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D.O.A. (1949)

Frank Bigelow, told he's been poisoned and has only a few days to live, tries to find out who killed him and why.

Director:

Rudolph Maté

Writers:

Russell Rouse (story and screenplay), Clarence Greene (story and screenplay) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Edmond O'Brien ... Frank Bigelow
Pamela Britton ... Paula Gibson
Luther Adler ... Majak
Beverly Garland ... Miss Foster (as Beverly Campbell)
Lynn Baggett ... Mrs. Philips
William Ching ... Halliday
Henry Hart Henry Hart ... Stanley Philips
Neville Brand ... Chester
Laurette Luez ... Marla Rakubian
Jess Kirkpatrick ... Sam
Cay Forester ... Sue (as Cay Forrester)
Frank Jaquet ... Dr. Matson (as Fred Jaquet)
Lawrence Dobkin ... Dr. Schaefer (as Larry Dobkin)
Frank Gerstle ... Dr. MacDonald
Carol Hughes ... Kitty
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Storyline

Small-town accountant Frank Bigelow goes to San Francisco for a week's fun prior to settling down with fiancée Paula. After a night on the town, he wakes up with more than just a hangover; doctors tell him he's been given a "luminous toxin" with no antidote and has, at most, a week to live! Not knowing who did it or why, Bigelow embarks on a frantic odyssey to find his own murderer. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A picture as excitingly different as its title!


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

21 April 1950 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Dead on Arrival See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Harry Popkin 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

Just for fun: Back in the 1980's, there was a short-run independent TV series that provided voice-overs with new dialog and plots for old movies. For D.O.A., Edmond O'Brien was "Rickie," Pamela Britton was "Ethel," and "Rickie" was running around California trying to find "Lucy," who was kidnapped or something. When "Rickie" finally collapsed at the end at the police station, the file was stamped D.O.A. in bold letters, with the title on the screen stating "D.O.A.: Death from Over Acting." See more »

Goofs

When Dr. MacDonald is showing the beaker that supposed to contain the luminous poison, which he just removed from Frank's blood, there is more toxin in the beaker than could possibly have been in a small blood sample; more than Frank could have drunk in the 2 small sips he takes in the bar; more than could have been dissolved in the glass. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Homicide Detective: Can I help you?
Frank Bigelow: I'd like to see the man in charge.
Homicide Detective: In here...
Frank Bigelow: I want to report a murder.
Homicide Captain: Sit down. Where was this murder committed?
Frank Bigelow: San Francisco, last night.
Homicide Captain: Who was murdered?
Frank Bigelow: I was.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The end credits read "The medical facts in this motion picture are authentic. Luminous toxin is a descriptive term for an actual poison. Technical Adviser, Edward F. Dunne, M.D." See more »

Connections

Remade as Dead on Arrival (2013) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
extremely simple yet extremely effective
30 May 2005 | by MartinHaferSee all my reviews

One of the best film noir flicks of all-time (along with The Killers). DO NOT CONFUSE THIS WITH THE REMAKE!! The film stars our unattractive hero, O'Brien, as the man who has been poisoned and is told he has only 24 hours to live. He has no idea who did it and spends almost the entire film tracking down the dirty rat that done him in. It's amazing how many wonderful noir films O'Brien appeared in over the years.

The pacing is good, acting top-rate and very noir-ish, and it manages to pull so much out of a very simple plot with minimal sets. In other words, it gives a fantastic "bang for the buck" and modern filmmakers would really benefit from learning a lesson or two from DOA.

I just checked the IMDb Top 50 Film Noir films and for some odd reason this film is not listed. How is this possible?


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