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A Kiss in the Dark (1949)

Not Rated | | Comedy | 26 March 1949 (USA)
An exhausted concert pianist learns he is the owner of an apartment building; after being advised to move there to rest, he becomes involved in the lives of his eccentric tenants.

Director:

Delmer Daves

Writers:

Everett Freeman (story "Cleopatra Arms"), Devery Freeman (story "Cleopatra Arms") | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
David Niven ... Eric Phillips
Jane Wyman ... Polly Haines
Victor Moore ... Horace Willoughby
Wayne Morris ... Bruce Arnold
Broderick Crawford ... Mr. Botts
Joseph Buloff ... Peter Danilo
Maria Ouspenskaya ... Mme. Karina
Curt Bois ... Hugo Schloss
Percival Vivian Percival Vivian ... Benton
Raymond Greenleaf ... Martin Soames
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Storyline

Snooty concert pianist Eric Phillips is tired and beginning to fear he's losing his talent. His condition is not helped when he discovers he's the owner of an apartment building and the tenants have a long list of grievances. His manager suggests he move into the building for a rest, an idea that initially does not appeal to Eric. He begins to feel differently as he becomes involved in the lives of his eccentric tenants, especially a pretty model named Polly. Written by Daniel Bubbeo <dbubbeo@cmp.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

26 March 1949 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Cleopatra Arms See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Warner Bros. 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

The poem that Willoughby quotes from when he first meets Phillips is "Old Ironsides" by Oliver Wendell Holmes Sr. See more »

Goofs

While in the nightclub, Jane Wyman is steadily sipping on the club's signature drink. The level of liquid continues to stay full after several sips. See more »

Quotes

Horace Willoughby: Aren't you interested in the Cleopatra Arms, Mr. Phillips?
Eric Phillips: Well, yes of course I'm interested, I mean you see Mr. Danilo, he makes all my investments.
Horace Willoughby: Well the Cleopatra Arms is hardly an investment in stone, wood and plumbing, Mr. Phillips. To 53 people, it spells home.
Eric Phillips: Oh, that's fine.
Horace Willoughby: Name any other building in Morningside Heights that has a marquee to protect its tenants in bad weather.
Eric Phillips: I'm sure I couldn't.
Horace Willoughby: I've turned down a great many people who wanted to buy the house, Mr. Phillips. But ...
[...]
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Affairs of Dobie Gillis (1953) See more »

Soundtracks

Sonata Op. 13, 'Pathétique' - I. Grave. Allegro di molto e con brio
(uncredited)
Composed by Ludwig van Beethoven
[The music is first heard when Eric enters the dining room of his apartment to eat with Peter and Soames, then played intermittently throughout the movie]
See more »

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User Reviews

 
The Cleopatra Arms
9 June 2015 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

In A Kiss In The Dark David Niven is cast as a concert pianist whose business manager Joseph Buloff handles his many diversified investments which among other things a brownstone apartment building called The Cleopatra Arms. Acting as superintendent of the place and also one of the tenants is Victor Moore. When Moore comes calling one day Niven finds out about his ownership and gets to meet some of the many tenants there including perky model Jane Wyman.

It isn't too long before Niven is involved throughly with the lives and fortunes of all the tenants there. Among others are Wyman's boyfriend Wayne Morris and an irascible Broderick Crawford who has a problem getting to sleep.

We're never told what his job is, but Crawford works a graveyard shift job and comes home and wants a little shut eye. The comedy around him centers on his irascibility due to sleep deprivation. I'm not sure how funny that is, I had sympathy for the guy. Nevertheless all the other tenants want him out and Niven finds a way to oblige.

With Victor Herbert's melody weaving in an out of the soundtrack and serving as title and theme for the film, A Kiss In The Dark is a slight but amusing comedy that in the hands of a director better suited for comedy might have worked better. Certainly David Niven has gotten worse material and managed to make it work.

A Kiss In The Dark was the farewell film of Maria Ouspenskaya who plays Niven's original piano teacher. Maria whose career went back to the Russian Art Theater was killed in a house fire the same year A Kiss In The Dark came out.

One hopes that David Niven held on to the Cleopatra Arms. What it would be worth today is incalculable. A lot more than the film.


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