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Lost Boundaries (1949)

Not Rated | | Drama | 2 July 1949 (USA)
This story is a true account of the lives of Scott and Marsha Carter. Having graduated from medical school, Scott Carter, a fair-skinned African American, marries Marsha Mitchell and moves ... See full summary »

Director:

Alfred L. Werker

Writers:

Ormonde Dekay Jr. (additional dialogue) (as Ormonde de Kay), Maxime Furlaud (additional dialogue) | 4 more credits »
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1 win & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Beatrice Pearson ... Marcia Carter
Mel Ferrer ... Scott Mason Carter
Susan Douglas Rubes ... Shelly Carter (as Susan Douglas)
Robert A. Dunn Robert A. Dunn ... Rev. John Taylor (as Rev. Robert A. Dunn)
Richard Hylton ... Howard 'Howie' Carter
Grace Coppin Grace Coppin ... Mrs. Mitchell
Carleton Carpenter ... Andy
Seth Arnold Seth Arnold ... Clint Adams
Wendell Holmes Wendell Holmes ... Mr. Morris Mitchell
Parker Fennelly Parker Fennelly ... Alvin Tupper
Ralph Riggs Ralph Riggs ... Loren Tucker
William Greaves William Greaves ... Arthur 'Art' Cooper
Ray Saunders ... Dr. Jesse Pridham (as Rai Saunders)
Leigh Whipper Leigh Whipper ... Janitor
Morton Stevens Morton Stevens ... Dr. Walter Brackett
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Storyline

This story is a true account of the lives of Scott and Marsha Carter. Having graduated from medical school, Scott Carter, a fair-skinned African American, marries Marsha Mitchell and moves to Georgia. When he arrives at the black clinic in Georgia, he discovers that the job must inconveniently go to a Southerner. Discussions between two nurses at this clinic suggest that Scott's light skin may have some bearing on the decision not to hire him. Defeated but not conquered, Scott returns to Massachusetts to live with his in-laws until he can get employment. He tries unsuccessfully to obtain employment as an African American. Because Marsha is pregnant, Scott decides to take a job at Portsmouth Hospital, but he reluctantly does so as a white man. While there, he manages to save the life of Dr. Bracket, who encourages him to take a postion in Keenham, New Hampshire. Scott decides to continue "passing" for white. In Keenham, Dr. Scott Carter proves to be quite a success for the town. For ... Written by Broncine G. Carter

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

"But I'm white - it's true isn't it?" "No it isn't - We're All Negro!" See more »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

2 July 1949 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Den osynliga gränsen See more »

Filming Locations:

Kittery Point, Maine, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$250,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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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

Dr. Carter is shown traveling by U.S. Coast Guard boat from Portsmouth N.H. to the Isle of Shoals, about 6 nautical miles from the city harbor. However, when the boat arrives to its destination it is actually the Cape Neddick Lighthouse station (a.k.a. the Nubble) just off the coast from York, ME. The house the doctor is shown entering is the lighthouse keeper's residence. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Hollywood and the Stars: The Angry Screen (1964) See more »

Soundtracks

Guess I'm Thru With Love
(uncredited)
Music and Lyrics by Albert Johnston Jr.
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Interesting film about prejudice in the north
19 May 2006 | by blanche-2See all my reviews

"Lost Boundaries" is a 1949 film, based on the true story of a black family that passed for white in New Hampshire. The stars are Mel Ferrer, Beatrice Pearson, Richard Hylton, and Carleton Carpenter. Ferrer plays a black doctor, Scott Carter, who looks white. He wants to live as a black man, and his future wife (Pearson) who comes from a family that has always "passed" has agreed to live as a black as well. But after they marry and there's a baby on the way, and still no job, Scott decides to take a position in a white hospital. Eventually he becomes the town doctor. Before you know it, 20 years have passed, and he and his wife have never even told their children that they have black blood. This leads to complications.

Released the same year as "Pinky," "Lost Boundaries" is a very good movie about deep-seated prejudice that occurred in the north and not in its usual place, the south. Its essential problem is that it doesn't employ any black actors to play the Carters. "Pinky," a superior film, was criticized for the same reason, except that without Jeanne Crain, "Pinky" would not have been made. "Lost Boundaries" has no stars.

It is curious that the issue of "passing" seems to have piqued Hollywood's interest in the late '40s, and one wonders if World War II had something to do with it, with people venturing out of their neighborhoods and meeting others from different social positions and walks of life, all with the same goal of fighting the Axis. However, when Lena Horne went to entertain the troops in World War II, the black soldiers were behind the prisoners of war in the audience. You really wonder what was going through anyone's minds. Certainly not liberty and justice for all.


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