7.6/10
3,975
49 user 34 critic

Body and Soul (1947)

Approved | | Drama, Film-Noir, Sport | 9 November 1947 (USA)
A talented boxer's young career hits difficult terrain when an unethical promoter takes interest in him.

Director:

Robert Rossen

Writer:

Abraham Polonsky (original screenplay)
Reviews
Won 1 Oscar. Another 4 nominations. See more awards »

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Force of Evil (1948)
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

An unethical lawyer, with an older brother he wants to help, becomes a partner with a client in the numbers racket.

Director: Abraham Polonsky
Stars: John Garfield, Thomas Gomez, Marie Windsor
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

An otherwise moral captain of a charter boat becomes financially strapped and is drawn into illegal activities in order to keep up payments on his boat.

Director: Michael Curtiz
Stars: John Garfield, Patricia Neal, Phyllis Thaxter
The Set-Up (1949)
Crime | Film-Noir | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

Because aging boxer Bill Thompson always lost his past fights, his corrupt manager, without telling Thompson, takes bribes from a betting gangster, to ensure Thompson's pre-arranged dive-loss in the next match.

Director: Robert Wise
Stars: Robert Ryan, Audrey Totter, George Tobias
Crossfire (1947)
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A man is murdered, apparently by one of a group of demobilized soldiers he met in a bar. But which one? And why?

Director: Edward Dmytryk
Stars: Robert Young, Robert Mitchum, Robert Ryan
A Double Life (1947)
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Anthony John is an actor whose life is strongly influenced by the characters he plays. When he's playing comedy, he's the most enjoyable person in the world, but when he's playing drama, ... See full summary »

Director: George Cukor
Stars: Ronald Colman, Edmond O'Brien, Signe Hasso
Caught (1949)
Drama | Film-Noir | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

An L.A. department store ambitious young model gets her wish of marrying a millionaire but she eventually discovers that rich life isn't always a happy one.

Director: Max Ophüls
Stars: James Mason, Barbara Bel Geddes, Robert Ryan
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Generations and social classes clash in a seaside party.

Director: Erkko Kivikoski
Stars: Pertti Palo, Sirkku Grahn, Pauli Virtanen
Certificate: Passed Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

The rise and fall of Stanton Carlisle, a mentalist whose lies and deceit prove to be his downfall.

Director: Edmund Goulding
Stars: Tyrone Power, Joan Blondell, Coleen Gray
Champion (1949)
Drama | Film-Noir | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Boxer Midge Kelly rises to fame...mainly by stepping on other people.

Director: Mark Robson
Stars: Kirk Douglas, Arthur Kennedy, Marilyn Maxwell
Certificate: Passed Drama | Film-Noir | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Alison Courtland wakes up in the middle of the night on board a train, but she cannot remember how she got there. Danger and suspense ensue.

Director: Douglas Sirk
Stars: Claudette Colbert, Robert Cummings, Don Ameche
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A man is found murdered, with witnesses convinced about the woman they saw leaving his apartment. However, it becomes apparent that the woman has a twin, and finding out which one is the killer seems impossible.

Director: Robert Siodmak
Stars: Olivia de Havilland, Lew Ayres, Thomas Mitchell
Certificate: Passed Drama | Film-Noir | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

An embittered, vengeful POW stalks his former commanding officer who betrayed his men's planned escape attempt from a Nazi prison camp.

Director: Fred Zinnemann
Stars: Van Heflin, Robert Ryan, Janet Leigh
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
John Garfield ... Charley Davis
Lilli Palmer ... Peg Born
Hazel Brooks ... Alice
Anne Revere ... Anna Davis
William Conrad ... Quinn
Joseph Pevney ... Shorty Polaski
Lloyd Gough ... Roberts (as Lloyd Goff)
Canada Lee ... Ben Chaplin
Edit

Storyline

Charley Davis wins an amateur boxing match and is taken on by promoter Quinn. Charley's mother doesn't want him to fight, but when Charley's father is accidentally killed, Charley sets up a fight for money. His career blooms as he wins fight after fight, but soon an unethical promoter named Roberts begins to show an interest in Charley, and Charley finds himself faced with increasingly difficult choices. Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The story of a guy that women go for! See more »

