Take One False Step

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Take One False Step
Take one false step 1949 poster small.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed byChester Erskine
Produced byChester Erskine
Screenplay byChester Erskine
Irwin Shaw
Based onthe story Night Call
by David Shaw
Irwin Shaw
StarringWilliam Powell
Shelley Winters
Music byWalter Scharf
CinematographyFranz Planer
Edited byRussell F. Schoengarth
Universal Pictures
Distributed byUniversal Pictures
Release date
  • June 3, 1949 (1949-06-03) (Los Angeles)
  • June 22, 1949 (1949-06-22) (New York City)
  • August 14, 1949 (1949-08-14) (United States)
Running time
94 minutes
CountryUnited States

Take One False Step is a 1949 film noir crime film directed by Chester Erskine and starring William Powell and Shelley Winters.[1]


A married college professor reluctantly agrees to have a drink with an old girlfriend; the next day he's being hunted for her murder.



The New York Times film critic, Bosley Crowther, panned the film and also gave the producers some advice. He wrote, "Something of the same drollery that was displayed by William Powell in his saturnine performance of Nick Charles in the Thin Man films is flashed by him on a few occasions in the Rivoli's new Take One False Step, a curiously mixed-up mystery picture which Chester Erskine produced, directed and helped to write. But for the most part our erstwhile detective and comedian is forced to play a role of rather painful proportions with forbidding austerity in this film ... a little more of Miss Winters—as an active participant, that is—might have rendered a rather drab picture more decorative, at least."[2]


  1. ^ Take One False Step at the American Film Institute Catalog.
  2. ^ Crowther, Bosley. The New York Times, film review, June 23, 1949. Accessed: July 31, 2013.

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