Alpha Video

Cause For Alarm

Starring: Barry Sullivan & Loretta Young Director: Tay Garnett
A paranoid madman inexplicably dies and leaves behind a note falsely accusing his wife of poisoning him.
Cause For Alarm
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Rating 4.2
17 ratings
Movie on IMDb
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DVD Features:

  • Rated: Not Rated
  • Run Time: 1 hours, 17 minutes
  • Video: Black & White
  • Encoding: Region 0 (Worldwide)
  • Released:
  • Originally Released: 1951
  • Label: Alpha Video
  • Audio:
    • (unspecified) - English

Performers, Cast and Crew:

Starring &
Performer: , , , , , , , &
Directed by
Edited by
Screenwriting by &
Produced by
Director of Photography:

Description by

Madness lurks in the upstairs bedroom of homemaker Ellen Brown's seemingly calm, well-manicured suburban home. There, her husband George descends into a dark world of dementia brought on by a heart condition. Ellen's life becomes a living hell as she tries to keep their marriage alive, accommodating his every need. Convinced that his pretty wife and his doctor are plotting to kill him, George concocts a list of evidence along with a letter for the district attorney disclosing his suspicions. Unknowingly, she mails the incriminating letter. During a fit of rage, George pulls a gun, but is killed in the ensuing struggle. When Ellen realizes the content of the letter she has mailed, she must find a way to retrieve it or face a murder charge.

Cause For Alarm!, dark and sinister in its theme, paints a powerful portrait of paranoia and fear in the unusually bright and cheerful setting of middle-class America. Tay Garnett, who also directed The Postman Always Rings Twice in 1946, delivers a taut suspenseful tale that is a dramatic tour-de-force for actress Loretta Young (in a role originally considered for Judy Garland). Although a successful box-office film for MGM at the time, Cause For Alarm! was one of Young's last movies before she launched a successful television career. Young and director Garnett would reunite for her series, "A Letter For Loretta," which earned her three Emmy awards. Look for a cameo performance by Our Gang member Carl "Alfalfa" Switzer.

Product Description:

A former US serviceman recovering from illness (Barry Sullivan) forms an unfounded suspicion that his wife (Loretta Young) is having an affair and decides to frame her. After planting evidence that she and her lover were planning on poisoning him, he dies of other causes, leaving her in a predicament that appears to implicate her in foul play from any angle. Taut pacing, fine performances, and a great plot make this a classic thriller.

Plot Keywords:

Betrayal | Injustice | Theatrical Release | Vintage

Movie Lovers' Ratings & Reviews:

Customer Rating: Rating 4.2
Based on 17 ratings.
Write an online review to share your thoughts with other customers.
Rating 4.5 cause for alarm Movie Lover: from portland, OR US -- December, 12, 2005

Very well written and played movie. This movie literally almost had me forwarding ahead throught he suspense to see the ending quicker. I really was on the edge of my seat,although at one point I was calling Loretta Young an idiot. Great movie for all

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Product Info:

  • Sales Rank: 8,512
  • UPC: 089218481696
  • Shipping Weight: 0.27/lbs (approx)
  • International Shipping: 1 item

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Film Collectors & Archivists: Alpha Video is actively looking for rare and unusual pre-1943 motion pictures, in good condition, from Monogram, PRC, Tiffany, Chesterfield, and other independent studios for release on DVD. We are also interested in TV shows from the early 1950s. Share your passion for films with a large audience. Let us know what you have.