Greatest Film Scenes
and Moments

Indiscreet (1958)


Written by Tim Dirks

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Movie Title/Year and Scene Descriptions

Indiscreet (1958, UK)

In director Stanley Donen's sophisticated romantic comedy, about the flirtations between an unhappily-married financier and a single, middle-aged stage actress:

  • the split-screen telephone conversation (pre-dating the Doris Day/Rock Hudson Pillow Talk (1959) by almost a year) in different hotel rooms between avowed, good-looking international financier Philip Adams (Cary Grant) - unhappily married and separated from his estranged wife and unable to get a divorce - and rich, successful, middle-aged London theatrical stage actress Anna Kalman (Ingrid Bergman)
  • over a game of pool, the scene of Philip explaining to Anna's brother-in-law Alfred Munson (Cecil Parker) his rationale for pretending that he was a married man (but was not), to purportedly make himself more of a "challenge" for some women because he would then be regarded as unavailable - a unique form of chivalry: ("Let's just take a, well, a usual case. A man meets a woman. He's attracted to her. He courts her. They're old enough, and she, uh, favors him. Eventually she'd like to get married. He then says I am not the marrying kind. Do you admire such a man?...Well, I, too, don't care to be married. On the other hand, I don't care to give up women....Now, since I have no intention of getting married, I feel honor-bound to declare myself in the beginning...Certainly before the favors. That's where the honor comes in. Now, how do I declare myself? By saying I will never marry? What woman really believes that? If anything, it's a challenge to them....Well, I say I am married. I'm married, and I can't get a divorce. Now our position is clear. There can't be any misunderstanding later...Well, it is reasonable"); but then, Philip added that he also felt true love for Anna: ("And whether you believe it or not, I love Anna. I love Anna as I've never loved before. But I wouldn't marry any woman if you held a gun to my head")
  • the scene of Anna's expression of anger and humiliation to Alfred and his wife Margaret (Phyllis Calvert) (Anna's sister) at being deceived about Philip's marital status - the film's main plot twist: ("I was down on my knees asking his forgiveness because I asked him to marry me. On my knees! How dare he make love to me and not be a married man!"); she slammed the door shut to her bedroom and threw her perfume bottle through her mirror (off-screen)
  • Alfred's remark about the irony of the revelation: ("It's all very strange. It was perfectly all right when he was married, when you'd think that it wouldn't be. And now that we know that he's single, when it should be all right, if you know what I mean, well, it isn't. Do you follow me?")
  • the film's final consoling lines by Philip to a vengeful and tearful Anna after he had proposed to her, but she had decided that she wanted to remain 'unmarried' to him ("I mean we'll go on as before") - she didn't believe they were fated for marriage; however, because he was so emotionally shocked at her decision, he was able to get her to change her mind: ("That's the most improper thing I've ever heard.... I can hardly believe my ears....I didn't think you were capable of it....We're not married....But you didn't know I wasn't married.... I knew you didn't know. What's the matter with you? How could you ask me to do such a thing? Haven't you been following what I've been saying? Oh, I tell you, women are not the sensitive sex. That's one of the great delusions of literature. Men are the true romanticists....Don't cry, Anna, I-I love you. Everything will be all right. You'll like being married. You will. You'll see. Yes")

Split Screen Phone Conversation: Philip and Anna

Philip's Pool Game Discussion About His Marital Status With Anna's Brother-In-Law Alfred

Anna's Anger At Being Deceived

Eventual Proposal of Marriage


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