Genres:

Drama | Film-Noir | Sport

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

9 November 1947 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

An Affair of the Heart See more »

Filming Locations:

New York City, New York, USA

Company Credits

Production Co:

Enterprise Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

A remarkable 12 members of the cast and crew had been or went on to become directors: actors William Conrad, Sid Melton, George Tyne and Joseph Pevney, writer Abraham Polonsky, cinematographer James Wong Howe, editor Robert Parrish, supervising editor Francis D. Lyon, montage director Gunther von Fritsch, art director Nathan Juran (aka Nathan Hertz), assistant director Robert Aldrich and script supervisor Don Weis. Additionally, set decorator Edward G. Boyle directed a film in the silent era. See more »

Goofs

Charley Davis's fiancee, Peg, leaves him a note and misspells his name, "Charlie." See more »

Quotes

Alice: Don't romance me, Quinn, you're getting old.
Quinn: You could use a new paint job yourself.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Jimmy Hollywood (1994) See more »

Soundtracks

Am I Blue?
Composed by Harry Akst and Grant Clarke
Performed by Hazel Brooks
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Great '40s film starring John Garfield
22 April 2008 | by blanche-2See all my reviews

John Garfield is a fighter taken over "Body and Soul" in this 1947 Faustian drama about a man who becomes too heady with success and too greedy, eventually signing on with a crooked fight promoter. Garfield is supported here by Lilli Palmer, Anne Revere, Hazel Brooks, William Conrad, Canada Lee and Lloyd Gough.

American filmmakers love boxing movies, and why not? It's a one on one brutal action sport that has inherent in it good drama because of what is at stake for people who most likely came from nothing and used their fists on the street. "Body and Soul" is no different in this regard, but it's one of the best of its kind. It also boasts an unusual and exceptionally talented cast.

The film is loaded with conflict for Charlie Davis (Garfield) - his mother (Revere) doesn't want him to fight; he's in love with Peg (Palmer) and wants to marry her but is talked into delaying it when he signs on with a new and corrupt promoter, Roberts (Gough). This will be the first of Charlie's concessions and unfortunately not the last. He fights Ben (Lee), but isn't told that the man has a blood clot and he needs to coast through only a few rounds. Instead, he pulverizes Ben, causing further brain damage, and takes him on as a trainer out of guilt. Then he's seduced by a money-hungry babe named Alice (Brooks). And on and on, until Roberts bets against him and orders him to take a dive in the championship fight he's been waiting for. (With all the films done about taking dives, anyone who bets on a fight is nuts.) Something about this movie - maybe it's the theme song, which is one of my favorites - swept me away. It's one of Garfield' most colorful performances, and the beautiful, classy Palmer is a perfect juxtaposition not only to the streetwise Charlie but the trashy Alice.

The truly transcendent role and performance is essayed by Canada Lee, a wonderful actor who died too young and had too few opportunities in film. His performance as the volatile, ill Ben was Oscar-worthy. Like Ben Carter in "Crash Dive," the fact that Lee is black does not enter into the script at all, and he is treated as an equal.

For all the rotten stereotyping done in films at that time, there were a few scripts that defied it. Lee was blacklisted and died in 1952 (the same year that John Garfield died), at 45, almost literally of a broken heart. He left a legacy of five films and some wonderful stage work, including Orson Welles' all-black Macbeth. Cast members Garfield, Lee, Anne Revere, Lloyd Gough, Art Smith, Shimen Ruskin, scriptwriter Abraham Polonsky and producer Bob Roberts would all find themselves blacklisted, and director Rossen would be threatened but admit to being a Communist and name names.

Magnificently photographed in black and white by James Wong Howe and with top direction, "Body and Soul" is an example of how wonderful film can be.


17 of 18 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 49 user reviews »

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

Stream Trending Movies With Prime Video

Enjoy a night in with these popular movies available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed