Cast & Crew
Charles W. Moffett
Caroline Cram, a young woman tortured by depression, returns to her lonely room after breaking up with her fiancé and unintentionally takes an overdose of sleeping pills. The accident brings Caroline to the attention of a psychotherapist, who attempts to help her understand what has caused her present sense of hopelessness. Caroline, whose mother died when she was young, clings to her father for affection, but he is unable to allay her fears of guilt and rejection. By means of therapeutic sessions in his office, the doctor diagnoses that Caroline's problems stem from her emotionally disturbed childhood. The "normal," positive behavior of the Dunne family of a mother, father and three small children, who live next door to Caroline, is juxtaposed with her case history to present a portrait of a well-adjusted group who help, sustain and comfort one another in everyday life. Eventually, Caroline's doctor enables her to face the roots of her fears and problems and is hopeful that she will be able to readjust and cope with life.
Charles W. Moffett
Reviews state that The Lonely Night was produced with the cooperation of the Mental Health Film Board. The film secured theatrical distribution two years after it was completed and had been well received at several film festivals, including Edinburgh and Venice. In a New York Times article on July 13, 1952, writer-director-producer Irving Jacoby described the film as being "a picturization of how modern psychotherapy works, as seen through the case history of a young girl and a family. It is not meant as a plea for psychotherapy, but as an illustration of when and if such therapy is needed." The article also stated that Marian Seldes, who received excellent reviews for her portrayal of "Caroline," was the only professional in the cast of fifty and that the film was photographed in and around Westchester, NY. According to the same article, clarinetist Benny Goodman, heard on the sound track, was listed in the credits as Ben David.