6.8/10
4,132
53 user 54 critic

Secret Beyond the Door... (1947)

Not Rated | | Drama, Film-Noir, Mystery | 4 March 1948 (Canada)
When a lovely woman and her new husband settle in an ancient mansion on the East coast, she discovers that he may want to kill her.

Director:

Fritz Lang

Writers:

Silvia Richards (screenplay), Rufus King (story)
Reviews
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
Joan Bennett ... Celia Lamphere
Michael Redgrave ... Mark Lamphere
Anne Revere ... Caroline Lamphere
Barbara O'Neil ... Miss Robey
Natalie Schafer ... Edith Potter
Paul Cavanagh ... Rick Barrett
Anabel Shaw ... Intellectual Sub-Deb
Rosa Rey Rosa Rey ... Paquita
James Seay ... Bob Dwight
Mark Dennis Mark Dennis ... David Lamphere
Learn more

More Like This 

Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A deranged writer murders a maid after she resists his advances. The writer engages his brother's help in hiding the body, and then watches as the brother becomes the prime suspect.

Director: Fritz Lang
Stars: Louis Hayward, Lee Bowman, Jane Wyatt
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A telephone operator ends up drunk and at the mercy of a cad in his apartment. The next morning she wakes up with a hangover and the terrible fear she may be a murderess.

Director: Fritz Lang
Stars: Anne Baxter, Richard Conte, Ann Sothern
Man Hunt (1941)
Drama | Thriller | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

British hunter Thorndike vacationing in Bavaria has Hitler in his gun sight. He is captured, beaten, left for dead, and escapes back to London where he is hounded by German agents and aided by a young woman.

Director: Fritz Lang
Stars: Walter Pidgeon, Joan Bennett, George Sanders
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Stephen Neale has just been released from an asylum during World War 2 in England when he stumbles on a deadly Nazi spy plot by accident, and tries to stop it.

Director: Fritz Lang
Stars: Ray Milland, Marjorie Reynolds, Carl Esmond
Adventure | Film-Noir | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

In WW2, the Allies race against time to persuade two nuclear scientists working for the Germans to switch sides.

Director: Fritz Lang
Stars: Gary Cooper, Robert Alda, Lilli Palmer
Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

After the murder of his fiancée, a Wyoming ranch hand sets out to find her killer.

Director: Fritz Lang
Stars: Marlene Dietrich, Arthur Kennedy, Mel Ferrer
Certificate: Passed Drama | Film-Noir | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

After the Nazi administrator of Czechoslovakia is shot, his assassin tries to elude the Gestapo and struggles with his impulse to give himself up as hostages are executed.

Director: Fritz Lang
Stars: Brian Donlevy, Walter Brennan, Anna Lee
You and Me (1938)
Crime | Film-Noir | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

An altruistic department-store owner hires ex-convicts in order to give them a second chance at life. Unfortunately, one of the convicts he hires recruits two of his fellow ex-convicts in a plan to rob the store.

Director: Fritz Lang
Stars: Sylvia Sidney, George Raft, Barton MacLane
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

A novelist aided by his future father-in-law conspires to frame himself for the murder of a burlesque dancer as part of an effort to ban capital punishment.

Director: Fritz Lang
Stars: Dana Andrews, Joan Fontaine, Sidney Blackmer
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

American soldiers stranded in the Philippines after the Japanese invasion form guerrilla bands to fight back.

Director: Fritz Lang
Stars: Tyrone Power, Micheline Presle, Tom Ewell
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

A serial killer has been killing beautiful women in New York and the new owner of a media company offers a high ranking job to the first of his senior executives who can get the earliest scoops on the case.

Director: Fritz Lang
Stars: Dana Andrews, Rhonda Fleming, George Sanders
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

When a conservative middle-aged professor engages in a minor dalliance with a femme fatale, he is plunged into a nightmarish quicksand of blackmail and murder.

Director: Fritz Lang
Stars: Edward G. Robinson, Joan Bennett, Raymond Massey

Photos

Edit

Storyline

In this Freudian version of the Bluebeard tale, a young, trust-funded New Yorker goes to Mexico on vacation before marrying an old friend whom she considers a safe choice for a husband. However, there she finds her dream man, a handsome, mysterious stranger who spots her in a crowd. In a matter of a few days they marry, honeymoon, and move to his mansion, to which he has added a wing full of rooms where famous murders took place. She discovers many secrets about the house and her husband, but what she really wants to know is what is in the room her husband always keeps locked. Written by Julie van Arcken <antigone@teleport.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Some Men Destroy What They Love Most!


