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The Black Curtain 

A mugging restores the memory of a man with amnesia.


Sydney Pollack


Joel Murcott (teleplay), Cornell Woolrich (novel) (as William Irish)


Episode cast overview:
Alfred Hitchcock ... Self - Host
Richard Basehart ... Phillip Townsend
Lola Albright ... Ruth Burke
Harold J. Stone ... The Taxi Driver
Gail Kobe ... Virginia
James Farentino ... Bernie
Neil Burstyn Neil Burstyn ... Chuck (as Neil Nephew)
Celia Lovsky ... Mrs. Fisher
George Mitchell ... The Druggist
Andy Romano ... The P.A.L. Officer
William Sharon William Sharon ... The Man
Joseph Trapaso Joseph Trapaso ... The Motorcycle Policeman (as Joe Trapaso)
Frank Sully ... The Drunk
Lee Philips ... Frank Carlin


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Getting mugged restores a sharp-dressed man's memory, but not that he's wanted for murder, nor that 3 years have passed. It's 1 AM, but Phil Townsend believes he's en route to his wedding. His face bursts from the front page as Dave Webber, dressed-to-kill bodyguard for a gangland mouthpiece. The compassionate taxi driver who rescued Phil from the Bowery alley, drives him to Phil's fiancée's new address, where Virginia answers the door clutching her newborn. She's terrified that her former love, now a fugitive, is there, fearing her abusive husband will assume the worst. When gentle, reliable Phil didn't show for the ceremony, the distraught young woman hired a PI to find him. Phil's horrified when Virginia tells him she's now married to the gumshoe. Written by David Stevens

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Did You Know?


Richard Basehart and Harold J Stone would later be reunited in the Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea episode Mutiny in which the former was one of the series' lead actors and the latter a guest star. See more »


[All goofs for this title are spoilers.] See more »


Version of Street of Chance (1942) See more »

User Reviews

Hitch and Woolrich: Noir brought to the TV screen
11 August 2014 | by binapiraeusSee all my reviews

Another great episode of that fascinating TV series "The Hitchcock Hour", which surprised us every time with a different kind of story, a different kind of atmosphere... Now, in this case, the story was written by Cornell Woolrich, probably one of the 'big four' of the 'hard boiled' school of crime writers together with Hammett, Cain and Chandler: he used to invent gritty and unusual tales about life in the big city - so we might well expect that this one is something like a 'TV Noir'. And it is.

The plot isn't exactly new: a man, after being hit on the head in a dark alley by some thugs, comes to and, helped by some friendly strangers like a cab driver and a drugstore owner, slowly starts to realize that he can't remember the past three years of his life! And of course, that's not enough: there's an unsolved murder involved, too...

Wonderful entertainment especially for Noir fans; a whole 'Film Noir' packed into 45 minutes of TV show length - which makes the plot all the more dense and suspenseful!

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Release Date:

15 November 1962 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Shamley Productions See more »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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