfred Hitchcock, THE PARADINE CASE as he originally shot would have been of great interest. Whether it would have been better is another matter. THE PARADINE CASE is generally conceded as among Hitchcock's lesser films. It's most interesting parts of the performances of the leads (except for Alida Valli, who is quite dull), and the famous sequence of the portrait of Valli whose eyes seem to follow the camera (standing in for Gregory Peck/Anthony Keane) as it passes from one room to the next.

Hitchcock told Francois Truffaut that he felt the casting was wrong. He wanted Greta Garbo for Mrs. Paradine (but Selznick had Alida Valli signed up). He wanted Ronald Colman or Laurence Olivier as Keane (but Selznick had Gregory Peck signed up). He did not want Louis Jourdan as LaTour, but wanted Robert Newton. Again Selznick said no. As a result of our general respect for Hitchcock the suspense film artist we sympathize with his comments, and dismiss Selznick as a bullying producer who destroyed a masterpiece. I seriously question this view.

First of all, David Selznick (for most of his career as a producer) was way ahead of the majority of such Hollywood figures because of his taste and ability. Anyone who could create GONE WITH THE WIND, David COPPERFIELD, SINCE YOU WENT AWAY, and other high caliber movies is not one to dismiss so cavalierly. Most of the films he did with Hitchcock (whom he brought to Hollywood in 1939) were very good films: REBECCA, SUSPICION, SHADOW OF A DOUBT, LIFEBOAT, FOREIGN CORRESPONDENT - they were not crappy. Secondly, he was aware of difficulties in getting performers: Olivier was working in England in 1948. Colman was working mostly at MGM, but was a bit too old for the role. And Peck was not an unknown talent: He had worked with Hitchcock already. As for Garbo, she had been in retirement for six years, and there was no sign she was interested in a film come-back.

The Jourdan - Newton problem is another matter. LaTour, in the film, is Colonel Paradine's loyal batman, now a valet and groom on the estate. Mrs. Paradine has made a play for his affections, and he has rejected them out of loyalty to his master. Hitchcock felt that Robert Newton, with his physical appearance, would have looked more like a man who worked in the mire of a stable than Louis Jourdan did, although as Jourdan remained the Colonel's personal servant that seemed a minor casting point in favor of Newton. Hitchcock also skirted the issue (soon to be handled in ROPE, STRANGERS ON A TRAIN, and NORTH BY NORTHWEST) of a homosexual relationship between his characters. LaTour was supposed to be more openly close to the Colonel in Hitchcock's opinion. But it was a 1948 film - how close was the relationship supposed to be? Furthermore, Selznick as producer would be aware of one defect regarding Newton not found in Hitchcock's account to Truffaut: Newton's alcoholism. Given the size of Newton's benders he was a poor risk in most film acting roles (no matter how available he was). Not so with Louis Jourdan. The film was brought in under 93 days, and that record would not have been possible if Newton had been in the cast and kept getting drunk. As for the homosexual relationship, it never is fleshed at all in the film. But would a 1948 audience have been willing to accept that? I don't think so.

The supporting players, particularly Ann Todd, Charles Laughton as the sadistic Mr. Justice Lord Hawfield, and Ethel Barrymore as Lady Hawfield, gave good accounts of themselves in the film, especially Laughton as the Judge who takes out his frustrations with Mrs. Keane (ANN TODD) to wreck her husband's case. His best scene, where he compares a walnut to a human brain sums up the character's beastliness.

I think that what Hitchcock fans fail to notice here is that it is Hitch's only real courtroom film. While his characters face hearings and sentencing in court (like in the start of NOTORIOUS), they rarely are shown being tried. I CONFESS is an exception - and the bulk of the film is not a trial. Here the bulk of the film is the trial of the anti-heroine Mrs. Paradine. It is not typical Hitchcock, and fails to fascinate the audience. The highpoint is the verbal clashes between Laughton and Peck (sometimes assisted by Leo G. Carroll as the prosecutor), Jourdan's collapse in the witness box when Keane attacks him for secretly betraying his master with the defendant, and Valli's final condemnation of Keane in court. But the circumstances and the dialog do not fascinate the viewers. Compare the way the trial in THE PARADINE CASE compares with those in Billy Wilder's WITNESS FOR THE PROSECUTION, and in TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD. Laughton's Sir Wilfred Robarts enlivens the film, and his tactics in attacking Torin Thatcher's case for the prosecution of Tyrone Power are solid and interesting in the former. Gregory Peck's Atticus Finch, in defending Brock Peters on a rape charge in a segregated, bigoted South, are cutting and sensible. The key is the script - both of those films have better scripts, based on better writings (Agatha Christie and Harper Lee) than the Robert Hitchens novel.

One can bemoan the loss of the three hour version or the 119 minute version that we lack now, but if it was anything as dull as the slow moving courtroom sequences of the currently extant film, I doubt that any improvement would have appeared.


37 of 51 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 94 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Trending TV Series With Prime Video

Explore popular and recently added TV series available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed