56 – Dial M for Murder

Welcome to The Best Movies I’ve Never Seen! This is the part of the blog where I work my way through 100 films I’ve never seen that are generally considered to be great. You’re invited to watch along with me if you can find a copy or find it streaming. So grab some popcorn and let’s get started!

Dial M for Murder

1954

Directed by Alfred Hitchcock

Quick synopsis… Director Alfred Hitchcock’s masterpiece of double-cross and intrigue stars Ray Milland as former tennis champ Tony Wendice, who concocts a plan to kill his rich but unfaithful wife (Grace Kelly), who’s embroiled in a liaison with a writer (Robert Cummings). When Tony’s plans go awry, he improvises a second act of deceit, but the entire bloody affair turns out to be far messier than he expected. John Williams plays a sly Scotland Yard inspector.

Funny how I thought last week’s movie, Charade, was a Hitchcock movie and then this week’s movie actually is a Hitchcock movie…

Grace Kelly is the only face I recognize in this film. I’m sure the other actors were quite popular in their day. I’m just not familiar with any of their work.

Kelly plays Margot, a wealthy socialite who is married to Tony, a former tennis pro. She recently had an affair with an American crime fiction writer named Mark, who happens to be visiting London. Margot introduces Mark to her husband and everything seems just fine. Tony is quite friendly toward his wife’s lover.

Unbeknownst to the adulterers, Tony is fully aware of the affair and has been contemplating the murder of his wife. This would satisfy his desire for revenge as well as allow him to inherit Margot’s substantial wealth. Tony concocts a plan that is seemingly foolproof. He convinces an old acquaintance named Swann, who has become something of a small time criminal, to commit the murder or else take the fall for blackmailing Margot over a missing love letter from Mark, something that Tony is secretly guilty of.

Swann agrees to go along with Tony’s plan, but Margot manages to get the upper hand when Swann strikes. She stabs him with a pair of scissors, killing her intended murderer…

And that’s all I’m going to say about the plot of this movie because that is just the beginning of all the twists and turns that this thing goes through. It’s incredible how these characters are able to weave different stories and point fingers to make others look guilty for any number of crimes.

I won’t say this is a new favorite among Hitchcock’s films. That title still goes to Rear Window, also starring Grace Kelly. But I am glad I’ve had a chance to see this now.

Having seen Dial M for Murder, it now ranks at number 904 out of 2,281 on my personal Flickchart list.

Have you seen Dial M for Murder? What did you think of it? What’s your favorite film directed by Alfred Hitchcock? Let me know your thoughts down in the comments!

4 thoughts on “56 – Dial M for Murder

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