6.9/10
1,192
29 user 18 critic

(1951)

In this Americanization of the 1931 German thriller, both the police and the criminal underworld stalk a mysterious killer who preys on small children.

Director:

Joseph Losey

Writers:

Norman Reilly Raine (screen play by), Leo Katcher (screen play by) | 1 more credit »
Reviews

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Drama | Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

This clever "feminist" reworking of Fritz Lang's classic M focuses on the mothers of children stalked by a deranged pedophile.

Director: Román Viñoly Barreto
Stars: Olga Zubarry, Roberto Escalada, Nathán Pinzón
M - Eine Stadt sucht einen Mörder (TV Mini-Series 2018)
Crime | Thriller

Winter in Vienna. Children disappear. For now without a trace, then their bodies are found. A gift for the tabloid press. For the police a series of defeats. Politically a problem. And at ... See full summary »

Stars: Udo Kier, Lars Eidinger, Moritz Bleibtreu
The Prowler (1951)
Drama | Film-Noir | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

When Susan Gilvray reports a prowler outside her house police officer Webb Garwood investigates and sparks fly. If only her husband wasn't in the way.

Director: Joseph Losey
Stars: Van Heflin, Evelyn Keyes, John Maxwell
The Big Night (1951)
Drama | Film-Noir | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A teenager comes of age while seeking revenge on the man who beat up his father.

Director: Joseph Losey
Stars: John Drew Barrymore, Preston Foster, Joan Lorring
M (1931)
Crime | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  

When the police in a German city are unable to catch a child-murderer, other criminals join in the manhunt.

Director: Fritz Lang
Stars: Peter Lorre, Ellen Widmann, Inge Landgut
The Lawless (1950)
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A newspaper editor in a small agricultural town finds himself going against the people in the town when he gets involved in the plight of the area's fruit pickers, who are mostly Mexican.

Director: Joseph Losey
Stars: Macdonald Carey, Gail Russell, Johnny Sands
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A man who is down on his luck falls in with a criminal.

Director: Cy Endfield
Stars: Frank Lovejoy, Kathleen Ryan, Richard Carlson
Eva (1962)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A raw Welsh novelist in Venice is humiliated by a money-loving Frenchwoman who erotically ensnares him.

Director: Joseph Losey
Stars: Jeanne Moreau, Stanley Baker, Virna Lisi
M I (2017)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Lila and Mo meet at a bus stop. Lila has a paralyzing speech impediment. Mo is chatty and exuberant. Lila is preparing for her exams. Mo illegally races cars for a living. Opposites attract... See full summary »

Director: Sara Forestier
Stars: Sara Forestier, Redouanne Harjane, Jean-Pierre Léaud
Pushover (1954)
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Undercover cop falls for the beautiful moll of a bank robber on the run and together they double-cross the hood and the cops.

Director: Richard Quine
Stars: Fred MacMurray, Kim Novak, Philip Carey
Abandon Ship (1957)
Adventure | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Ship's officer finds himself in command of a lifeboat full of survivors of a sunken luxury liner.

Director: Richard Sale
Stars: Tyrone Power, Mai Zetterling, Lloyd Nolan
Certificate: M Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A man and his girlfriend plan to rob the mansion of the man's eccentric but wealthy aunt. However, the aunt keeps dozens of cats in her home, and the man is deathly afraid of cats.

Director: David Lowell Rich
Stars: Michael Sarrazin, Gayle Hunnicutt, Eleanor Parker
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
David Wayne ... Martin W. Harrow
Howard Da Silva ... Inspector Carney
Martin Gabel ... Charlie Marshall
Luther Adler ... Dan Langley
Steve Brodie ... Police Lt. Becker
Raymond Burr ... Pottsy
Glenn Anders ... Riggert
Norman Lloyd ... Sutro
Walter Burke ... MacMahan
John Miljan ... Blind Baloon Vendor
Roy Engel ... Police Chief Regan
Janine Perreau ... The Last Little Girl
Leonard Bremen ... Lemke (as Lennie Bremen)
Benny Burt Benny Burt ... Jansen
Bernard Szold Bernard Szold ... Bradbury Bldg. Watchman
Edit

