IMDb > Dial M for Murder (1954)
Dial M for Murder
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Dial M for Murder (1954) More at IMDbPro »

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Dial M for Murder -- An ex-tennis pro carries out a plot to murder his wife. When things go wrong, he improvises a brilliant plan B.

Overview

User Rating:
8.2/10   73,265 votes »
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Director:
Writers:
Frederick Knott (screen play)
Frederick Knott (adapted from his play)
Contact:
View company contact information for Dial M for Murder on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
29 May 1954 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
Kiss By Kiss...Supreme Suspense Unfurls! See more »
Plot:
An ex-tennis pro carries out a plot to murder his wife. When things go wrong, he improvises a brilliant plan B. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Awards:
Nominated for BAFTA Film Award. Another 3 wins & 2 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
Superior Hitchcock with an exquisite Grace Kelly See more (223 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Ray Milland ... Tony Wendice

Grace Kelly ... Margot Mary Wendice

Robert Cummings ... Mark Halliday

John Williams ... Chief Inspector Hubbard

Anthony Dawson ... Captain Lesgate (Swann)
Leo Britt ... The Storyteller
Patrick Allen ... Detective Pearson
George Leigh ... Detective Williams
George Alderson ... First Detective
Robin Hughes ... Police Sergeant O'Brien
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Richard Bender ... Banquet Member (uncredited)
Sanders Clark ... Detective (uncredited)
Jack Cunningham ... Bobby (uncredited)
Robert Dobson ... Police Photographer (uncredited)
Guy Doleman ... Detective (uncredited)
Bess Flowers ... Woman Departing Ship (uncredited)
Robert Garvin ... Banquet Member (uncredited)
Michael Hadlow ... Undetermined Role (uncredited)
Sam Harris ... Man in Phone Booth (uncredited)

Alfred Hitchcock ... Man at Tony's Table at the Dinner in Photograph (uncredited)
Harold Miller ... Men's Club Party Member (uncredited)

Martin Milner ... Policeman Outside Wendice Flat (uncredited)
Forbes Murray ... Judge at Margot's Trial (uncredited)
Ben Pollock ... Banquet Member (uncredited)
Thayer Roberts ... Detective (uncredited)
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Directed by
Alfred Hitchcock 
 
Writing credits
Frederick Knott (screen play)

Frederick Knott (adapted from his play)

Produced by
Alfred Hitchcock .... producer (uncredited)
 
Original Music by
Dimitri Tiomkin 
 
Cinematography by
Robert Burks (director of photography)
 
Film Editing by
Rudi Fehr (film editor)
 
Art Direction by
Edward Carrere 
 
Set Decoration by
George James Hopkins 
 
Makeup Department
Gordon Bau .... makeup artist
Otis Malcolm .... makeup artist (uncredited)
Gertrude Wheeler .... hairdresser (uncredited)
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Mel Dellar .... assistant director
C. Carter Gibson .... second assistant director (uncredited)
 
Art Department
Herbert Plews .... props (uncredited)
 
Sound Department
Oliver S. Garretson .... sound
Stanley Martin .... sound (uncredited)
Robert G. Wayne .... sound (uncredited)
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Eddie Leon Albert .... camera assistant (uncredited)
Wesley Anderson .... camera operator (uncredited)
Pat Clark .... still photographer (uncredited)
Vic Johnson .... gaffer (uncredited)
Dudie Maschmeyer .... grip (uncredited)
William John Ranaldi .... camera assistant (uncredited)
Leonard J. South .... camera technician (uncredited)
Claude Swanner .... best boy (uncredited)
 
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Moss Mabry .... wardrobe
Jack Delaney .... wardrobe: men (uncredited)
Lillian House .... wardrobe: ladies (uncredited)
Joan Joseff .... costume jeweller (uncredited)
 
Music Department
Dimitri Tiomkin .... conductor
 
Other crew
Rita Michaels .... script supervisor (uncredited)
 
Crew verified as complete


Production Companies
  • Warner Bros. (presents) (as Warner Bros. Pictures) (A Warner Bros.- First National Picture)
Distributors
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Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Alfred Hitchcock's Dial M for Murder" - UK (complete title), USA (complete title)
See more »
Runtime:
105 min | Portugal:88 min
Country:
Language:
Color:
Color (WarnerColor)
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (RCA Sound System)
Certification:
Argentina:13 | Australia:PG | Brazil:16 | Canada:PG (Ontario) | Canada:PG (video rating) | Finland:K-12 | France:U | Norway:16 | South Korea:12 (DVD rating) (2004) | Spain:T | Sweden:15 | UK:A (original rating) (passed with cuts) | UK:PG (re-rating) (2008) | UK:PG (video rating) (2003) (2004) | UK:PG (video rating: 100m) (1987) | USA:PG | USA:PG (1982 re-release) | USA:Approved (PCA #16708) | West Germany:16 (nf) (original rating) | West Germany:12 (video) (re-rating)

Did You Know?

