Miracle in Harlem


1h 10m 1948
Miracle in Harlem

Brief Synopsis

A young woman is suspected of killing the business magnate who swindled her.

Film Details

Genre
Drama
Crime
Release Date
Nov 29, 1948
Premiere Information
World premiere in New York: 6 Aug 1948
Production Company
Herald Pictures, Inc.
Distribution Company
Screen Guild Productions, Inc.
Country
United States

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 10m
Film Length
6,401ft

Synopsis

Aunt Hattie, a deeply religious, elderly black woman who operates a candy factory from her kitchen in Harlem, eagerly awaits the arrival of Bert Hallam, her adopted son, who is returning from the Army to study for the ministry. Bert is in love with Julie Weston, Hattie's niece, who will soon be taking over control of the candy factory. At the same time, Lt. Renard of the police homicide bureau begins a search for Phillip Manley, a confidence artist who is wanted for murder and is known to have been involved in a Chicago check swindling operation with Jim Marshall, the ne'er-do-well son of candy manufacturer Albert Marshall. During a police interview, Albert informs detectives that he sent his son to Chicago to study chemistry, and that his son was not interested in the candy business. Back at Hattie's home, the old woman tells Bert and Julie that she has had a premonition of her impending death and begins rehearsing for her funeral. When Jim makes an unexpected visit to his father's office, Albert cuts off his money supply and tells him that his reckless living is the result of his mother's death. To spite his father, Jim vows to work for Albert's rival candy company and make them a better business competitor by modernizing their equipment. Albert likes the idea, though, and instead of opposing his son, decides to use his idea to swindle Hattie out of her business. Acting anonymously through an employee named Wilkinson, Albert convinces Hattie to sign her company over to him by pledging to upgrade and expand her factory. Julie and Hattie fall for Albert's trick, but when Jim accuses his father of stealing his idea, Albert puts him in charge of Hattie's factory. Jim and Julie soon fall in love, and one day, Bert catches Jim making a pass at her. A short time later, however, Jim rejects Julie's romantic overtures and tells her that Albert is actually the owner of Hattie's factory. Bert punches Jim when he catches him trying to coerce Julie into yielding to his affections. When Albert double-crosses Wilkinson, Wilkinson sends him a box of poisoned chocolates. Albert eats the chocolate and dies, after which Julie is arrested on suspicion of murder. Julie proclaims her innocence and tells police that Alice, Albert's secretary, and Jim had better motives to kill Albert. Julie is released by the police, but when she returns home, Jim tries to kill her. During the struggle, a mysterious man enters the darkened room and kills Jim. Julie is arrested again and placed in a police line-up. A break in the case finally comes when Bert recalls Jim's association with Manley. A trap is then set for Manley, and he is arrested following a full confession of his crimes, which includes the killing of Jim. After Alice confesses that she murdered Albert, she attempts suicide but is stopped and later is sent to die in the electric chair. With the racketeering operation exposed, Julie and Bert resume their romance, and Hattie decides to give up her obsession with her impending death.

Film Details

Genre
Drama
Crime
Release Date
Nov 29, 1948
Premiere Information
World premiere in New York: 6 Aug 1948
Production Company
Herald Pictures, Inc.
Distribution Company
Screen Guild Productions, Inc.
Country
United States

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 10m
Film Length
6,401ft

Quotes

Trivia

Notes

Unidentified contemporary news items in the George P. Johnson Collection at UCLA note that Miracle in Harlem was filmed at twenty locations in New York City's Harlem, and that some filming took place at Filmcraft Studios in the Bronx.