6.1/10
1,235
34 user 20 critic

A Woman's Secret (1949)

Approved | | Drama, Film-Noir, Mystery | 7 February 1949 (USA)
Failed singer Marian Washburn confesses she shot her friend, successful singer Susan Caldwell, but her manager Luke Jordan and Detective Fowler doubt her story and cannot establish a reasonable motive.

Director:

Nicholas Ray

Writers:

Herman J. Mankiewicz (screen play), Vicki Baum (novel)
Reviews

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A woman's attempt to appear innocent and sweet clashes with her lover who sees through her act and the wealthy man she tries to trick into marrying her.

Director: Nicholas Ray
Stars: Mel Ferrer, Joan Fontaine, Robert Ryan
Macao (1952)
Certificate: Passed Adventure | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Nick Cochran, an American in exile in Macao, has a chance to restore his name by helping capture an international crime lord. Undercover, can he mislead the bad guys and still woo the handsome singer/petty crook, Julie Benson?

Directors: Josef von Sternberg, Nicholas Ray
Stars: Robert Mitchum, Jane Russell, William Bendix
Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5/10 X  

A Texas oil millionaire, after failing to secure oil lands in Argentina, seeks out a famous race horse in Buenos Aires and order his representative to buy the nag at any price. Ellison has ... See full summary »

Directors: Leslie Goodwins, Jack Hively
Stars: Maureen O'Hara, James Ellison, Alberto Vila
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

An attorney defends a hoodlum of murder, using the oppressiveness of the slums to appeal to the court.

Director: Nicholas Ray
Stars: Humphrey Bogart, John Derek, George Macready
Certificate: Passed Adventure | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

After being wronged by the Caribbean authorities, a Dutch captain turns pirate to wage war.

Director: Frank Borzage
Stars: Paul Henreid, Maureen O'Hara, Walter Slezak
Certificate: Passed Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

Early one morning in a New York City park, a passerby walking his dog discovers who ends up being a Jane Doe shot dead in the front passenger seat of a parked car. Homicide Chief Captain ... See full summary »

Director: Edward Montagne
Stars: John Miles, Patricia Barry, Walter Kinsella
Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Rough city cop Jim Wilson is disciplined by his captain and is sent upstate, to a snowy mountain town, to help the local sheriff solve a murder case.

Directors: Nicholas Ray, Ida Lupino
Stars: Ida Lupino, Robert Ryan, Ward Bond
Hot Blood (1956)
Drama | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

Stephen Torino (Wilde), who is tricked by his brother Marco (Adler) into an arranged marriage with tempestuous Annie Caldash (Russell). Annie is willing to give the union a go, but Torino wants none of it.

Director: Nicholas Ray
Stars: Jane Russell, Cornel Wilde, Luther Adler
Drama | Film-Noir | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

In 1940, a former prisoner is determined to find the killer of the New York Police Lt. who helped him escape from a Nazi torture camp in Spain.

Director: Richard Wallace
Stars: John Garfield, Maureen O'Hara, Walter Slezak
The Threat (1949)
Certificate: Passed Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Vicious hood 'Red' Kluger escapes from Folsom Prison and carries through on his threats to the detective who arrested him and the D.A. who got him convicted.

Director: Felix E. Feist
Stars: Michael O'Shea, Virginia Grey, Charles McGraw
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

The saga of the Hatfield-and-McCoy feud is romanticized in Samuel Goldwyn's Roseanna McCoy. Newcomer Joan Evans stars as the title character, whose elopement with Johnse Hatfield serves to ... See full summary »

Directors: Irving Reis, Nicholas Ray
Stars: Farley Granger, Joan Evans, Charles Bickford
Lured (1947)
Crime | Film-Noir | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

A serial killer in London is murdering young women he meets through the personal columns of newspapers. He announces each of his murders to the police by sending them a cryptic poem. After ... See full summary »

Director: Douglas Sirk
Stars: George Sanders, Lucille Ball, Charles Coburn
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
Maureen O'Hara ... Marian Washburn
Melvyn Douglas ... Luke Jordan
Gloria Grahame ... Susan Caldwell
Bill Williams ... Lee Crenshaw
Victor Jory ... Brook Matthews
Mary Philips ... Mary Fowler
Jay C. Flippen ... Jim Fowler
Robert Warwick ... Roberts
Curt Conway Curt Conway ... Doctor
Ann Shoemaker ... Mrs. Matthews
Virginia Farmer ... Mollie
Ellen Corby ... Nurse
Emory Parnell ... Desk Sergeant
Edit

Storyline

Susan is in the hospital with a bullet near her heart. Marian has told the police that she shot Susan in a rage as Susan was giving up singing. Marian and Luke found Susan when she was a failure. A singer with a limited range, she was a diamond in the rough which Marian and Luke taught how to walk, dress and talk. With the singing lessons, Marian had hoped that she would have the career that Marian would have had if she had not lost her voice. Even though Susan is a scatterbrain girl, Luke does not believe that Marian would have been capable of shooting her. Luke hopes that Detective Fowler will be able to find out the truth and free Marian. Written by Tony Fontana <tony.fontana@spacebbs.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

I had to stop her ... at any cost ... that's why I pulled the trigger !


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | French

Release Date:

7 February 1949 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Mortgage on Life See more »

Filming Locations:

Hollywood, California, USA

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$853,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

RKO Radio Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Completed in early 1948, but not released until nearly a year later in 1949 during the tumultuous ownership of RKO by Howard Hughes. See more »

Goofs

Characters refer to the Luger as a revolver when it is actually a semi-automatic pistol. See more »

Quotes

Jim Fowler: I'll admit mister that I've heard stories that make less sense than that. They happen to be true.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening and closing credits are displayed on a page of sheet music. See more »

Soundtracks

Let Him Go, Let Him Tarry
(uncredited)
Traditional
Sung by Maureen O'Hara
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Lesser Ray
13 October 2011 | by dougdoepkeSee all my reviews

No need to recap the plot, which I couldn't do anyway. In fact, just what the screenplay is aiming at may be the movie's biggest secret. Is it a mystery—well no, since early on the camera shows Marian (O'Hara) pulling the trigger. Is it a noir—hardly, since the atmosphere is pretty conventional. Is it a love story (a Ray specialty)—well maybe, except who loves whom is not always clear. Sure, a movie doesn't have to be pigeon-holed to be good. But the trouble here is that Secret is simply too muddled to fit anywhere, and that's despite a luminescent turn from the incomparable Gloria Grahame.

Director Ray was especially expert at getting triumphs from love story actresses—Cathy O'Donnell, Allene Roberts, Natalie Wood, et al. No wonder Grahame fell for him in real life. However, critics are right: Jory and Douglas are both a shade too old (circa, 50) for 20-something O'Hara and Grahame. Plus, pity poor Bill Williams whose one-note, unnecessary part suggests he wandered onto the wrong set. Then there's the ill- advised comedy relief from the cop's wife that erupts half-way through as if some studio higher-up suddenly intervened.

Hard to believe cult director Ray had anything to do with this muddle. Clearly, he only went through the motions, probably as a result of an unwanted studio assignment (RKO). Too bad. But, I doubt anyone could have salvaged such confused material.


12 of 16 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 34 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page



Recently Viewed