Movie: Random Harvest – 1942

One of my friends is quite gifted in his critical knowledge of cinematography. My friend, who is my vintage, refuses to use the Internet for various reasons.

He described to me a movie he has once seen only part of on PBS. I was able to locate the movie rather quickly by a google search on : pbs shell shock amnesia wife

Synopsis of Random Harvest

At the close of World War I, shell-shocked amnesia victim Ronald Colman is sequestered in a London sanitarium; with no identity and no next of kin, he has nowhere else to go. Unable to stand the loneliness, Colman wanders into the streets, then stumbles into a music hall, where he is befriended by good-natured entertainer Greer Garson. That Colman and Garson fall in love and marry should surprise no one; what is surprising, at least to Colman, is that he discovers that he has a talent for writing. Three years pass: while in Liverpool to sell one of his stories, Colman is struck down by a speeding car. When he comes to, he has gained full memory of his true identity; alas, he has completely forgotten both Garson and their child. Returning to his well-to-do relatives, Colman takes over the family business. Having lost her child, the distraught Garson seeks out the missing Colman. Psychiatrist Philip Dorn helps Garson, advising her that to reveal her identity may prove a fatal shock for her husband. To stay near him all the same, Garson takes a job as Colman’s secretary. “Strangely” attracted to Garson, Colman falls in love with her all over again. Will there be yet another memory lapse? Under normal circumstances, we wouldn’t believe a minute of Random Harvest, but the magic spell woven by the stars and by author James Hilton (Lost Horizon, Goodbye Mr. Chips etc.) transforms the wildly incredible into the wholly credible (just one quibble: isn’t Colman a bit long in tooth as a “young” World War I veteran?) The film was one of MGM’s biggest hits in 1942–indeed, one of the biggest in the studio’s history. ~ Hal Erickson, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time:
126 mins

Complete Cast of Random Harvest

* Ronald Colman – Charles Rainer/John “Smithy” Smith
* Philip Dorn – Dr. Jonathan Benet
* Henry Travers – Dr. Sims
* Reginald Owen – “Bitter”
* Rhys Williams – Sam
* Melville Cooper – George
* Aubrey Mather – Sheldon
* Alan Napier – Julian
* Marta Linden – Jill, Kitty’s Mother
* Norma Varden – Julia
* Ivan Simpson – Vicar
* C. Montague Shaw – Julia’s Husband
* Pax Walker – Sheila
* Madge Crane – Mrs. Sims
* Elizabeth Risdon – Mrs. Lloyd
* Arthur Space – Trempitt
* Lowden Adams – Clerk
* Peter Lawford – Bit Part
* Reginald Sheffield – Judge
* Kay Medford – Wife
* Helena Phillips Evans – Ella, the Charwoman
* Sam Harris – Member of the House of Commons

* Greer Garson – Paula Ranier
* Susan Peters – Kitty
* Edmund Gwenn – Prime Minister
* Bramwell Fletcher – Harrison
* Una O’Connor – Tobacconist
* Margaret Wycherly – Mrs. Deventer
* Arthur Margetson – Chetwynd
* Jill Esmond – Lydia Chetwynd
* Ann Richards – Bridget
* David Cavendish – Henry Chilcotte
* Marie de Becker – Vicar’s Wife
* Henry Daniell – Heavy Man
* Arthur Shields – Chemist
* Terry Kilburn – Boy
* Ian Wolfe – Registrar
* Leonard Mudie – Old Man
* Hilda Plowright – Nurse
* Olive Blakeney – Woman
* Frederic Worlock – Paula’s Lawyer
* Cyril McLaglen – Policeman
* Lumsden Hare – Sir John
* George Kirby – Conductor

Mervyn LeRoy

Claudine West, George Froeschel, Arthur Wimperis

Sidney Franklin, Sidney Franklin

Theatrical MPAA Rating:
NR(Suitable for Children)

Random Harvest Awards

* 1942 – Film Daily – 10 Best Films
* 1942 – National Board of Review – Best Acting
* 1942 – National Board of Review – Best Acting

I did not realize that James Hilton has written such books as “Lost Horizon” and “Goodbye, Mr. Chips”

Books by James Hilton
Catherine Herself (1920)
Storm Passage (1922)
The Passionate Year (1923? 24?)
The Meadows of the Moon (1926)
Terry (1927?)
Three Loves Had Margaret
And Now Good-Bye (1931)
Murder At School (1931)
Was It Murder?
Ill Wind
Nine Short Stories (1932) (in Avon Modern Short Story Monthly No. 5)
Rage in Heaven (1932)
Lost Horizon (1933)
Good-Bye, Mr. Chips (1933/34)
Without Armour (1933)
We Are Not Alone (1937)
To You, Mr. Chips (1938)
Random Harvest (1941)
The Story of Dr. Wassell (1944)
So Well Remembered (1945)
Nothing So Strange (1947)
Morning Journey (1951)
Time and Time Again (1953)

Allegedly one may watch the entire movie “Random Harvest” from a link at this page

but I have not tried that as yet.

Tags: , , ,

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: