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Sorry, Wrong Number

Sorry, Wrong Number (1948)


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Average Rating: N/A
Critic Reviews: 4
Fresh: 2 | Rotten: 2



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Average Rating: 3.6/5
User Ratings: 4,778

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Movie Info

When Lucille Fletcher took on the challenge of expanding her classic 30-minute radio suspenser Sorry, Wrong Number into an 89-minute feature film, she opted on the Citizen Kane approach, filling the plotline to the brim with revelatory flashbacks. Barbara Stanwyck stars as bedridden hypochondriac Leona Stevenson, who while trying to make a call from her bedroom telephone gets her wires crossed and inadvertently overhears two men plotting a murder. Anxiously, Leona wades through telephone-company


Drama, Horror, Mystery & Suspense, Classics

Lucille Fletcher

May 28, 2002

Watch It Now


Latest News on Sorry, Wrong Number

January 2, 2008:
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All Critics (23) | Top Critics (5) | Fresh (18) | Rotten (3) | DVD (9)

Number derives sleek hysteria from its audaciously constraining narrative strategy.

January 2, 2008 Full Review Source: Village Voice
Village Voice
Top Critic IconTop Critic

To make a movie of Lucille Fletcher's classic radio play was really to betray its best idea: that sound, not sight, is the truly paranoid sense.

January 2, 2008 Full Review Source: Chicago Reader
Chicago Reader
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Stanwyck's metamorphosis from indolence to hysteria is brilliantly executed.

June 24, 2006 Full Review Source: Time Out
Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Perhaps if you have a special interest in foul folks and morbidities, you will thrill to this Hal Wallis picture. Frankly, we squirmed -- and not from dread.

March 25, 2006 Full Review Source: New York Times
New York Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Stanwyck was too strong to play this simpering role.

October 10, 2008 Full Review Source: Combustible Celluloid
Combustible Celluloid

Both Lancaster and Stanwyck are excellent.

January 2, 2008 Full Review Source: TV Guide's Movie Guide
TV Guide's Movie Guide

Anatole Litvak's taut, gripping, highly stylized noir, based a 22 minute radio play with Agnes Moorehead, is one of the genre's very best, with a bed-ridden Stanwyck in a tour de force performance--a case study for lover of film noir.

November 4, 2007 Full Review Source: EmanuelLevy.Com

dark and terrifying

September 30, 2005
Shadows on the Wall

Vintage suspense with terrific Stanwyck, Lancaster

July 22, 2005
Las Vegas Review-Journal

Fletcher adapted her celebrated 22-minute, single-character radio play into an almost equally tense screenplay, still retaining many of the eerie sound effects.

January 15, 2005 Full Review Source: Film4

The film’s basic premise is just too compelling to resist.

November 6, 2004

A bit drawn-out, but a sensational vehicle for Stanwyck's talents

October 7, 2004
Kalamazoo Gazette

It is a carefully plotted film that leads to an extraordinary ironic climax.

March 16, 2004 Full Review Source: Apollo Guide
Apollo Guide

A good script, but it should have been filmed with the woman who made it famous on the stage, Agnes Moorehead.

July 22, 2003
Not Coming to a Theater Near You

[A] taut thriller.

March 10, 2003 Full Review Source: Austin Chronicle
Austin Chronicle

Effective suspense film.

December 11, 2002
Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)

A precursor to the far better Rear Window, but noir has seen better days.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source:

The European émigré director, Anton Litvak, shoots Stanwyck's bedroom as if it were a luxury prison.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Ozus' World Movie Reviews
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

Audience Reviews for Sorry, Wrong Number

I spent the first 86 minutes hoping Barbara Stanwyck would get what's coming to her and the last 3 minutes praying she'd escape. What a sensational screenplay (à la Lucille Fletcher)!
March 17, 2011
Randy Tippy

Super Reviewer

Probably the first great telephone themed thriller ever. I highly recommend this movie.
October 24, 2010

Super Reviewer

A bedridden invalid tying to reach her husband by telephone overhears part of a murder plot when her wire is accidentally crossed. This terrific little thriller is basically a woman-in-peril melodrama shot in the style of a film noir. It isn't difficult to pick holes in the story - indeed, the whole plot hinges on the most enormous of coincidences: that of all the telephone conversations in New York, Stanwyck should overhear this particular one - but it really is a beautifully made picture. Sol Polito's magnificent photography deserves a special mention, and some of the elaborate camera movements and seamless effects shots are still impressive today. Lancaster is great and Stanwyck's transition from haughty hypochondria to gibbering hysteria over the course of the movie is a tour de force. The bleak ending still packs a wallop but my favourite scene is the first Staten Island flashback, which besides being very mysterious has an extraordinary dreamlike texture.
October 23, 2009

Super Reviewer

Entertaining Noir, Stanwick is marvelous of course.
I've seen a couple of her movies now, in them she plays strong and dominant women, and she plays them convincingly.

In Sorry, Wrong Number she's a rich woman, who's condition doesn't allow her to leave her bed. She overhears a disturbing conversation on the phone, and as the story unravels, and she's trying to get hold of the situation, she becomes more desperate, and that seemingly strong woman is falling apart.

I love it how her hair becomes more disheveled as the story envelops.

January 25, 2009

Super Reviewer

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