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I Married a Communist (1949)

aka I Married a Communist

Directed By: 
Details: 73 mins · English


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Small Nan Lowry Collins
Small Brad Collins aka Frank Johnson
Small Don Lowry
Small Vanning
Small Christine Norman
Small Jim Travers
Small Bailey, younger henchman


No_movie_poster Robert Stevenson Director
No_movie_poster Jack J. Gross Production
No_movie_poster Robert Hardy Andrews Writer
No_movie_poster George W. George Writer


Brad Collins (Ryan), a San Francisco shipping executive (real name Frank Johnson) who recently married Nan Lowry Collins (Laraine Day) after a brief courtship, was once involved with Communism in New York, while a stevedore during the Depression. Shortly after returning home following their honeymoon, the couple meet Christine Norman (Janis Carter), an old flame of Collins. Nan immediately dislikes her.

Collins becomes the target of a Communist cell and its leader, Vanning (Thomas Gomez), who orders the murder of an alleged FBI informer drowned after a brief interrogation. After threatening to reveal Collins' responsibility for a murder as well as his communist past, Vanning orders the executive to sabotage the shipping industry in the San Francisco Bay by resisting union demands in a labor dispute. He claims it is impossible to leave the Communist Party. Meanwhile Norman, bitter over Collins's earlier rejection, is ordered to become closer to his brother-in-law Don Lowry (Agar) by indoctrinating him with their Communist world view. Norman, though, genuinely falls in love with Lowry, with Vanning claiming that she is not meant to be so emotional.

A friend of Collins and former boyfriend of Nan, union leader Jim Travers (Richard Rober) cannot understand why Collins has become unreasonable to deal with. Travers is concerned about the possibility of the small number of communists in the union being able to take it over, and suspects Norman of being a communist, or at least a fellow traveler. He discusses this with Lowry, who is a new colleague. Lowry denies Norman's politics, apparently still free of communist ideology, or an awareness of where his, by now, future wife's friends are coming from politically. She confesses when confronted, but after Lowry rejects her she shows him a photograph of herself with Collins/Johnson and reveals his communist past. Vanning interrupts them. Angry with Christine for breaking orders, she was supposed to be in Seattle for another two days on her day job as a photographer, he tries to lean on Lowry because he is now able to expose the influence the party has regained over Collins.

Lowry travels to the Collins's residence to inform them of what he has learned, but is run over by a car driven by the communist hit man J.T Arnold (Paul E. Burns) who had observed the earlier killing with Collins. Nan, previously informed by Norman that her brother is in danger, tries to convince her husband that Lowry's killing was not an accident. He pretends to be unconvinced. Confronting Christine, Nan is told of her husband's past, and Christine (falsely, though he was with Arnold) informs her that Bailey (William Talman) was probably responsible for Lowry's death. Preparing a suicide note, Christine is interrupted by Vanning, who thinks this is a good solution, but wishes to keep politics out of it, and destroys her confession of communist involvement. It is unclear if she does commit suicide, or whether she is thrown out of the high window.

Intent on revenge, Nan befriends Bailey at the fairground where he has legitimate employment, and goes off with him. The hit man is saved when she is identified, and Nan is kidnapped and taken to the hidden local communist headquarters in Arnold's warehouse. Collins tracks his wife down to this location, and by threatening Arnold with a gun, is able to gain admittance. In a shootout, Bailey and Vanning are killed, and Collins fatally injured. In his last moments Nan says she still loves him.