Cause for Alarm - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Cause for Alarm Reviews

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Super Reviewer
½ September 5, 2010
This is a brilliant suspense film, Young gives a fantastic performance as a wife who doesn't want to be suspected for murdering her husband. Great story, I loved it.
jjnxn
Super Reviewer
½ March 3, 2010
High strung melodrama with Loretta at a fever pitch almost the whole way through. Plays more like an extended episode from an old anthology series than a feature and a rather nonsensical one at that.
October 27, 2009
A man wrapped up in himself makes a very small package

Ellen and George Jones met vicariously when George visited a hospital and faked ill for a beautiful nurse (Ellen). It is ironic that some years later, after George returns from the war, their marriage is on the rocks due to George?s heart condition. George often fakes that he is more sick than he truly is and lays horrible guilt trips on his wife. Will George?s patronizing behavior drive Ellen insane or will George cross the line and accidentally kill his wife?

?I?m going to kill you. I decided that definitely this morning.?

Tay Garnett, director of Eternally Yours, Seven Sinners, The Valley of Decision, Fast Black, Prestige (1932), China Seas, and The Flying Fool, delivers Cause for Alarm. The storyline for this picture was very detailed and well presented. The script and plot reminded me of a Hitchcock film (though the cinematography was nothing like a Hitchcock movie). The acting was magnificent and the cast contained Loretta Young (The Farmer?s Daughter) and Barry Sullivan (The Unknown Man).

?The only thing wrong with me is a double-barrel hangover.?

Cause for Alarm is part of a Thriller box set I received from my father last Christmas. This movie was only 77 minutes long; however, the film was very intricate and well written. The characters were sinister, psychotic, and smart. If you are a fan of thrillers, or Alfred Hitchcock movies, I strongly recommend seeing this picture.

?He overrated you the way he underrated me.?

Grade: B+
October 23, 2008
Why is Loretta Young's bedridden husband convinced she and her male friend are trying to kill him when she dotes on him, night and day and he is the doctor that is treating him? Such a drastic personality change would alarm me also but its never really explained so the events that follow become even more improbable. Still, not without some excitement and Young is as appealing and beautiful as ever. (I have a thing for her)
½ March 30, 2008
Susepenseful, fine acting with good direction. Great pacing keeps it interesting at all times. Well cast. A very good movie
March 10, 2007
Cause for Alarm!
Starring: Loretta Young, Barry Sullivan, Bruce Cowling, and Irving Bacon
Director: Tay Garnett


A delusional, bed-ridden man (Sullivan) writes a letter to the district attorney's office in which he claims his wife (Young) and doctor (Cowling) are plotting to kill him. As he reveals this to his wife, his weak heart gives out. She has just given the letter to the mailman, and she launches into a frantic series of attempts to recover it, before she ends up being framed by a dead man for a murder she didn't commit.

"Cause for Alarm!" could be an exciting--and even thrilling--little movie, but it is about 20 minutes too long. It drags a bit in the beginning and it sags in the middle. It needed to be more concentrated in order to fully capture the dread of the main character and to drive home the sense of ever-closer doom that is closing in on her as more and more people seem to grow suspicious of her, and she fails in her attempts to retrieve the letter.

The acting in the film is good all around (even if Young's constant hysterics get a bit tiring) and the technical aspects of the film are very well-done, particularly the lighting of the film's climactic scenes. The only problem with the film is its bloated, drawn-out script. If not for that, this could have been a Seven or Eight Tomato movie.
April 30, 2015
A bit of a ridiculous over-the-top melodrama that has Patricia Neal as a housewife whose husband dies of a heart condition, but not before he writes a letter to the D;A; implicating her trying to escalate his death! She mails it for him before he dies, not knowing the contents. But soon he dies, and she now knows what's in the letter, she tries like the dickens to try to get the letter back! A bit soap operish, and hard to believe, What, you believe everything you read?
½ April 18, 2014
Cause for Alarm is an amazing film. It is about Mr. Jones who is a invalid husband that wrongly thinks his wife and doctor are conspiring to kill him and outlines that suspicion in letter. Loretta Young and Barry Sullivan give amazing performances. The screenplay is well written. Tay Garnett did a great job directing this movie. I enjoyed watching this motion picture because of the mystery and drama. Cause for Alarm is a must see.
½ January 28, 2013
feels move like a Tv show than a feature film
Super Reviewer
½ September 5, 2010
This is a brilliant suspense film, Young gives a fantastic performance as a wife who doesn't want to be suspected for murdering her husband. Great story, I loved it.
½ September 21, 2010
Tuesday, September 21, 2010

(1951) Cause For Alarm
DRAMA/ SUSPENSE

If one can tolerate the time in which it was made when their were no cell phones etc.. One should be able to sit back and enjoy this little film which involves, paranoia, infidelity and assumptions! Because I love well acted films films that have superficial endings, this film is slight "B"

3 out of 4 stars
jjnxn
Super Reviewer
½ March 3, 2010
High strung melodrama with Loretta at a fever pitch almost the whole way through. Plays more like an extended episode from an old anthology series than a feature and a rather nonsensical one at that.
February 10, 2010
This is a first rate noir with a totally captivating performance from Loretta Young. I had never appreciated her as an actress until seeing this film.
December 9, 2009
Great movie!!! Excellent suspense thriller!!! Loretta Young was great!!!
December 9, 2009
Excellent suspense movie. Loretta Young was great!!!
October 27, 2009
A man wrapped up in himself makes a very small package

Ellen and George Jones met vicariously when George visited a hospital and faked ill for a beautiful nurse (Ellen). It is ironic that some years later, after George returns from the war, their marriage is on the rocks due to George?s heart condition. George often fakes that he is more sick than he truly is and lays horrible guilt trips on his wife. Will George?s patronizing behavior drive Ellen insane or will George cross the line and accidentally kill his wife?

?I?m going to kill you. I decided that definitely this morning.?

Tay Garnett, director of Eternally Yours, Seven Sinners, The Valley of Decision, Fast Black, Prestige (1932), China Seas, and The Flying Fool, delivers Cause for Alarm. The storyline for this picture was very detailed and well presented. The script and plot reminded me of a Hitchcock film (though the cinematography was nothing like a Hitchcock movie). The acting was magnificent and the cast contained Loretta Young (The Farmer?s Daughter) and Barry Sullivan (The Unknown Man).

?The only thing wrong with me is a double-barrel hangover.?

Cause for Alarm is part of a Thriller box set I received from my father last Christmas. This movie was only 77 minutes long; however, the film was very intricate and well written. The characters were sinister, psychotic, and smart. If you are a fan of thrillers, or Alfred Hitchcock movies, I strongly recommend seeing this picture.

?He overrated you the way he underrated me.?

Grade: B+
December 28, 2008
This film mixes camp and noir, so noir purists may not like it, but I enjoyed it. Loretta Young's character Ellen Jones does everything wrong. She dotes over her sleazy husband even when he turns maliciously unstable. She changes from doormat to victim when he accuses her and his doctor best friend (and her former suitor) of attempted murder. Jones spends the majority of the film vainly attempting to retrieve what becomes an increasingly incriminating accustation. Young starts out the picture of the perfect housewife only to descend into sweaty, hysterical desperation by film's end.
October 23, 2008
Why is Loretta Young's bedridden husband convinced she and her male friend are trying to kill him when she dotes on him, night and day and he is the doctor that is treating him? Such a drastic personality change would alarm me also but its never really explained so the events that follow become even more improbable. Still, not without some excitement and Young is as appealing and beautiful as ever. (I have a thing for her)
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