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The Fallen Idol (1948)

Not Rated | | Drama, Mystery, Thriller | 25 October 1948 (UK)
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A butler working in a foreign embassy in London falls under suspicion when his wife accidentally falls to her death, the only witness being an impressionable young boy.

Director:

Carol Reed

Writers:

Graham Greene (story "The Basement Room"), Graham Greene (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 7 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Ralph Richardson ... Baines
Michèle Morgan ... Julie
Sonia Dresdel ... Mrs. Baines
Bobby Henrey ... Phillipe
Denis O'Dea ... Inspector Crowe
Jack Hawkins ... Detective Ames
Walter Fitzgerald Walter Fitzgerald ... Dr. Fenton
Dandy Nichols ... Mrs. Patterson
Joan Young Joan Young ... Mrs. Barrow
Karel Stepanek ... First Secretary
Gerard Heinz ... Ambassador
Torin Thatcher ... Policeman
James Hayter ... Perry
Geoffrey Keen ... Detective Davis (as Geoffrey Keene)
Bernard Lee ... Detective Hart
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Storyline

Philippe, a diplomat's son and good friend of Baines the butler, is confused by the complexities and evasions of adult life. He tries to keep secrets but ends up telling them. He lies to protect his friends, even though he knows he should tell the truth. He resolves not to listen to adults' stories any more when Baines is suspected of murdering his wife and no-one will listen to Philippe's vital information. Written by <P.M.Laws@education.leeds.ac.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Suspense is Almost Unbearable ... in this Four-Award Thriller !


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English | French

Release Date:

25 October 1948 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

El ídolo caído See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$9,030, 12 February 2006, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$57,745, 18 November 2016
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

London Film Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Shooting took place at Shepperton Studios, which Korda had recently purchased, and on location at a large house at 13 Belgrave Square owned by the British Red Cross and St. John medical organization, who were pleased to have the company paint the exterior and fix all the windows. Other locations used were in the same neighbourhood, except for scenes shot at the London Zoo. See more »

Goofs

When Julie leaves the tea shop and closes the shop door, there is an Open / Closed sign hanging on the glass pane of the door. But when Baines and Phillipe leave the tea shop a minute or so later, the sign is no longer there. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Baines: Good day, sir... In his office there, miss.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in L.A. Noire (2011) See more »

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User Reviews

 
excellent adaptation
4 October 2000 | by MissRosaSee all my reviews

This is an excellent adaptation of the Graham Greene novella. Richardson's performance is incredible, and the relationship between Philippe and the butler is the centerpiece of the film.

I sometimes wonder if this film would have been more successful with a different title. IMHO "The Fallen Idol" suggests a Saturday matinee shlockfest or a pretentious drawing room comedy.

This is a good companion piece to another Graham Greene novella -- also directed by Reed -- the Third Man, which is just possibly the greatest film of all time...


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