Cynthia (film)

Cynthia is a 1947 American comedy-drama film starring Mary Astor, Elizabeth Taylor, and George Murphy. The film is based on the 1945 play The Rich, Full Life by Viña Delmar and was adapted by screenwriters Harold Buchman and Charles Kaufman.[2]

Cynthia (1947 film).jpg
Cynthia poster
Directed byRobert Z. Leonard
Written byHarold Buchman
Charles Kaufman
Buster Keaton
Based onThe Rich, Full Life
by Viña Delmar
Produced byEdwin H. Knopf
StarringElizabeth Taylor
Mary Astor
George Murphy
CinematographyCharles Edgar Schoenbaum
Edited byIrvine "Cotton" Warburton
Music byBronislau Kaper
Distributed byMetro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Release date
  • August 29, 1947 (1947-08-29)
Running time
98 minutes
CountryUnited States
Box office$1,648,000[1]


In school, baseball hero Larry Bishop (George Murphy) impresses a girl, Louise (Mary Astor), and they fall in love. Both coincidentally have dreams of traveling to Vienna, Austria someday to continue their education, Larry in medicine, Louise in music.

While still in college, Louise and Larry marry, Louise becomes pregnant, and they move to Larry’s hometown in Illinois, a small town called Napoleon. He takes a job in Dingle's hardware store and they raise their daughter, Cynthia (Elizabeth Taylor), who has chronic health problems and is quite frail. Fifteen years later, the Bishops are having trouble making ends meet, Larry can't afford to buy the home that they rent, and they no longer have any illusions about the adventurous lives they intended to lead.

Dr. Fred Jannings (Gene Lockhart), Larry’s brother-in-law, has been the family's physician since Cynthia's birth, and he strongly recommends against her doing any strenuous activities. Louise ignores this advice and lets Cynthia take a role in the school musical, but her health fails, causing Larry to be upset with his wife.

Cynthia falls for a classmate, Ricky Latham (James Lydon), in the meantime. Louise encourages them to go together to the school prom - Cynthia's first ever date, over her husband's objections. But as the bills and worries mount, Larry loses his patience and his job one day after his boss, J.M. Dingle (Harlan Briggs), objects to his coming late to work. After returning home, Larry tells Louise that they can now leave Napoleon and go to Chicago. But Louise has decided to use her money to buy the house, and Cynthia no longer wants to go either, because she is now going steady with Ricky. In the end, the family unites to embrace the future, satisfied when Larry's boss comes back, hat in hand, asking him to return to his job.



According to MGM records, the film earned $1,206,000 in the U.S. and Canada and $442,00 in other markets, resulting in a loss of $280,000.[1]


  1. ^ a b c The Eddie Mannix Ledger, Los Angeles: Margaret Herrick Library, Center for Motion Picture Study.
  2. ^ Article on film at Turner Classic Movies accessed 8 Jan 2014

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