7.5/10
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35 user 23 critic

No Man of Her Own (1950)

Approved | | Drama, Film-Noir | 5 June 1950 (UK)
A pregnant woman adopts the identity of a railroad crash victim and starts a new life with the woman's wealthy in-laws, but is soon blackmailed by her devious ex.

Director:

Mitchell Leisen

Writers:

Sally Benson (screenplay), Catherine Turney (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Barbara Stanwyck ... Helen Ferguson / Patrice Harkness
John Lund ... Bill Harkness
Jane Cowl ... Mrs. Harkness
Phyllis Thaxter ... Patrice Harkness
Lyle Bettger ... Stephen 'Steve' Morley
Henry O'Neill ... Mr. Harkness
Richard Denning ... Hugh Harkness
Carole Mathews ... Irma - the blonde
Harry Antrim Harry Antrim ... Ty Winthrop
Catherine Craig ... Rosalie Baker
Esther Dale ... Josie
Milburn Stone ... Plainclothesman
Griff Barnett ... Dr. Parker
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Storyline

In a mansion in Caulfield, Illinois, Patrice Harkness and Bill Harkness are waiting for the police. Meanwhile, she recalls her life in San Francisco. The eight-month pregnant Helen Ferguson is dumped by her boyfriend, the crook Stephen 'Steve' Morley, who gives a train ticket to her to New York to stay with his new girlfriend. In the train, Helen befriends the also pregnant Patrice Harkness and her husband Hugh Harkness that are returning from Europe. When they go to the toilet, Patrice asks Helen to hold her wedding ring to avoid losing it, but there is an accident and only Helen survives. She is mistaken by the Hatkness family as being Patrice and welcomed by Mrs. Harkness, Mr. Harkness and Bill at home. Helen decides to pose of Patrice thinking in the future of her baby Hugh and the family treats her like a daughter. Out of the blue, Steve meets Helen in a club and blackmails her, promising to destroy the lives to Mr. and Mrs. Harkness. Now Helen realizes that she must kill Steve ... Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Film-Noir

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

5 June 1950 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

I Married a Dead Man See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Pictures 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

Film debut of Lyle Bettger. See more »

Goofs

When Bill gets stuck in the slush trying to turn his car around to follow Stephen Morley and Helen Ferguson whom he has passed on the road, the rear wheels spin without traction. The front tires can be seen to have chains installed. If they had been installed on the rear drive tires, he wouldn't have had a problem and the scene wouldn't have had as much tension. See more »

Quotes

Bill Harkness: [returns to car after dumping a dead body onto a moving train] He stayed on, caught on the catwalk or whatever it is, but his hat and... came off.
Helen Ferguson: Don't.
See more »

Connections

Version of J'ai épousé une ombre (1983) See more »

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User Reviews

Another mistaken identity story...but a good one...
9 July 2001 | by DoylenfSee all my reviews

Leave it to Barbara Stanwyck and John Lund to make this film noir soap opera work on every level. Stanwyck, pregnant and unwed, meets another woman and her husband on a train, a wealthy woman going home to see her family. When the train is wrecked and the woman and husband killed, Stanwyck assumes her identity since the man's parents have never met her nor even seen a photograph of her. The plot gets thicker once Stanwyck assumes the dead woman's identity.

The picture combines the suspense of a film noir with some soap opera touches but Barbara's strong performance makes it all work. John Lund, Jane Cowl, Phyllis Thaxter, Richard Denning and Lyle Bettger are all fine in support. It's all based on a Cornell Woolrich novel called "I Married A Dead Man" with the usual touches of irony found in his work.

It's one of director Mitchell Leisen's better films (he did "To Each His Own", "Hold Back the Dawn", and many other interesting films.) Absorbing and well worth watching. Not a well-known film but it's one of Stanwyck's best.


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