38 user 17 critic

O. Henry's Full House (1952)

Approved | | Drama | 16 October 1952 (USA)
John Steinbeck introduces a quintet of five of O. Henry's most celebrated stories from his New York Period (1902-1910) in this anthology film.


Lamar Trotti (screen play), Richard L. Breen (screen play) | 3 more credits »




Cast overview, first billed only:
Fred Allen ... Samuel Brown (segment "The Ransom of Red Chief")
Anne Baxter ... Joanna Goodwin (segment "The Last Leaf")
Jeanne Crain ... Della Young (segment "The Gift of the Magi")
Farley Granger ... Jim Young (segment "The Gift of the Magi")
Charles Laughton ... Soapy (segment "The Cop and the Anthem")
Oscar Levant ... William Smith (segment "The Ransom of Red Chief")
Marilyn Monroe ... Streetwalker (segment "The Cop and the Anthem")
Jean Peters ... Susan Goodwin (segment "The Last Leaf")
Gregory Ratoff ... Behrman (segment "The Last Leaf")
Dale Robertson ... Barney Woods (segment "The Clarion Call")
David Wayne ... Horace (segment "The Cop and the Anthem")
Richard Widmark ... Johnny Kernan (segment "The Clarion Call")
Joyce Mackenzie ... Hazel Woods (segment "The Clarion Call") (scenes deleted) (as Joyce MacKenzie)
Lee Aaker ... J.B. Dorset (segment "The Ransom of Red Chief")
Richard Rober ... Chief of Detectives (segment "The Clarion Call")


"O. Henry's Full House" is a film divided into five segments telling five tales at the beginning of the twentieth century. 1) "The Cop and the Anthem": The winter is coming and the homeless drifter Soapy wants to go to jail for three months to get shelter and food. His partner Horace suggests they look for shelter with the Salvation Army, but Soapy refuses. He forces many situations to be arrested, but he is always forgiven. When he goes to the church, there is a miracle and Soapy decides to seek a job position. Will he succeed? 2) "The Clarion Call": When a thief kills a man, the police investigators do not have any lead to follow. Police Sergeant Barney Woods sees a pen that was found in the crime scene and he seeks out a man called Johnny Kernan. He finds Johnny, who invites Barney to drink with him, and they go to his hotel room. Johnny recalls their youth, when they were friends, but Barney tells him that he must arrest him since he recognized the pen that belonged to Johnny. ... Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


A dozen top stars - five famed directors bring you the best stories of O. Henry!




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Did You Know?


Both David Wayne and Marilyn Monroe have minor roles in the segment entitiled "The Cop and The Anthem." They also starred together as each other's love interest in "We're Not Married!" (1952) and "How to Marry a Millionaire" (1953). See more »


The third segment is supposed to take place in Greenwich Village, but the street sign indicates the location is near East 19th Street. The northern border of Greenwich Village is 14th Street. See more »


Bill Peoria (segment "The Ransom of Red Chief"): He wanted to play Indian and I didn't want to.
Sam 'Slick' Brown (segment "The Ransom of Red Chief"): I see no reason why you couldn't oblige the little fella, William.
Bill Peoria (segment "The Ransom of Red Chief"): Except that he wanted to scalp me.
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Alternate Versions

The "Ransom of Red Chief" segment was deleted after the film's initial engagements, then restored in the television prints. See more »


Referenced in The Legend of Marilyn Monroe (1965) See more »


Bringing in the Sheaves
(1880) (uncredited)
Music by George A. Minor
Lyrics by Knowles Shaw
Played and sung by The Bowery Mission Band
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User Reviews

Every segment a winner
4 April 2005 | by LCShackleySee all my reviews

I first saw this movie on TV as a child in the 1960s, and never watched it again until now (2005), but it's strange how many characters and even specific shots lingered in my mind all those years. This is a gem that has something for everyone: sentimentality, humor, pathos, and loads of good performances. "The Cop and the Anthem" is probably the most tightly written of them all, with subtle touches of humor throughout (besides the most obvious gags). If I had to single out one performer who delighted me the most it would be David Wayne, doing a twitchy down-and-outer playing off of Laughton's haughty tramp (especially just having seen him play a totally different character in ADAM'S RIB just a week ago).

As an old thespian friend of mine would say, "The Last Leaf" could bring a tear to a glass eye. And in "Red Chief," Fred Allen and Oscar Levant make a strange but fun team.

Not having seen Richard Widmark in the other movie mentioned in reviewer's comments, I could only think how much he reminded me of Frank Gorshin in various roles he played in the 60s. Watch this segment again and think "Frank."

Your whole family will like this movie. Why doesn't someone bring it out nice and crispy clean on DVD?

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Frequently Asked Questions

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Release Date:

16 October 1952 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Baghdad on the Subway See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Twentieth Century Fox See more »
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Technical Specs


| (cut)

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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