IMDb > Compulsion (1959)
Compulsion
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Compulsion (1959) More at IMDbPro »

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Compulsion -- Trailer for this film based on the best selling novel

Overview

User Rating:
7.5/10   3,118 votes »
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Down 7% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Director:
Writers:
Richard Murphy (screenplay)
Meyer Levin (based on the novel by)
Contact:
View company contact information for Compulsion on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
4 May 1959 (Sweden) See more »
Tagline:
Sometimes murder is just a way to pass the time. See more »
Plot:
Two wealthy law-school students go on trial for murder in this version of the Leopold-Loeb case. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Awards:
Nominated for BAFTA Film Award. Another 1 win & 4 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
The Hand of God See more (54 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Orson Welles ... Jonathan Wilk

Diane Varsi ... Ruth Evans

Dean Stockwell ... Judd Steiner

Bradford Dillman ... Arthur A. Straus

E.G. Marshall ... District Attorney Harold Horn

Martin Milner ... Sid Brooks

Richard Anderson ... Max Steiner
Robert F. Simon ... Police Lt. Johnson (as Robert Simon)

Edward Binns ... Tom Daly
Robert Burton ... Charles Straus
Wilton Graff ... Mr. Steiner
Louise Lorimer ... Mrs. Straus aka 'Mumsy'

Gavin MacLeod ... Padua - Horn's Assistant
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Ina Balin ... Mike's girlfriend (scenes deleted)
Edmund Cobb ... Policeman (scenes deleted)
Frank Conroy ... (scenes deleted)
Don Anderson ... Reporter (uncredited)
Terry Becker ... Angry Reporter (uncredited)
Russ Bender ... Edgar Llewellyn - Attorney (uncredited)
Peter Brocco ... Albert, Steiner's Chauffeur (uncredited)

Alan Carney ... Globe Newspaper Editior (uncredited)
Harry Carter ... Detective Davis (uncredited)
Ben Frommer ... Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)
Wendell Holmes ... Jonas Kessler (uncredited)
Kenner G. Kemp ... Juror (uncredited)
Colin Kenny ... Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)
Henry Kulky ... Tough Waiter (uncredited)
Mike Lally ... Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)
Gerry Lock ... Emma (uncredited)
Jack Lomas ... Medical Examiner (uncredited)
Dayton Lummis ... Dr. Allwyn - Psychiatrist (uncredited)
Hank Mann ... Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)

Frank McClure ... Reporter (uncredited)
Hans Moebus ... Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)
Ralph Montgomery ... Courtroom Reporter (uncredited)
William H. O'Brien ... Waiter (uncredited)
Voltaire Perkins ... Judge Matthews (uncredited)
Jack Raine ... Professor McKinnon (uncredited)
Tony Regan ... Reporter (uncredited)
Jeffrey Sayre ... Reporter on Telephone (uncredited)
Simon Scott ... Detective Brown (uncredited)
Nina Shipman ... Girlfriend (uncredited)
Hal Taggart ... Reporter (uncredited)
Arthur Tovey ... Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)
Tom Wilson ... Juror (uncredited)
Wilson Wood ... Reporter (uncredited)

Directed by
Richard Fleischer 
 
Writing credits
Richard Murphy (screenplay)

Meyer Levin (based on the novel by)

Produced by
Richard D. Zanuck .... producer
 
Original Music by
Lionel Newman 
 
Cinematography by
William C. Mellor (director of photography)
 
Film Editing by
William Reynolds (film editor)
 
Art Direction by
Mark-Lee Kirk 
Lyle R. Wheeler 
 
Set Decoration by
Eli Benneche (set decorations)
Walter M. Scott (set decorations)
 
Costume Design by
Adele Palmer (costumes designed by)
 
Makeup Department
Ben Nye .... makeup artist
Helen Turpin .... hair stylist
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Ben Kadish .... assistant director
 
