A middle-aged couple suspects foul play when their neighbor's wife suddenly drops dead.


Woody Allen
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 3 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Woody Allen ... Larry Lipton
Diane Keaton ... Carol Lipton
Jerry Adler ... Paul House
Lynn Cohen ... Lillian House
Ron Rifkin ... Sy
Joy Behar ... Marilyn
William Addy William Addy ... Jack, the Super
John Doumanian John Doumanian ... Neighbor
Sylvia Kauders ... Neighbor
Ira Wheeler Ira Wheeler ... EMS Doctor
Alan Alda ... Ted
Anjelica Huston ... Marcia Fox
Melanie Norris ... Helen Moss
Marge Redmond ... Mrs. Dalton
Zach Braff ... Nick Lipton


Larry and Carol are fairly normal New Yorkers who have sent their son off to college. They meet an elderly couple down the hall and later in the week find that the wife has suddenly died. Carol becomes suspicious of Paul who seems to be too cheerful and too ready to move on. She begins her investigation. Larry insists she is becoming too fixated on their neighbor as all of the irregularities seem to have simple non-homicidal explanations. Ted, a recently divorced friend helps her investigation and Larry begins to become jealous of their relationship and agrees to help her. Written by John Vogel <jlvogel@comcast.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Comedy | Mystery

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for mild language, and for elements of violence in a comic murder mystery | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


Apparently, Woody Allen used elements that he discarded from Annie Hall (1977) for this movie. See more »


When they review the plot for the perfect murder, they all agree that Mr. and Mrs. House stood to gain if the "other woman" died. However, then it doesn't make sense for Mrs. House and the other woman to switch identities, pretending that Mrs. House died instead. See more »


[first lines]
Larry Lipton: C'mon, you promised to sit through the hockey game without being bored,
Carol Lipton: [overlapping] I know, honey, I promised.
Larry Lipton: and I'll sit through the Wagner opera with you next week.
Carol Lipton: I know.
Larry Lipton: I already bought the earplugs.
Carol Lipton: Yeah, well, with your eyesight I'm surprised you can see the puck. Wow, yay, come on.
See more »


References Last Year at Marienbad (1961) See more »


Der fliegende Holländer (The Flying Dutchman)
Written by Richard Wagner
Performed by Chor der Staatsoper München (as Chor) and Orchester der Staatsoper München
Vocal performance by Hans Hotter
Conducted by Clemens Krauss
Courtesy of Landis S.R.L.
See more »

User Reviews

Fun House For Neurotics
4 February 2009 | by LechuguillaSee all my reviews

Leave it to Woody Allen to create interesting characters and funny dialogue. He plays Larry Lipton, a New York City book editor, whose wife Carol (Diane Keaton) becomes convinced that one of their apartment neighbors is a murderer. Half the enjoyment of this film is watching, and listening to, neurotic Larry as he reacts to his wife's excellent sleuthing adventure. She and Larry's friend Ted (Alan Alda) plot strategy on how to catch the presumed murderer, much to the chagrin of Larry.

Some of the dialogue is amusing, like when Carol insists that Larry accompany her to the suspects' apartment for some serious nosing around. Says Larry: "I can't relax; I'm in a strange man's apartment in my T-shirt and pajamas".

My impression is that at least some of the dialogue is semi-improvised. Whatever the dialogue method, the result is back and forth banter that sounds highly natural and convincing. When you combine this naturalistic style of talk with terrific performances by Allen, Keaton, Alda, and several other actors, the time flies by, and you're sorry when the film ends.

The murder "mystery" element isn't really believable. But that's okay, since it's strictly ancillary to the characterizations and the humorous talk. Even so, there is indeed a puzzle that will be solved by the film's end.

Editing and cinematography are fine. Background music features 1930's and 40's pop songs. With all the NYC street scenes, I even learned what New Yorkers mean when they refer to a "crosstown bus".

Normally, I don't care for talky films. But the dialogue here is so clever that the cinematic experience is pleasant despite a talk heavy script. "Manhattan Murder Mystery" provides a lot of enjoyment, at the expense of a neurotic character whose life is turned into a fun house of comically scary and startling events.

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Release Date:

18 August 1993 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Manhattan Murder Mystery See more »


Box Office


$13,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$2,015,360, 22 August 1993

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby SR (Mono)| SDDS


Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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