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The Canterville Ghost (1944) - movie overview

The Canterville Ghost (1944)

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Plot Description

MPAA Rating

Running Time
1 hour, 36 minutes

Country USA

Studio MGM

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Other Titles
• The Canterville Ghost
• Das Gespenst von Canterville (1951)

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Genre: Fantasy, Comedy, Ghosts, World War II, Supernatural, Gore, Military, Fantasy, Haunted House

Plot: In Jule Dassin's adaptation of Oscar Wild's THE CANTERVILLE GHOST, a group of American soldiers waiting to fight in World War II are billeted in Canterville Castle. They are amused when Lady de Canterville, their hostess, instead of being the expected dowager, turns out to be seven-year-old Jessica (Margaret O'Brien). They are also amused to discover that the house is haunted. When Jessica's ancestor, Simon de Canterville (Charles Laughton), ran away from a duel, he was walled up in an alcove, his ghost doomed to roam the corridors of the ancestral home. The soldiers refuse to be intimidated by the ghost. Then, one of them, Cuffy Williams (Robert Young), discovers that he too is a de Canterville, and Jessica thinks he might be able to save the family honor.

In 1887, Oscar Wilde wrote his story about the Canterville ghost, telling of an American family who annoy the ghost by refusing to believe in him. In updating the setting of the tale to wartime Britain, screenwriter Edwin Harvey Blum and director Jules Dassin radically rework Wilde's story. The result is an amusing tale, with Margaret O'Brien as the grave young heroine, Young as the charming American struggling with the Canterville curse, and Laughton having a great time as the weary ghost.

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 Directed by
Jules Dassin
Topkapi, The Naked City, Brute Force
 Written by
Oscar Wilde
An Ideal Husband, The Importance of Being Earnest, The Picture of Dorian Gray
Edwin Blum
Gung Ho, The Boogie Man Will Get You
Charles Laughton
Spartacus, Witness for the Prosecution, Mutiny on the Bounty
Robert Young
Secret Agent, Crossfire, The Mortal Storm
Margaret O'Brien
Meet Me in St. Louis, Jane Eyre, Little Women
William Gargan
The Bells of St. Mary's, You Only Live Once, Rain
Reginald Owen
Mary Poppins, Bedknobs and Broomsticks, Mrs. Miniver
Rags Ragland
Anchors Aweigh, Abbott and Costello in Hollywood, Girl Crazy
Una O'Connor
The Adventures of Robin Hood, Witness for the Prosecution, Bride of Frankenstein
 Music By
George Bassman
A Day at the Races, The Postman Always Rings Twice, Ride the High Country

 Recommended Movies
Movie Title Agree Disagree
Blithe Spirit (1945)
I Married a Witch (1942)
Here Comes Mr. Jordan (1941)
Ghost Breakers, The (1940)
Time of Their Lives, The (1946)

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