Sound Department
Eugene Grossman .... sound
Harry M. Leonard .... sound
 
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Charles Le Maire .... executive wardrobe designer (as Charles LeMaire)
Ed Wynigear .... wardrobe (uncredited)
 
Editorial Department
Orven Schanzer .... first assistant editor (uncredited)
 
Music Department
Earle Hagen .... orchestrations
Bernard Mayers .... orchestrator (uncredited)
 
Crew verified as complete


Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies
  • Bausch & Lomb  CinemaScope lenses by
  • CinemaScope  acknowledgment: is the registered trademark of Twentieth Century-Fox Film Corporation

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
103 min | 99 min (FMC Library Print)
Country:
Language:
Aspect Ratio:
2.35 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
4-Track Stereo (35 mm magnetic prints) (Westrex Recording System) | Mono (35 mm optical prints) (Westrex Recording System)
Certification:
Canada:PG (video rating) | Finland:K-16 | Germany:16 (re-rating) | Sweden:15 | UK:A | USA:Approved (certificate #19194) | West Germany:18 (f)

Did You Know?

Trivia:
Because Orson Welles was having tax problems during the production, at the end of shooting his salary for the movie was garnisheed by the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department. This upset Welles so much that just before he finished looping his dialogue in post-production, he stormed off the studio and left the country. All that was left to be looped was the last 20 seconds of his end speech in the courtroom. Incredibly, editor William Reynolds fixed this problem without needing Welles. Reynolds took words and pieces of words Welles had spoken earlier in the movie, and pieced them one by one into those 20 seconds.See more »
Goofs:
Continuity: When D.A. Horn is interviewing Straus, Horn sits down in a chair that was meant for Staus and moves a floor lampshade back down that had been directing its light at that chair. Staus moves to stand beside the floor lamp. The light is then variably on and off as shots between the two change.See more »
Quotes:
[first lines]
Judd Steiner:To the perfect crime!
Arthur Straus:Crime. Oh, my wealthy fraternity brothers. 67 dollars, and a second-hand typewriter.
See more »
Movie Connections:
Version of Swoon (1992)See more »

FAQ

Who represents Leopold and who represents Loeb in the movie?
Is 'Compulsion' based on a book?
Are there any other movies about Leopold/Loeb?
See more »
11 out of 13 people found the following review useful.
The Hand of God, 17 June 2010
Author: Claudio Carvalho from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

In 1924, in Chicago, the wealthy and psychotic nihilist law students Judd Steiner (Dean Stockwell) and Arthur Strauss (Bradford Dillman) believe that they can be above the law and commit minor infractions. Their college mate Sid Brooks (Martin Milner) that works for the Chicago Globe is assigned to go to the morgue to see a drowned boy found in Hegewisch Park. He discovers that the boy is actually Paul Kessler, the son of a millionaire that had been kidnapped for ransom. Further, Sid discovers a pair of the glasses with the boy that becomes a lead to the police since it does not fit the victim. When Judd finds that his glasses are evidence for the murder case, he prepares an alibi using his activity of ornithologist and tells that he was picking up girls with Artie driving the Stutz Bearcat of his family. However the astute District Attorney Harold Horn (E.G. Marshall) investigates the case and lures Judd getting his confession. But the Steiner and Strauss families hire the cunning defense attorney Jonathan Wilk (Orson Welles) to defend the perpetrators of the hideous crime. In the beginning of the trial, Wilk surprisingly changes his plea from "not guilty" to "guilty".

Movies of trial are usually engaging and "Compulsion" is not an exception. The dark story based on a true murder case is supported by magnificent performances, highlighting Dean Stockwell and Bradford Dillman in the roles of arrogant and psychotic millionaires that expect to commit a perfect crime and Orson Welles in the lesser but relevant role of a smart lawyer. My vote is seven.

Title (Brazil): "Estranha Compulsão" ("Strange Compulsion")

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