Storyline

There is a baby killer loose and the police can't find him. He is a sick, psychotic and confused individual, though guilty. The increased police activity trying to find the baby killer is interfering with the mob's criminal activities. The gangsters are not pleased the intense police attention so the mob decides to find him themselves. The mob bosses send the mobsters out to find him. He is found and the young girl he grabbed is saved. A mock trial is conducted in the basement of a parking garage in front of mass of gangsters who captured him and citizens demanding blood. The baby criminal is defended by a lawyer provided by the mob boss. As the police show up, the mob boss shoots the lawyer defending the baby killer because he is doing too good of a job defending the baby killer. Both the mob boss and the baby killer are taken into custody by the police for justice. As the movie ends and the guilty are led out of the parking garage, we hear the spooky single tune played on a flute ... Written by Hal Wigoda

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

...the worst crime of all! See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

March 1951 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

M le maudit See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Superior Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

At 00:33 minutes, when the mobster is recruiting homeless men as lookouts, there are two signs on the alley wall behind him. The smaller, at upper left, reads: "Beware of Sneak Thieves". The large calligraphy reads: "When did you write to your mother last?". The latter was a popular choice for homeless missions of the day. See more »

Goofs

When Harrow picks up the bird at the outdoor café, the position of the sugar dispenser on the table changes between when he gets up and then sits down on the opposite side of the table. See more »

Quotes

Mrs. Coster: Where's Elsie? Why didn't you wait for her?
Boy: We thought she went home with someone else. We wanted to wait for her. Honest, Mrs. Coster!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Le fantôme d'Henri Langlois (2004) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Surprisingly good
3 July 2004 | by ErewhonSee all my reviews

Seymour Nebenzal didn't have an especially illustrious career as a producer, either in Europe or the United States. Two of his American movies, in fact, SIREN OF ATLANTIS and this one, were remakes of movies he had produced in Europe. But in this case, he hired the right director.

Was it the growing Blacklist that resulted in this movie having no writing credits on screen? Perhaps, but also perhaps not, as the soon-to-be-blacklisted Howard da Silva and Joseph Losey both use their own names.

Losey and his team make excellent use of numerous Los Angeles locations, including Angel's Flight, Bunker Hill, the Bradbury Building (which is identified by name and location) and what seems to be that old amusement park in Long Beach, although what's seen here could be Venice.

David Wayne is fine as the disturbed child killer, and delivers the required final act speech very well. But he doesn't have the power and poetry of Lorre's performance--but then who in Hollywood in 1951 would have? The movie still has some of the comedy of Lang's original, but it's not as dry and sardonic, and there isn't as much of it. The score isn't good, and shoves the movie even more firmly in the direction of the melodrama it keeps threatening to become.

The very last shot is oddly theatrical in a literal sense: it looks like it is being performed on a stage. And I'm not sure what the point of the drunken lawyer trying to grasp a bit of his former glory really was. However, this element merely weakens the film, it doesn't destroy it.

No, this isn't as good as Lang's original, but Lang's original is perhaps the best film of a great director. It's a classic in almost every regard. This version of "M" is an interesting and largely successful attempt at adapting the themes and ideas of the original to Los Angeles, and to 1950s Hollywood. Naturally there are some weaknesses, but the movie is brisk and engrossing, and certainly doesn't deserve the obscurity into which it has fallen.

Some condemn the film merely for being a remake, but remakes have always been a large part of movie history. There's little reason to object to them, especially now that the original films tend to be available on video. (In the 1930s-50s, originals were generally withdrawn.) If the remake is good, then hooray, there are now two good movies on the subject. If it's bad, then the remake will soon be forgotten.


26 of 30 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 29 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Trending TV Series With Prime Video

Explore popular and recently added TV series available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed