Framed (1947 film)

Last updated
Theatrical release poster
Directed by Richard Wallace
Screenplay byBen Maddow
Story byJohn Patrick
Produced byJules Schermer
Starring Glenn Ford
Cinematography Burnett Guffey
Edited byRichard Fantl
Music by Marlin Skiles
Color process Black and white
Columbia Pictures
Distributed by Columbia Pictures
Release date
  • May 25, 1947 (1947-05-25)
Running time
82 minutes
CountryUnited States

Framed is a 1947 American crime film noir directed by Richard Wallace and starring Glenn Ford. The movie is generally praised by critics as an effective crime thriller despite its low budget. [1]



Naïve mining engineer Mike Lambert (Glenn Ford) takes a temporary job driving a truck. When the brakes fail while coming down a steep highway, he steers his way through a small town and is lucky to just dent the pickup of Jeff Cunningham (Edgar Buchanan). Jeff demands Mike's employer pay for the damage, but the man refuses. Mike pays him himself. Later, the police find Mike in a bar and arrest him for reckless driving and having an expired license. A total stranger, barmaid and local tramp Paula Craig (Janis Carter), pays his $50 fine. When Mike gets drunk, Paula quits her job and finds him a hotel room. Then she meets with her conspirator, Steve Price (Barry Sullivan), and tells him, "I found him", a stranger with the same height and build as Steve.

The next day, Mike goes looking for a job. The clerk at the assay office puts him in touch with Jeff, a prospector who has found a rich vein in an old, abandoned silver mine. He offers to cut Mike in for 10%, a generous offer he quickly accepts. However, Mike makes the mistake of telling Paula all about it. When Jeff goes to get financing from Steve, the vice-president of the Empire Bank, Paula gets him to turn Jeff down.

An opportunist, Steve obtained his position through his wife Beth's father. He has embezzled $250,000 from the bank and hidden it in Paula's safety deposit box. The plan involves a fatal, fiery car crash, with Mike's body to be mistaken for Steve's.

Mike wins some money in a craps game and pays Paula back everything she spent on him. He saw her get in the car with Steve, and is very suspicious of a barmaid with much money. Paula tells him she persuaded Steve to reconsider Jeff's financing. And gullible Mike falls for the lie.

Mike, Steve and Paula drive out to see the mine. On the way back, Steve persuades Mike to stop for a drink at his place. However, when Mike goes to wash his hands, he notices a bath robe which oddly has "Paula" embroidered on it. Still not willing to open his eyes and figure out the danger he is in, Mike gets drunk and passes out. Steve drives him to the spot chosen for the accident, but Paula unexplainably knocks Steve out instead of Mike and sends the car - and Steve - over a cliff. She is able to convince Mike that he accidentally killed Steve in a drunken rage and that she staged the accident to cover for him. She begs him to run away with her. Mike then learns that the authorities know Steve was killed and Jeff has been accused of his murder. After going to see Jeff in jail, Mike suspects Paula, but has no proof. He goes to question Mrs. Woodworth, Steve's secretary, pretending to be a reporter. She confirms that a Helen Bailey called while Jeff was meeting Steve. Mrs Woodworth's suspicious husband calls the police, but Mike punches him and gets away.

He asks Paula if she knows Helen Bailey. She denies it, then heads to the bank to get the money. Mike follows her there and confronts her. She begs him to go with her, but he turns her down, and the police, tipped off by him, place her under arrest.



Critical response

Critic Mark Deming called the film, "[a] superior low-budget film noir." [2] Film critic Dennis Schwartz liked the film and wrote, "Janis Carter gives a very sexy and dangerous performance, which plays off very well against Glenn Ford's very earnest one of the good guys who can't get a lucky break. Even when he finds someone he could love she turns out to be poison, someone who was about to poison his coffee until she was reassured that he does not know something incriminating about her role in the crime. It was an entertaining B-film that ably caught how an honest but desperate man reacts after hooking up with a falsehearted woman. The good performances overcame the cheap production values and slight story." [3]

Noir analysis

Film critic Hans J. Wollstein wrote, "... Framed remains a thrilling example of 1940s film noir at its best: economically told, atmospherically photographed (at, among other places, Lake Arrowhead) and more than competently acted. Carter, especially, is a revelation and it is too bad that she was mostly used by Columbia Pictures for decorative purposes, a sort of second-tier Rita Hayworth." [4]

Related Research Articles

<i>Out of the Past</i> 1947 film directed by Jacques Tourneur

Out of the Past is a 1947 film noir directed by Jacques Tourneur and starring Robert Mitchum, Jane Greer, and Kirk Douglas. The film was adapted by Daniel Mainwaring from his 1946 novel Build My Gallows High, with uncredited revisions by Frank Fenton and James M. Cain.

<i>Against All Odds</i> (1984 film) 1984 film directed by Taylor Hackford

Against All Odds is a 1984 American romantic neo-noir thriller film directed by Taylor Hackford and starring Rachel Ward, Jeff Bridges and James Woods alongside Jane Greer, Alex Karras, Richard Widmark and Dorian Harewood. A remake of Out of the Past (1947), a film in which Greer played the femme fatale, this film's plot is about an aging American football star who is hired by a mobster to find his girlfriend.

<i>Affair in Trinidad</i> 1952 film by Vincent Sherman

Affair in Trinidad is a 1952 American film noir directed by Vincent Sherman and starring Rita Hayworth and Glenn Ford. It was produced by Hayworth's Beckworth Corporation and released by Columbia Pictures.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Glenn Ford</span> Canadian-American actor (1916–2006)

Gwyllyn Samuel Newton "Glenn" Ford was a Canadian-American actor who often portrayed ordinary men in unusual circumstances. Ford was most prominent during Hollywood's Golden Age as one of the biggest box-office draws of the 1940s, 1950s, and 1960s, who had a career that lasted more than 50 years. Although he played in many genres of movies, some of his most significant roles were in the film noirs Gilda (1946) and The Big Heat (1953), and the high school angst film Blackboard Jungle (1955). However, it was for comedies or westerns which he received acting laurels, including three Golden Globe Nominations for Best Actor in a Comedy movie, winning for Pocketful of Miracles (1961). He also played a supporting role as Clark Kent's adoptive father, Jonathan Kent, in Superman (1978).

<i>The Last Seduction</i> 1994 neo-noir erotic thriller film directed by John Dahl

The Last Seduction is a 1994 American neo-noir erotic thriller film directed by John Dahl, and features Linda Fiorentino, Peter Berg, and Bill Pullman. The film was produced by ITC Entertainment and distributed by October Films. Fiorentino's performance generated talk of an Oscar nomination, but she was ineligible because the film was shown on HBO before it was released to theatres. October Films and ITC Entertainment sued the Academy, but were unable to make Fiorentino eligible for a nomination.

<i>The Big Heat</i> 1953 American film noir crime film by Fritz Lang

The Big Heat is a 1953 American film noir crime film directed by Fritz Lang starring Glenn Ford, Gloria Grahame, and Jocelyn Brando about a cop who takes on the crime syndicate that controls his city. William P. McGivern's serial in The Saturday Evening Post, published as a novel in 1953, was the basis for the screenplay, written by former crime reporter Sydney Boehm. The film was selected for inclusion in the National Film Registry of the Library of Congress in 2011.

<i>Roadblock</i> (film) 1951 film

Roadblock is a 1951 American film noir starring Charles McGraw and Joan Dixon. The 73-minute crime thriller was shot on location in Los Angeles, California. The film was directed by Harold Daniels and the cinematography is by Nicholas Musuraca.

<i>Human Desire</i> 1954 film by Fritz Lang

Human Desire is a 1954 American film noir drama film directed by Fritz Lang and starring Glenn Ford, Gloria Grahame and Broderick Crawford. It is loosely based on Émile Zola's 1890 novel La Bête humaine. The story had been filmed twice before: La Bête humaine (1938), directed by Jean Renoir, and Die Bestie im Menschen, starring Ilka Grüning (1920).

