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The Next Voice You Hear... (1950)

Over a period of a week the voice of God is heard on radios all over the world.


William A. Wellman
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. See more awards »


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Stars: Shelley Winters, Ricardo Montalban, Wendell Corey


Complete credited cast:
James Whitmore ... Joe Smith, American
Nancy Reagan ... Mrs. Mary Smith (as Nancy Davis)
Gary Gray ... Johnny Smith
Lillian Bronson ... Aunt Ethel
Art Smith ... Fred Brannan
Tom D'Andrea ... Harry 'Hap' Magee
Jeff Corey ... Freddie Dibson


"Joe Smith, American" lives in a Los Angeles suburb and works at an aircraft plant. One night Joe hears a voice cut in on a radio program: "This is God. I'll be with you for the next few days." It turns out, everyone in the world listening to any radio heard the same thing. More messages come; some people react positively, others negatively. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


From the men who made "Battleground" such a memorable motion picture...Director William A. Wellman and Producer Dore Schary...comes another unusual screen adventure. See more »




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Release Date:

11 November 1950 (Australia) See more »

Also Known As:

A Voz que Vão Ouvir See more »


Box Office


$421,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


This is apparently one of only three films in which the MGM lion is not shown roaring at the start of the opening credits, probably because of the religious theme of the film. The only other known incidence of a non-roaring lion is Ben-Hur (1959), which also has a religious theme, and Westward the Women (1951). (The studio's 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) uses the illustrated lion from the MGM record label at its beginning, not a real lion, and so doesn't count.) See more »


When Joe and Johnny leave in the morning for work and school, the sun is shining on their house from the left, judging by the shadows. When Joe returns home from work, the sun and the shadows are the same. Note the shadow of Joe's house on the one next door to the right in both scenes. See more »


Joe Smith, American: Would Eddie Boyle's voice sound like God?
Johnny Smith: I don't know. I never heard God.
See more »


Spun-off from Joe Smith, American (1942) See more »

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User Reviews

Did He Sound Like Lionel Barrymore?
18 December 2013 | by utgard14See all my reviews

Wow how did I ever miss this one? As many old movies as I've seen and still I find ones that surprise me. This is a very interesting film about a voice coming on the radio nightly saying it is the voice of God. Although the voice is heard by everybody, the movie centers on one family in particular, the Smiths. In the midst of the voice drama, Mary Smith (Nancy Davis) is pregnant and there's some concern about whether she will be able to deliver safely. This and some lesser issues the family has adds to the authenticity of these characters.

A story like this could easily slip into Corn City, but thankfully it's well-written. The family are played by good actors who make the characters seem like real people and not some of the more unfortunate cardboard stereotypes that would dominate 1950s portrayals of white suburban families. James Whitmore and Nancy Davis give two of the finest performances of their careers. The actor playing their son, Gary Gray, is excellent as well. The supporting players were solid also.

We never hear the voice of God. It's written in such a way they manage to skillfully avoid that. Very clever, I think. They relay what the voice said through others. It's also a seemingly non-denominational God, so if you're worried about a faith you don't believe in forcing their beliefs on you...relax. Although it could be argued it's a Judeo-Christian God, there's nothing preachy about it. I've read some complaints about the ending. Without giving too much away, I'll try to address this. The complaints seem to be that the movie sets up a premise that deserves a big payoff. I feel like these reviewers missed the point. The payoff, in my opinion, was appropriate and meaningful: that miracles happen everyday and we should learn to appreciate them.

This is a great film with a simple but thoughtful message. A good cast, a veteran director, and intelligent writing. A true underrated gem that everyone should see.

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