7.2/10
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The Blue Dahlia (1946)

Not Rated | | Crime, Film-Noir, Mystery | 1 June 1946 (UK)
An ex-bomber pilot is suspected of murdering his unfaithful wife.

Director:

George Marshall
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Alan Ladd ... Johnny Morrison
Veronica Lake ... Joyce Harwood
William Bendix ... Buzz Wanchek
Howard Da Silva ... Eddie Harwood
Doris Dowling ... Helen Morrison
Tom Powers ... Capt. Hendrickson
Hugh Beaumont ... George Copeland
Howard Freeman ... Corelli
Don Costello ... Leo
Will Wright ... 'Dad' Newell
Frank Faylen ... Man Recommending a Motel
Walter Sande ... Heath
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Storyline

When Johnny comes home from the navy he finds his wife Helen kissing her substitute boyfriend Eddie, the owner of the Blue Dahlia nightclub. Helen admits her drunkenness caused their son's death. He pulls a gun on her but decides she's not worth it. Later, Helen is found dead and Johnny is the prime suspect. Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Double dame trouble! Double-barrelled action! See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

1 June 1946 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Die blaue Dahlie See more »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$2,700,000
See more on IMDbPro »

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

Just after the fight scene between Alan Ladd and the two thugs who kidnapped him, one of the thugs is seen soaking his broken leg in a round tub. That wasn't in the script; the actor had actually broken his leg filming the fight and, without consulting screenwriter Raymond Chandler, director George Marshall rewrote the script to have the character break his leg as well. See more »

Goofs

After arriving home, Morrison is asked what he flew, and he says a Liberator. Whilst the Navy did fly two variations of the B-24 Liberator, they were used mainly for anti-sub/anti-ship and reconnaissance work. The later PB4Y-2 version, such as he would have flown towards the end of the war, was called a Privateer, not a Liberator. It also had a crew of eleven, whereas Morrison's crew was only three. The Grumman Avenger was a widely-used Navy bomber that had a crew of three, so it was likely that is what his character had flown. See more »

Quotes

Corelli, motel operator: You still want that room?
Johnny Morrison: [sarcastically] You sure nobody's dead in it?
Corelli, motel operator: [leading him to the room] Right back this way. You live in San Francisco?
Johnny Morrison: [laconically] Yeah, when I'm there.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Los Angeles Plays Itself (2003) See more »

Soundtracks

Ac-Cent-Tchu-Ate the Positive
(1944) (uncredited)
Music by Harold Arlen
Lyrics by Johnny Mercer
Sung by party guests
See more »

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User Reviews

Interesting, if Slightly Dated, Film Noir
27 June 2001 | by Snow LeopardSee all my reviews

"The Blue Dahlia" is a slightly dated but interesting film noir. It has a pretty good mystery story that, while a bit too reliant on coincidence, also has some creative aspects. The cast is pretty good, and the atmosphere is classic 40's film noir.

Alan Ladd plays a World War II pilot who comes home only to find an unfaithful, unpleasant, drunken wife waiting for him. She has made a mess of her life while he was away, and it is no surprise that she soon turns up murdered. The husband is suspected, and is pursued by the police, with a mysterious blonde (Veronica Lake) also taking an unexplained interest in him. Ladd and Lake are pretty good in the leads, and William Bendix is very good in a difficult role as Ladd's shell-shocked pal. The film goes pretty heavy on the "noir" atmosphere, and now seems just a little dated or static, but the atmosphere does fit well with the story.

This will primarily be of interest to those who already like films of the era, but for those who do, this is an interesting story that you'll want to see.


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