<i>Where Danger Lives</i> 1950 film by John Farrow

Where Danger Lives is a 1950 film noir thriller directed by John Farrow and starring Robert Mitchum, Faith Domergue and Claude Rains.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Janis Carter</span> American actress (1913–1994)

Janis Carter was an American stage and film actress who performed throughout the 1940s and into the 1950s. During the mid-1950s, she began working regularly on television, co-hosting with Bud Collyer the NBC daytime game show Feather Your Nest.

Framed may refer to:

<i>Bodyguard</i> (1948 film) 1948 American semi-documentary crime film noir directed by Richard Fleischer

Bodyguard is a 1948 American film noir directed by Richard Fleischer and written by Fred Niblo Jr.and Harry Essex. It is based on a story written by George W. George and Robert Altman. The drama features Lawrence Tierney and, in her final screen appearance, Priscilla Lane.

<i>Abandoned</i> (1949 film) 1949 film by Joseph M. Newman

Abandoned is a 1949 American crime film noir directed by Joseph M. Newman and starring Dennis O'Keefe, Gale Storm and Jeff Chandler.

<i>Decoy</i> (1946 film) 1946 film by Jack Bernhard

Decoy is a 1946 American film noir. Directed by Jack Bernhard, the film stars Jean Gillie, Edward Norris, Robert Armstrong, Herbert Rudley, and Sheldon Leonard. The film was produced by Jack Bernhard and Bernard Brandt as a Jack Bernhard Production, with a screenplay by Nedrick Young, based on an original story by Stanley Rubin

<i>Mr. Soft Touch</i> 1949 film by Gordon Douglas, Henry Levin

Mr. Soft Touch is a 1949 American film noir crime film directed by Gordon Douglas and Henry Levin and starring Glenn Ford and Evelyn Keyes. The film is also known as House of Settlement.

<i>Destination Murder</i> 1950 film by Edward L. Cahn

Destination Murder is a 1950 American crime film noir directed by Edward L. Cahn. The drama features Joyce MacKenzie, Stanley Clements and Hurd Hatfield.

<i>Because of You</i> (1952 film) 1952 film by Joseph Pevney

Because of You is a 1952 American film noir drama romance film directed by Joseph Pevney and starred Loretta Young and Jeff Chandler. This film was surprising in that it showed a provocative "sexy side" of Ms. Young, quite different from her usual dignified brunette "nice girl" part.

<i>The Power of the Whistler</i> 1945 film by Lew Landers

The Power of the Whistler is a 1945 film noir thriller film based on the radio drama The Whistler. Directed by Lew Landers, the production features Richard Dix. It is the third of Columbia Pictures' eight "Whistler" films produced in the 1940s, seven starring Dix.

<i>Mysterious Intruder</i> 1946 film

Mysterious Intruder is a 1946 American mystery film noir based on the radio drama The Whistler. Directed by William Castle, the production features Richard Dix, Barton MacLane and Nina Vale. It is the fifth of Columbia Pictures' eight "Whistler" films produced in the 1940s, the first seven starring Dix.

<i>Fatale</i> (film) 2020 American thriller film by Deon Taylor

Fatale is a 2020 American thriller film directed by Deon Taylor, from a screenplay by David Loughery. It stars Hilary Swank, Michael Ealy, Mike Colter and Danny Pino. The film was theatrically released in the United States on December 18, 2020, by Lionsgate. The film received mixed reviews from critics and grossed $7 million worldwide.


  1. Framed at the American Film Institute Catalog.
  2. Deming, Mark. Framed at AllMovie.
  3. Schwartz, Dennis. Ozus' World Movie Reviews, film review, September 20, 2001; accessed: August 4, 2013.
  4. Wollstein, Hans J. Allmovie by Rovi, film review, no date. Accessed: August 4, 2013.