The Razor's Edge (1946)




Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

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Movie Info

After several years' service with the Marines in World War II, Tyrone Power made his much anticipated return to the screen in The Razor's Edge. Power is appropriately cast as disillusioned World War I vet Larry Darrell, who returns from hostilities questioning his old values. To find himself, Larry joins several other members of the Lost Generation in Paris. He is disillusioned once more when the society deb whom he loves, Isabel Bradley (Gene Tierney), marries another for wealth and position. She returns to Larry's life to break up his romance with unstable, alcoholic Sophie MacDonald (Anne Baxter in a powerhouse Oscar-winning performance). After Sophie's death, Larry determines that the life offered him by Isabel is not to his liking, and continues seeking his true place in the scheme of things. Acting as a respite between the plot's various intrigues is Clifton Webb as a waspish social arbiter, who ends up a lonely, dying man, imperiously dictating arrangements for his own funeral. The Razor's Edge was based on the novel by W. Somerset Maugham, who appears onscreen in the form of Herbert Marshall. The film would be remade in 1984, with Bill Murray in the Tyrone Power role. This film re-teamed Tierney and Webb two years after their appearance together in Laura.
Classics , Drama , Romance
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:
Twentieth Century Fox

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Tyrone Power
as Larry Darrell
Gene Tierney
as Isabel Bradley
Clifton Webb
as Elliott Templeton
Anne Baxter
as Sophie MacDonald
John Payne
as Gray Maturin
Herbert Marshall
as Somerset Maugham
Lucile Watson
as Mrs. Louise Bradley
Frank Latimore
as Bob MacDonald
Elsa Lanchester
as Miss Keith
John Wengraf
as Joseph
Cecil Humphreys
as Holy Man
Harry Pilcer
as Specialty Dancer
Cobina Wright Sr.
as Princess Novemali
Albert Petit
as Albert
Noel Cravat
as Russian Singer
Renee Carson
as Sophie's Friend
Jean Del Val
as Police Clerk
Walter Bonn
as Butler
Marie Rabasse
as Flower Woman
Bess Flowers
as Matron
Barry Norton
as Escort of Princess
Helen Pasquelle
as Proprietress
Mayo Newhall
as Kibitzer
Stanislas Bielski
as Man at Bar
Peggy O'Neill
as Show Girl
Betty Lou Volder
as Show Girl
Mary Brewer
as Show Girl
Blanche Taylor
as Show Girl
Dorothy Abbott
as Show Girl
Marge Pemberton
as Show Girl
Richard Shaw
as Intern
Greta Granstedt
as Hospital Telephone Operator
Lillian Stanford
as Customer in Sulka's
George Sorel
as French Surete Man
Ross Tompson
as Doctor
Eddie Das
as Hindu
Hassan Khayyam
as Dr. Paul Sing
Bud Wolfe
as Corsican
Patti Behrs
as Guest
Susan Hartmann
as Daughter
Suzanne O'Connor
as Daughter
Forbes Murray
as Mr. Maturin
Jean De Briac
as Lawyer
Ray de Ravenne
as Bartender
Frances Rey
as Trollop
Shushella Shakari
as Arab Girl
Henri Letondal
as Police Inspector
Laura Stevens
as Specialty Dancer
Eugene Borden
as Sea Captain
Gale Entrekin
as Sophie's Daughter
George Davis
as Concierge
Louis Mercier
as Little Frenchman
Mme. Louise Colombet
as Concierge's Wife
Frances Ray
as Trollop
Juan Duval
as Miner
Ray DeRavenne
as Bartender
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Critic Reviews for The Razor's Edge

All Critics (6)

Edmund Goulding's version deserves crdit for trying to adapt Maugham's difficult existential movel, but Tyrone Power is miscast and the film is too melodramatic and verbose, failing to illustrate the novel's essence.

Full Review… | March 14, 2008

Goulding indulges in voluptuously lit scenes dominated by well-dressed extras, lots of carousing and booze, catty dialogue, and water fountains that upstage everybody.

Full Review… | May 15, 2005
Slant Magazine

Often pushing against Production Code limits, it is a fine execution of the novel

November 6, 2004

Glossy, effective version of the Maugham novel.

January 21, 2004
Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)

Quote not available.

February 29, 2008
Goatdog's Movies

Quote not available.

October 31, 2003
Las Vegas Review-Journal

Audience Reviews for The Razor's Edge

An absolute thought film, deep and so engrossing. This is a trancendental film, a near religious experience, I loved it. A adventuresome young man goes off to find himself and loses his socialite fiancée in the process. But when he returns 10 years later, she will stop at nothing to get him back, even though she is already married. [img][/img] It seemed to never end, I only hope the same is not for you as I kept thinking, this movie has a great ending..... or does it. [img][/img] REVIEWS by those like us: 1 "The Razor's Edge" is one of Hollywood's finest attempts to bring high-brow [ie high intelligence] material to the masses.... [ie low intelligence] audiences. (the "masses" are usually portrayed as a bunch of sheep, cattle, and other "led" things). [img][/img] 2 70% One of Zanuck's "Very Important" films, and time hasn't been kind to it. It is unwieldy, it is bloated, and there is some shameless hamfisted acting... [img][/img] 3 Deep thinking, but not so fast, it's a winner as well. ----King Kong [img][/img] NOTES: 1 Maugham begins by characterising his story as not really a novel but a thinly veiled true account. He includes himself as a minor character, a writer who drifts in and out of the lives of the major players. Larry Darrell's lifestyle is contrasted throughout the book with that of his fiancée's uncle, Elliott Templeton, an American expatriate living in Paris and a shallow and unrepentant yet generous snob. [img][/img] 2 The Razor's Edge tells the story of an American pilot traumatized by his experiences in World War I, who sets off in search of some transcendent meaning in his life. The novel is supposed to be based on the life of Guy Hague, an American mining engineer. Director: Edmund Goulding Writers: Lamar Trotti (screenplay), W. Somerset Maugham (novel Stars: Tyrone Power, Gene Tierney [img][/img] and John Payne [img][/img]

monsieur rick
monsieur rick

An okay adaptation of Maugham. It isn't a great "returning home" film but Maugham's book does present some real challenges in terms of adaptation. A modern director likely would have been able to do the trick.

John Ballantine
John Ballantine

Super Reviewer

This movie sounds very promising, but it wasn't as good as I expected. The story is very normal, very long, and gets boring eventually. It isn't a bad movie, it just isn't the emotional, dramatic, yet entertaining film it could have been.

Aj V
Aj V

Super Reviewer

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