September 3rd, 2020

Me

Movie Critique – Dial M for Murder

For review of other books or movies by Alfred Hitchcock, go here.

Stars: 5 / 5

Recommendation: A charming villain, a scintillating beauty, a debonair writer; and a relentless detective - all elements needed for a perfect murder mystery. Having Hitchcock direct and produce it only makes it a perfect film to watch. 

Dial M for Murder is a 1954 American crime mystery thriller produced and directed by Sir Alfred Hitchcock. With Ray Milland, Grace Kelly, Robert Cummings, Anthony Dawson, and John Williams in the lead cast, the film was based on a stage play of the same name by Frederick Knott who also wrote the screenplay for the film. This is the first of the three films in the Grace Kelly - Hitchcock collaboration. 

Tony Wendice (portrayed by Ray Milland), a British ex-professional tennis player is married to a rich socialite, Margot Wendice (portrayed by Grace Kelly). When he discovers Margot's alleged affair, he decides to have her murdered in revenge. He hires his old acquaintance Charles Alexander Swann (portrayed by Anthony Dawson) through blackmail to kill his wife. Things start to go not as planned for Tony as the plot progresses.

This film reminded me of two films - 1948 American thriller film noir Sorry, Wrong Number and 1998 American crime thriller A Perfect Murder - that made me wonder if they inspired each other. And I wasn’t far off the mark. At least the 1998 A Perfect Murder was a remake with a few changes. There were several revivals and adaptations of "Dial M for Murder" though.

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