Don't Bother To Knock

Don't Bother To Knock

Facts and Figures

Run time: 76 mins

In Theaters: Friday 1st August 1952

Distributed by: Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment

Production compaines: Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation

Reviews 4 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 100%
Fresh: 8

IMDB: 6.9 / 10

Cast & Crew


Starring: as Jed Towers, as Nell Forbes, as Lyn Lesley, as Bunny Jones, as Rochelle, as Ruth Jones, Elisha Cook, Jr. as Eddie Forbes, as Peter Jones, as Mrs. Ballew, as Joe the Bartender (as Willis B. Bouchey), as Mr. Ballew, Emmett Vogan as the toastmaster, Harry Bartell as the bellboy, Gloria Blondell as Janie the café photographer, Harry Bartell as a bellboy, as a bellboy, Dick Cogan as the bell captain, Charles J. Conrad as Speaker, Tom Daly as a man in the elevator, Bess Flowers as a woman at the awards dinner, Charles Flynn as uniformed cop at end, as the doorman, Grace Hayle as Mrs. McMurdock, Marjorie Holliday as the phone operator, David McMahon as uniformed cop at end, as a maid, Harold Miller as a banquet guest, Vic Perrin as an elevator operator, Vic Perrin as Pat the hotel detective, Olan Soule as the bespectacled desk clerk

Don't Bother To Knock Review

This obscure thriller marks the screen debut of an unrecognizably young Anne Bancroft, playing second fiddle to Marilyn Monroe in her first role as a "serious actress."

Sure enough, Monroe proves she can act, and pretty seriously. While she appears to be her usual ditzy blonde at first, the film slowly proves itself to be something else entirely.

The action in Don't Bother to Knock takes place entirely in a fairly small hotel, focusing on Monroe's Nell, niece of the elevator operator who is recommended to babysit for a couple attending a banquet downstairs. Across the courtyard is Jed (Richard Widmark), who's recently been dumped by the hotel's lounge singer (Bancroft) and who figures he'll put the moves on Nell instead. During their encounter, she proves herself to be anything but innocent.

Creepy and effective, the film's smallness enhances its mood considerably. Monroe's performance isn't flawless, but it's good enough, aided by Widmark's poor sap and an impressive supporting cast -- most of whom deliver deadpan one-liners throughout the movie. Roy Baker appears to have had a very small budget but does good work the tools in his arsenal. At only 76 minutes long, it's a quick number but a fairly satisfying one.

Based on the novel Mischief. Featured as part of the restored set of Monroe classics in The Diamond Collection II (see links at right).