Young Dr. Kildare

Fresh out of med school, Dr. Jimmy Kildare declines to join his father's small town practice and instead heads off to a big hospital in New York.  He is one of a crop of young interns under the tutelage of crotchety old Dr. Gillespie, the brilliant but acerbic wheelchair-bound diagnostician. Young Dr. Kildare pulls ambulance duty and on his first trip responds to an unconscious man in a bar.  Interrupted by a call to a suicide attempt at a flop house, Jimmy sends the ambulance back to the hospital with the bar patient.  Joe the ambulance attendant feels no pity for the patient, assuming he is just a drunk, and does not follow Jimmy's instructions to administer oxygen en route.  The patient dies and it turns out he is a local political boss.  Jimmy takes the rap for Joe and earns a friend for life.  Jimmy is able to save the would-be suicide, who turns out to be an heiress with a mystery.  She is written off as a mental case by the hospital establishment but Jimmy flouts hospital authority to keep working the case and unravels the source of her depression.  Jimmy is fired as an intern but Gillespie hires him back as his assistant and protege.

This was the first of nine Kildare movies starring Lew Ayres as Jimmy Kildare and Lionel Barrymore as Dr. Gillespie.  Barrymore starred in six more movies as Gillespie without Kildare, after Lew Ayres conscientiously objected in WWII. There was one previous Kildare movie without either actor.

Familiar faces: Nat Pendleton as Joe the ambulance attendant; Marie Blake (Grandmama from "The Addams Family") as a receptionist; Monty Woolley (The Man Who Came to Dinner) as the psychiatrist treating the heiress; Samuel S. Hinds (George Bailey's dad from It's a Wonderful Life) as Dr. Kildare the elder.

Marie Blake and Nat Pendleton


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