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Strangers on a Train (1951)

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A psychopath forces a tennis star to comply with his theory that two strangers can get away with murder.

Director:

Alfred Hitchcock

Writers:

Raymond Chandler (screen play), Czenzi Ormonde (screen play) | 2 more credits »
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Popularity
3,561 ( 234)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Farley Granger ... Guy Haines
Ruth Roman ... Anne Morton
Robert Walker ... Bruno Antony
Leo G. Carroll ... Sen. Morton
Patricia Hitchcock ... Barbara Morton
Kasey Rogers ... Miriam Joyce Haines (as Laura Elliott)
Marion Lorne ... Mrs. Antony
Jonathan Hale ... Mr. Antony
Howard St. John ... Police Capt. Turley
John Brown John Brown ... Prof. Collins
Norma Varden ... Mrs. Cunningham
Robert Gist ... Det. Leslie Hennessey
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Storyline

Bruno Antony thinks he has the perfect plot to rid himself of his hated father, and when he meets tennis player Guy Haines on a train he thinks he's found the partner he needs to pull it off. His plan is relatively simple: Two strangers each agree to kill someone the other person wants gone. For example, Guy could kill his father and he could get rid of Guy's wife Miriam, freeing him to marry Anne Morton, the beautiful daughter of a U.S. Senator. Guy dismisses it all out of hand, but Bruno goes ahead with his half of the "bargain" and disposes of Miriam. When Guy balks, Bruno makes it clear that he will plant evidence to implicate Guy in her murder if he doesn't get rid of his father. Guy had also made some unfortunate statements about Miriam after she had refused to divorce him. It all leads the police to believe Guy is responsible for the murder, forcing him to deal with Bruno's mad ravings. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A tennis star plays a match with murder! See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for some violence and tension | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | French

Release Date:

30 June 1951 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Alfred Hitchcock's 'Strangers on a Train' See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,200,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$7,630,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Warner Bros. See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (cut) | (preview)

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Warner Brothers wanted their own stars, already under contract, cast wherever possible. In the casting of Anne Morton, Jack L. Warner got what he wanted when he assigned Ruth Roman to the project, over Sir Alfred Hitchcock's objections. Hitchcock found her "bristling" and "lacking in sex appeal" and said that she had been "foisted upon him". See more »

Goofs

When Bruno is riding on the merry-go-round, his hands change position between camera cuts. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Bruno Anthony: I beg your pardon, but aren't you Guy Haines?
See more »

Alternate Versions

There are several differences in the British version of the film, including:
  • The first encounter between Bruno and Guy on the train is longer, and features a more obvious homoerotic flirtation by Bruno;
  • In the scene where Guy sneaks out of his apartment to go to Bruno's house, a shot of him opening a drawer to get the map Bruno sketched is added;
  • The very last scene in the US version, which involves a clergyman, was deleted.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Listener: Crossed (2012) See more »

Soundtracks

The Band Played On
(1895) (uncredited)
Music by Chas. B. Ward
Lyrics by John F. Palmer
Sung by Kasey Rogers, Tommy Farrell, Roland Morris and Robert Walker while riding the merry-go-round
Played often throughout the picture
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

One of his best
15 October 2000 | by nunki7See all my reviews

This is a little known Hitchcock movie but I think it is one of his best. I like how he inserts humor into this crime drama. For example the small boy pointing a gun at the Bruno character at the carnival and the Bruno character popping his balloon with a lit cigarette. And there is the comic scene at the tennis courts where the audience in unison moves there heads back and forth following the ball except for Bruno who glances straight away at the tennis player.

Hitchcock plays suspense masterfully as in the tunnel of love sequence early in the film. We know that Bruno plans to murder the woman and we 'see' that is why he is following her into the tunnel. We hear a scream and think the deed is done when voila! the girl comes sailing out with her two admirers. Then there is one of the finest scenes in all movie history: the final scene on the carousel. Hitchcock manages suspense on many non-stop levels: the two protagonists fighting each other, a small boy who nearly falls from the ride as it whirls at tremendous speed, and the elderly man who crawls beneath the carousel to try and get at the brakes. Although I think the end of the scene was a bit over the top it was masterful to that point and I will never forget it.

I was surprised to see Ruth Roman in the lead. Usually Hitchcock has blondes for his leads, but the commentator on the TMC channel told us Hitch had to use her because she was under contract to the studio where he filmed it.

I highly recommend this obscure Hitchcock masterpiece and give 9.99 out of 10.


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