8.2/10
155,051
359 user 107 critic

Dial M for Murder (1954)

PG | | Crime, Thriller | 29 May 1954 (USA)
Trailer
2:34 | Trailer
A former tennis player tries to arrange his wife's murder after learning of her affair.

Director:

Alfred Hitchcock

Writers:

Frederick Knott (screen play by), Frederick Knott (as adapted from his play)
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Popularity
3,550 ( 576)
Top Rated Movies #152 | Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 5 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Ray Milland ... Tony Wendice
Grace Kelly ... Margot Wendice
Robert Cummings ... Mark Halliday
John Williams ... Chief Inspector Hubbard
Anthony Dawson ... Charles Swann
Leo Britt Leo Britt ... The Storyteller
Patrick Allen ... Detective Pearson
George Leigh George Leigh ... Detective Williams
George Alderson George Alderson ... First Detective
Robin Hughes ... Police Sergeant O'Brien
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Storyline

In London, wealthy Margot Mary Wendice had a brief love affair with the American writer Mark Halliday while her husband and professional tennis player Tony Wendice was on a tennis tour. Tony quits playing to dedicate to his wife and finds a regular job. She decides to give him a second chance for their marriage. When Mark arrives from America to visit the couple, Margot tells him that she had destroyed all his letters but one that was stolen. Subsequently she was blackmailed, but she had never retrieved the stolen letter. Tony arrives home, claims that he needs to work and asks Margot to go with Mark to the theater. Meanwhile Tony calls Captain Lesgate (aka Charles Alexander Swann who studied with him at college) and blackmails him to murder his wife, so that he can inherit her fortune. But there is no perfect crime, and things do not work as planned. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Is this the man she was waiting for... or the man who was waiting for her? See more »

Genres:

Crime | Thriller

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

When Wendice is describing to Swann/Lesgate the middle-aged woman with whom Swann had been affiliated having died from a drug overdose, Wendice was originally to say "middle-aged woman found dead due to an overdose of cocaine". This was in the original script and stage play, but due to the Hollywood Hays Code rules of detailing of drug usage on-screen, the studio officials insisted to director Sir Alfred Hitchcock to replace the word "cocaine" with the word "something". See more »

Goofs

The photograph of the college class reunion has obviously been doctored. In the (doctored) photograph, it is obvious that the heads of Ray Milland, Anthony Dawson, and Alfred Hitchcock have simply been "cut and pasted" onto the bodies of three other men in the original (undoctored) photograph. 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.
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Crazy Credits

The title is shown on a background of a British telephone dial; its MN/6 marking is replaced by a single large M which forms the single M of the title. See more »

Alternate Versions

Filmed and originally briefly released in 3-D. Later shown in conventional, "flat" version. It was re-issued in 3-D in 1980. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Don't Say a Word (2001) See more »

User Reviews

Excellent Hitchcock thriller
17 January 2002 | by philipborringtonSee all my reviews

Surprisingly this is a lesser-known Hitchcock film but still stands up today as an exciting thriller full of twists and turns.

Ray Milland is excellent as ex-tennis pro Tony Wendice who decides to commit the perfect murder of his wife (Grace Kelly) when he learns of her affair with Robert Cummings (who isn't given much to do). In fact, Milland's subtle performance has you wanting the murder plot to work! Though it has to be said, Kelly's helpless female turn does not help in this regard either.

Hitchcock's skill here is to totally involve the viewer in the labyrinthine plot involving keys, telephone calls and stockings so that at the end of the film you haven't even noticed that virtually all the scenes are in one room.

If you like clever, wordy films with a touch of humour then I recommend `Dial M For Murder'. 8/10


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

29 May 1954 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Dial 'M' for Murder See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,400,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$12,562, 11 April 1999

Gross USA:

$12,562

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$18,816
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Company Credits

Production Co:

Warner Bros. See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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