Johnny Nobody – 1961 | 88 mins | Drama | B&W
Nigel Patrick directs, as well as stars, in this surprising and provocative drama that only weakens when the mystery and suspense elements are introduced.
Irish-American author James Mulcahy (William Bendix) upsets the inhabitants of an Irish village to which he has retired with his atheistic writings. Hard-drinking Mulcahy is thrown out of the local pub after a row with the regulars, and after brawling in the street with a collection of the male populace, he walks to the steps of the local church and dares God to strike him dead with a thunderbolt. Suddenly a shot rings out and Mulcahy falls dead on the floor.
The fatal gunshot came from a stranger (Aldo Ray) calling himself ‘nobody’ and claiming a voice told him to kill Mulcahy. The man is dubbed "Johnny Nobody" by the press, and alleges he has no knowledge of Mulcahy or even of himself. The local village priest, Father Carey (Nigel Patrick), becomes one of amnesiac Johnny’s sympathisers whilst money pours in from around Ireland to aid Johnny in his upcoming trial for murder in Dublin.
Whilst the trial is underway Father Carey visits his former teacher Father Bernard. Father Bernard sows the seeds of doubt in Carey’s mind by pouring scorn on the notion that God took a life by arming a stranger – and suggests Father Carey came to visit because deep down he has misgivings that the shooting of Mulcahy was a miracle.
When Father Carey begins to receive strangely cryptic anonymous mail from the coastal village of Inishgashel, he drives down there and learns more about the mysterious Johnny Nobody.
Nigel Patrick: Director
Tony Inglis: Art Direction
Ted Moore: Cinematography
Eileen Long: Costume Design
Geoffrey Foot: Film Editing
Helga Budina: Makeup Department
Paul Rabiger: Makeup Department
Ron Goodwin: Original Music
Irving Allen: Producer
Patrick Kirwan: Script
Arthur Bradburn: Sound Department
Jim Groom: Sound Department
Wally Milner: Sound Department
Nigel Patrick: Father Carey
Yvonne Mitchel: Miss Floyd
William Bendix: James Ronald Mulcahy
Aldo Ray: Johnny Nobody
Cyril Cusack: Prosecuting Counsel O’Brien
Bernie Winters: Photographer
Niall MacGinnis: Defending Counsel Sullivan
Noel Purcell: Brother Timothy
Eddie Byrne: Landlord O’Connor
John Welsh: Judge
Joe Lynch: Tinker
Jimmy O’Dea: Postman Tim