After learning that his wife Margot had a brief affair with mystery writer Mark Halliday, Tony Wendice decides he’s going to kill her. He wants to provide himself with an ironclad alibi and so blackmail a one-time schoolmate with a shady past, Charles Swann, to do the killing for him. The plan is simple. He will give Swann a key to their flat and while he and Halliday are out at a dinner, Swan can let himself into the flat and strangle her. It all goes as planned but Margot successfully defends herself, killing Swan in the process. She is convicted of his murder – Tony had planted evidence to suggest that he had been blackmailing her – and soon finds herself in prison awaiting execution on the gallows. It’s left to Mark Halliday and a sympathetic policeman, Chief Inspector Hubbard, to uncover Wendice’s plan and get the evidence to arrest him. –IMDb
Alfred Hitchcock has been the most well-known director to the general public since the 1940s – and he remains so in the 21st century, more than 25 years after his death. His name evokes instant expectations on the part of audiences around the world: of a memorable night of movie-watching highlighted by at least two or three great chills (and a few more good ones), some striking black comedy, and an eccentric characterization or two in virtually every one of the director’s movies across a half-century – and usually laced with a comical cameo appearance by the director himself.
Alfred Joseph Hitchcock was born into a devoutly Catholic family in London, and his religious upbringing – with its attendant issues of guilt – would have a powerful influence on the psychological underpinnings of his later work. He was trained at a technical school, and initially gravitated to movies through art courses and advertising. He studied the work of other filmmakers, most notably the German expressionists… read more
A talkie script conveyed with such attentive visual camerawork (what else can you expect from Hitchcock?). A movie that reveals how diabolical plans on paper are always perfect until human error factors in when performed in real life. Also, no character in this movie is completely innocent. http://www.dannyindio.com/2013/04/jst-dial-m-for-murder.html
Hitchcock at his most devilishly clever. When viewed in 3D, Hitch's temporal and spatial manipulations take on a greater significance; his rigorously controlled mise-en-scene (particularly the set design and blocking) produces a palpable sense of fear, tension, and constriction. But DIAL M FOR MURDER's greatest asset lies in Ray Milland's performance: slimy, sophisticated, deviously puckish, and mordantly funny. He's like a cornered animal gnawing off his leg through a barb wire fence. Watching him scheme and improvise with unflappable elan is perhaps one of the film's greatest (and, yes, also one of its most perverse) pleasures.
A decent little mystery story. Saw it again recently (Sept. 2011) and was struck by the difference between the true depth of this movie, which was filmed in 3D, and the layer effect of the mostly post… read review
This isn’t my favorite Hitchcock film (that’s Rear Window), but it’s a good one nonetheless. Dial M for Murder is adapted from a stage play, and as is often the case in these circumstances… read review