I’ve Lived Before (1956)

Article #491 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing date: 7-19-2002
Posting date: 12-12-2002

An airline pilot believes he is the reincarnation of a World War I pilot who died in a plane crash in 1918.

This is another of the reincarnation-themed movies that appeared in the wake of the Bridey Murphy case. It’s possible to get a little tired of these, because they tend to get a little predictable in some regards; you know there’s going to be someone wondering whether they are going crazy or not, and there’s going to be a lot of talk about whether the subject is really the person’s reincarnation or whether they read about the person somewhere and forgot they had the knowledge. That’s all here, or course, and it’s all very earnest; the movie takes itself very seriously indeed, perhaps too much so. Still, it does have some nice dramatic resonance, some good acting, particularly from Jock Mahoney, Ann Harding and instantly familiar character actor John McIntire. And the first twenty minutes of the movie really starts off with a bang, with the great dogfight in the pre-credits sequence, and the near crash that kicks off the whole story arc. Not perfect, but I think it’s one of the better takes on the reincarnation theme. The cast also features Leigh Snowden and another instantly recognizable character actor, Raymond Bailey.

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