Nisha Rathode

Fear in the Night (1947 film)

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Director  Maxwell Shane
Music director  Rudy Schrager
Language  English
6.5/10 IMDb

Genre  Crime, Drama, Film-Noir
Screenplay  Maxwell Shane
Country  United States
Fear in the Night (1947 film) movie poster
Release date  April 18, 1947 (1947-04-18) (United States)
Based on  the story "Nightmare"  by Cornell Woolrich
Writer  Cornell Woolrich (story), Maxwell Shane (written for the screen by)
Cast  Paul Kelly (Cliff Herlihy), DeForest Kelley (Vince Grayson), Ann Doran (Lil Herlihy), Kay Scott (Betty Winters), Charles Victor (Captain Warner), Robert Emmett Keane (Lewis Belknap, aka Harry Byrd)
Similar movies  The Big Sleep, The Asphalt Jungle, Detour, The Third Man, Notorious, They Live by Night

Fear in the night 1947 film noir drama

Fear in the Night is a 1947 film noir crime film directed by Maxwell Shane starring Paul Kelly and DeForest Kelley (in his film debut). It is based on the Cornell Woolrich story "And So to Death" (retitled '"Nightmare" in 1943). Woolrich is credited under pen name William Irish. The film was remade by the same director in 1956 with the title Nightmare this time starring Edward G. Robinson playing the cop and Kevin McCarthy.


Fear in the Night (1947 film) movie scenes

Fear in the night


Fear in the Night (1947 film) wwwgstaticcomtvthumbdvdboxart41860p41860d

Bank teller Vince Grayson (DeForest Kelley) dreams that he stabs a man in an octagonal room of mirrors and locks the body in a closet. When he wakes up, he discovers marks on his throat, a strange key and a button in his pocket, and blood on his cuff. Cliff Herlihy (Paul Kelly), his police officer brother-in-law, tries to convince him it was just a dream.

Fear in the Night (1947 film) Fear in the Night 1947

A few days later, while trying to find cover from the rain, the pair finds themselves taking shelter in the strange house from Vince's dream. They discover that the police found two bodies in the house, one in the mirrored room and one run over in the driveway. Mrs. Belknap, who was run over by a car, gave the police a description matching Vince before she died.

Fear in the Night (1947 film) Fear in the Night 1947 Who was the guy Why did you kill him

At first Vince is hopeful that he is innocent because he does not know how to drive, but he recognizes the victims from his dream. Overcome with remorse, he attempts suicide, but is rescued by Cliff. The detective uncovers clues that point to an evil hypnotist (Robert Emmett Keane) manipulating Vince. They realize that the hypnotist is actually Mr. Belknap in disguise and try to trap him by pretending that Vince wants hush money.

Fear in the Night (1947 film) Fear in the Night 1947 IMDb

Belknap puts Vince under hypnosis and tries to get him to drown himself. Cliff rescues him from the lake and Mr. Belknap is killed in a car accident as he is trying to evade the police. It is implied that Vince will be acquitted of all charges since he killed the man in the mirrored room in self-defense.


Fear in the Night (1947 film) Fear in the Night 1947
  • Paul Kelly as Cliff Herlihy
  • DeForest Kelley as Vince Grayson
  • Ann Doran as Lil Herlihy
  • Kay Scott as Betty Winters
  • Charles Victor as Captain Warner
  • Robert Emmett Keane as Lewis Belknap, aka Harry Byrd
  • Jeff York as Deputy Torrence
  • Critical response

    Fear in the Night (1947 film) Fear in the Night 1947 Film Noir of the Week

    When the film was released the film critic for The New York Times panned the film, writing, "Fear in the Night, a minor shocker which opened at the Rialto yesterday, is just about as ridiculous as any that comes in this line ... It is not only silly but rather dull. DeForest Kelley is dopey as the fall guy and Paul Kelly is brisk as his detective friend."

    Fear in the Night (1947 film) Fear in the Night 1947

    More recently, film critic Dennis Schwartz was more positive and liked the film, writing, "An excellent low-budget psychological thriller directed and written by Maxwell Shane that is based on the story "Nightmare" by Cornell Woolrich. Cinematographer Greenhalgh's shadowy black and white photography gives it a film noir look ... The taut pulp story, dreamy atmospheric settings and brooding mood throughout, all serve the film well. The crisp acting was just right. DeForest Kelley, in his debut performance, does a fine job as the innocent victim."


    Fear in the Night (1947 film) Wikipedia
    Fear in the Night (1947 film) IMDbFear in the Night (1947 film)

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