Tony Wendice learns that his wife, Margo had an affair but even though it's over, he decided to kill her but chose to bide his time. He waited until Mark Halliday, his wife's boyfriend, returned to town. He then placed his plan in order. He summoned a man, whose reputation is a bit shady, and reveals that he knows his secrets but also tells him about his wife and her boyfriend and that they are each the beneficiary of their estates. He gets the man to agree to kill his wife and he has laid out what appears to be perfect plan. Only thing is the man was theone who was killed. Wendice trying to cover everything up, decides then to make it appear that Margo had an ulterior motive for killing the man. And it appears to be working except Halliday doesn't believe she's guilty and the police uncover a few anomalies.
Running Time: 105 Minutes
MPAA Ratings: PG
M stands for murder and also for mindf**k in this, one of Hitchcock'sbest films. Based on a stage play by Frederick Knott (whose credits also include another great thriller, Wait Until Dark), Dial M For Murder includes one of the most intricate plots of any murder mystery as well as maximum amounts of Hitchcock's trademark suspense.
A quietly evil Ray Milland plays a cold fish who plots to kill his wife (Grace Kelly) for her insurance money. As he explains at the beginning of the movie, he also wants to commit the “perfect murder” – i.e. one that is complicated and dangerous, yet fool proof and never suspected. John Williams is the Scotland Yard inspector who may be onto him.
It doesn’t matter that the movie starts with a lengthy exposition... or even that the identity of the villain is revealed in the first twenty minutes. Dial M will pull you to the edge of whatever you're sitting on and keep you there. (If you don't pay attention, you won’t be able to follow all the twists and turns of the plot.) Hitchcock’s direction was never better. In fact, the film is a good model to follow for mystery directors;Hitchcock draws exactly the right amount of attention (but not too much) to the subtle actions and details that are crucial to the murder plot.
The opening scene of this movie is the first clue to its near perfection. A mother preparing dinner for her child, waiting anxiously for her to return from school. Her hope, and then distress as she hears people pass outside her door. While down in the streets of Berlin, her daughter is receiving a balloon from a strange man in a long black coat. We know what's going to happen, but it's still horrific to watch. Fritz Lang did an amazing job on this film. A simple story of the underworld, the police, and a single man holding an entire city hostage, and done with such precision and pre-noir darkness that is oozes creepy suspense from beginning to end.
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