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Producer and Director Fritz Lang's attempt to do his version of Rebecca (1940) was a project fraught with disaster. It ran over budget and over schedule, while Lang was at constant loggerheads with his leading lady, Joan Bennett. The first preview of the movie attracted comments like "beyond human endurance" and "it stinks". Bennett referred to the movie as "an unqualified disaster". See more »

Quotes

Mark Lamphere: You were living that fight. You soaked it all in - love, hate, the passion. You've been starved for feelings - any real feelings. I thought: 20th Century Sleeping Beauty. Wealthy American girl who has lived her life wrapped in cotton wool but she wants to wake up. Maybe she can.
Celia Lamphere: Is it as hard as all that?
Mark Lamphere: Most people are asleep.
See more »

Connections

Version of Bluebeard (1936) See more »

User Reviews

 
A distractingly-derivative story tarnishes an otherwise entertaining Fritz Lang psychological thriller
5 March 2008 | by ackstasisSee all my reviews

Fritz Lang's creepy and atmospheric psychological thriller, 'Secret Beyond the Door (1948),' faces just one major obstacle that prevents it from being a completely satisfying film experience: the story is quite obviously derived from Hitchcock's 'Rebecca (1940),' which happens to be a superior film in almost every regard. This is not to question the talents or originality of Lang, since, of course, he was already an established director before Hitchcock ever got his break, but you can just tell how much this particular work was influenced by the Master of Suspense. Borrowing elements from the then-prevalent film noir movement, and adding shades of post-marriage paranoia from the likes of 'Rebecca' and Cukor's 'Gaslight (1944),' Lang also mixes in snippets of Freudian psychoanalysis, not unlike what I witnessed last week in Hitchcock's own 'Spellbound (1945).' The final product is not without its charm, and contains various moments of precisely-articulated suspense, but you can never overcome that niggling feeling that you've seen it all done better.

Joan Bennett plays Celia, a young lady who acquires a large amount of money after her brother's death and decides to take a holiday. It is here that she meets Mark Lamphere (Michael Redgrave), a mysterious and charming gentleman who excites in Celia intense suppressed feelings of rebellion and exhilaration. Following their marriage, a hastily-decided proposition that can only lead to trouble, Celia immediately begins to notice peculiarities in her new husband, and, after her arrival at Mark's extravagant residence, she finds the dwelling haunted by the shadow of his previous wife. Mark, it seems, houses an unhealthy preoccupation with murder, and has made a hobby out of collecting entire rooms in which unspeakable atrocities of passion were committed. But what of the one room that is kept securely locked, never to be opened by anyone? Celia concludes that the secret to unlocking the inner depths of her husband's disturbed mind lies within that single room, beyond the forbidden door. Though Silvia Richards' screenplay, from a story by Rufus King, often seems too incredible to take seriously, Lang's film remains an interesting achievement, and is nothing if not entertaining.

I found the promotional material for 'Secret Beyond the Door' to be grossly misleading. The image of Joan Bennett standing before a significantly-distorted door prompted me to expect a film of extreme German Expressionism, in the same vein as 'The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari (1920).' Fritz Lang, who developed his career in Germany during the 1920s, and having often used elements of the style, would presumably have been very adept at recreating the devilishly-twisted labyrinths of the human mind, but the only scene to even approach my stylistic expectations was the appropriately ambiguous and shadowy dream sequence, in which Michael Redgrave both prosecutes and defends his malevolent tendencies in court {this particular scene may even have influenced Hitchcock's heavily-stylised courtroom trial in 'Dial M for Murder (1954)}. The remainder of the film has the appearance of a typical 1940s film noir, with suitably shadowy cinematography by Stanley Cortez, supplemented by a voice-over by Joan Bennett. Also note the similarity between the character of Miss Robey (Barbara O'Neil) and Mrs. Danvers (Judith Anderson) from 'Rebecca,' most particularly in their respective final actions in each picture.


17 of 23 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 53 user reviews »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

4 March 1948 (Canada) See more »

Also Known As:

Secret Beyond the Door See more »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$615,065 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (cut TV)

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Contribute to This Page

Free Movies and TV Shows You Can Watch Now

On IMDb TV, you can catch Hollywood hits and popular TV series at no cost. Select any poster below to play the movie, totally free!

Browse free movies and TV series



Recently Viewed