20 user 13 critic

Heat Wave (1954)

The House Across the Lake (original title)
Not Rated | | Crime, Drama | 16 April 1954 (USA)
An American writer living in England gets entangled in a scheme by a beautiful blonde to murder her rich husband.


Ken Hughes


Ken Hughes (screenplay), Ken Hughes (novel)




Complete credited cast:
Alex Nicol ... Mark Kendrick
Hillary Brooke ... Carol Forrest
Sidney James ... Beverly Forrest
Susan Stephen ... Andrea Forrest
Paul Carpenter Paul Carpenter ... Vincent Gordon
Alan Wheatley ... Inspector MacLennan
Peter Illing ... Harry Stevens
Gordon McLeod Gordon McLeod ... Doctor Emery
Joan Hickson ... Mrs. Hardcastle
John Sharp ... Mr. Hardcastle
Hugh Dempster Hugh Dempster ... Frank
Monti DeLyle Monti DeLyle ... Head Waiter (as Monti de Lyle)


An American writer living in England gets entangled in a scheme by a beautiful blonde to murder her rich husband.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Crime | Drama


Not Rated | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


Certain scenes must have been cut, as some prominently listed cast members (John Sharp, Joan Hickson, Monti de Lyle) are barely visible in the finished film. See more »


Despite being set in the Lake District in England Carol drives a left hand drive car on the right side of the road. In England cards drive on the left and cars are right-hand drive. See more »

User Reviews

James M. Cain rip-off is more engaging than most of the films in VCI's "Hammer Noir" collection
29 July 2010 | by J. SpurlinSee all my reviews

An American writer (Alex Nicol), down on his luck, meets his rich neighbors who also live by the lake. He befriends the ailing husband (Sid James) and falls in love with the duplicitous wife (Hillary Brooke).

Ken Hughes directed "The House Across the Lake" (with the irrelevant American title of "Heat Wave") from his own screenplay based on his own novel. I guess he is the only one to blame for the story's blatant rip-off of James M. Cain (particularly "The Postman Always Rings Twice" and "Double Indemnity"). But at least he rips off the best, which means this crime thriller is more engaging than most of the films included in VCI's "Hammer Noir" DVD collection.

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Release Date:

16 April 1954 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Heat Wave See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Hammer Films See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.65 : 1
See full technical specs »

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