Trivia:
Originally released in a "roadshow" format, with an intermission halfway through the film.See more »
Goofs:
Revealing mistakes: When Inspector Hubbard is looking out the bedroom window at Margot and the policemen walking toward the apartment, their legs suddenly disappear from view, revealing where the projected scene of the street meets the edge of the physical set.See more »
Quotes:
[first lines]
Margot Mary Wendice:let me get you another drink. Mark, before Tony comes I ought to explain something.
Mark Halliday:Yes, I've been waiting for that.
Margot Mary Wendice:I haven't told him anything about us.
See more »
Movie Connections:

FAQ

When did the police inspector begin to suspect who was the real murderer?
Is this movie based on a novel?
Why did Tony substitute the stockings for the scarf?
See more »
44 out of 74 people found the following review useful.
Superior Hitchcock with an exquisite Grace Kelly, 21 July 2002
Author: Dennis Littrell from United States

(Note: Over 500 of my movie reviews are now available in my book "Cut to the Chaise Lounge or I Can't Believe I Swallowed the Remote!" Get it at Amazon.)

This is a fine example of the kind of mystery that little old ladies from Pasadena (or Russell Square) adore. Perhaps Arsenic and Old Lace (1944) starring Cary Grant might be comparable in its gentile and bloodless ability to glue us to the screen.

This is certainly one of Hitchcock's best, but most of the credit must go to a devilishly clever play written by Frederick Knott from which the movie was adapted. (He also wrote Wait Until Dark (1967) starring Audrey Hepburn.) Hitchcock does a good job in not tinkering unnecessarily with the material. He also has the exquisitely beautiful Grace Kelly to play the part of Margot Wendice.

Ray Milland plays, with a kind of high-toned Brit panache, her diabolical husband, Tony Wendice, a one-time tennis star who married mostly for security. John Williams is the prim and proper Chief Inspector Hubbard. He lends to the part a bit of Sherlock Holmesian flair. One especially liked his taking a moment to comb his mustache after the case is solved. Robert Cummings, unfortunately plays Margot's American boyfriend as inventively as a sawhorse. For those of you who might have blinked, Hitchcock makes his traditional appearance in the photo on the wall from Tony Wendice's undergraduate days.

The fulcrum of the plot is the latchkey. It is the clue that (literally) unlocks the mystery. There is a modernized redoing of this movie called A Perfect Murder (1998) starring Michael Douglas and Gwyneth Paltrow in which a similar business with latchkeys is employed. I am not very good with clues so it was only after seeing that movie and Dial M for Murder for the second time that I finally understood what happened. Follow the latchkey!

Of course I was too distracted by Grace Kelly to fully appreciate such intricacies. I found myself struck with the ironic notion that anyone, even a cuckolded husband, might want to kill Grace Kelly or that a jury might find her guilty of anything! She remains in my psyche America's fairytale princess who quit Hollywood at the height of her popularity after only five years and eleven movies to become a real princess by marrying Prince Rainier of Monaco. Something was lost there, and something was gained. She was in essence the original Jackie Kennedy Onassis. I think, however, that the old saw about the man who marries for money, earning it, might apply to American princesses as well.

At any rate, Grace Kelly's cool and sublime bearing was on fine display here. Hitchcock cloths her in discreet nightgowns and snug (but certainly not clinging) dresses that show off her delicate figure and her exquisite arms and hint oh so coyly at her subtle sexuality. She was 25-years-old, stunningly beautiful, and in full confidence of her ability as an actress. She had just finished starring opposite James Stewart in another splendid Hitchcock one-room mystery, Rear Window (1954), and was about to make The Country Girl (1954) with Bing Crosby for which she would win an Oscar for Best Actress.

So see this for Grace Kelly who makes Gwyneth Paltrow (whom I adore) look downright gawky, and for Ray Milland whose urbane scheming seems a layer or two of hell removed from Michael Douglas's evil manipulations.

By the way, the "original theatrical trailer" preceding these Warner Brothers Classic videos is what we used to call the "Coming Attractions"--that is, clips directly from the movie and a promo. You might want to fast forward to the movie itself.

Was the above review useful to you?
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Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for Dial M for Murder (1954)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
I swear I saw this movie in B+W hlippman
Movies About Committing the 'Perfect Crime' JosephASpadaro
I was hoping the husband would get away with it--Anyone else feel same turidmadsen
not at all surprized about the key MADDOXRJM
Am I the only one... jmobleyj
Great in 3D paul-hannawi
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