The Wrong Man
Frequently bought together
Customers who bought this item also bought
Customers who viewed this item also viewed
Henry Fonda stars in director Alfred Hitchcock's real-life thriller of Academy Award winner Henry Fonda stars in director Alfred Hitchcock's real-life thriller of an innocent man trapped as the victim of a heartless criminal justice system--even though he's The Wrong Man.
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
‘THE WRONG MAN’ is like and unlike any other Alfred Hitchcock movie. The story packs tension; the images are spellbinding and the dilemma genuinely frightening. But this time, the master of suspense dramatizes the harrowing true experience of a man tried for crimes committed by a look-alike robber.
Musician Christopher Emmanuel "Manny" Balestrero [Henry Fonda] needs money to pay for his wife Rose Balestrero's [Vera Miles] dental procedure. When he tries to borrow money from their insurance policy, someone at the office mistakes him for a man who had robbed them twice at gunpoint. After Christopher Emmanuel "Manny" Balestrero is arrested, his defence attorney, Frank O'Connor [Anthony Quayle], works to demonstrate Christopher Emmanuel "Manny" Balestrero has an alibi for the crimes. The stress of the case, however, threatens to destroy Christopher Emmanuel "Manny" Balestrero's family before his name can be cleared. Prologue Narrator: Alfred Hitchcock.
FILM FACT: Actors appearing in the film, but not listed in the credits, include Harry Dean Stanton, Werner Klemperer, Tuesday Weld, Bonnie Franklin, and Barney Martin. Tuesday Weld and Bonnie Franklin made their film debuts as two giggly girls answering the door when the Christopher Emmanuel "Manny" Balestrero’s are seeking witnesses to prove his innocence.
Cast: Henry Fonda, Vera Miles, Anthony Quayle, Harold J. Stone, Charles Cooper, John Heldabrand, Esther Minciotti, Doreen Lang, Laurinda Barrett, Norma Connolly, Nehemiah Persoff, Lola D'Annunzio, Kippy Campbell, Robert Essen, Richard Robbins, Dayton Lummis, Peggy Webber, Charles Aidman (uncredited), Sammy Armaro (uncredited), Henry Beckman (uncredited), Ray Bennett (uncredited), Harry Bergman (uncredited), Sherman Billingsley (uncredited), Paul Bryar (uncredited), Ed Bryce (uncredited), John Caler (uncredited), Gordon B. Clarke (uncredited), William Crane (uncredited), Spencer Davis (uncredited), M'el Dowd (uncredited), Josef Draper (uncredited), Richard Durham (uncredited), Chris Gampel (uncredited), Will Gregory (uncredited), Charles J. Guiotta (uncredited), Rhodelle Heller (uncredited), William Hudson (uncredited), Mike Keene (uncredited), David Kelly (uncredited), Werner Klemperer (uncredited), Walter Kohler (uncredited), Maurice Manson (uncredited), Barney Martin (uncredited), Donald May (uncredited), John McKee (uncredited), Thomas J. Murphy (uncredited), Daniel Ocko (uncredited), Allan Ray (uncredited), Frank Schofield (uncredited), Harry Dean Stanton (uncredited), (uncredited), John Stephen (uncredited), Clarence Straight (uncredited), John Truax (uncredited), Don Turner (uncredited), John Vivyan (uncredited) and Maurice Wells (uncredited)
Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Producers: Alfred Hitchcock and Herbert Coleman
Screenplay: Angus MacPhail and Maxwell Anderson
Composer: Bernard Herrmann
Cinematography: Robert Burks
Video Resolution: 1080p [Black-and-White]
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
Audio: English: 2.0 DTS-HD Master Audio, French: 2.0 Dolby Digital, Spanish: 2.0 Dolby Digital, Spanish [Latin American]: 2.0 Dolby Digital and Japanese: 2.0 Dolby Digital
Subtitles: English SDH, French, Spanish, Japanese, Czech and Polish
Running Time: 105 minutes
Region: All Regions
Number of discs: 1
Studio: Warner Archive Collection
Andrew’s Blu-ray Review: The opening shot of ‘THE WRONG MAN,’ in which Alfred Hitchcock makes his customary appearance, immediately lets us know this is not going to be a typical Alfred Hitchcock film. Not only does Alfred Hitchcock come right out and say so, addressing the audience directly just as he did in his television series, but the shot itself, with an unidentifiable Alfred Hitchcock walking onto a dark sound stage lighted in extreme chiaroscuro, emphasises how different this is going to be from the escapist fare we expect from this director. Even though Alfred Hitchcock was closely identified with movies of suspense, he clearly liked a change of pace now and then, for he regularly dabbled in other genres than the suspense film, especially again the opening shot of ‘THE WRONG MAN,’ announces in the strongest visual terms that this movie is going to be Alfred Hitchcock's deepest and bleakest foray into the territory of “film noir.”
The theory that truth can be more striking than fiction is not too forcefully supported by the saga of ‘THE WRONG MAN’ which was unfolds before your very eyes. Alfred Hitchcock's long-standing fear of the police is what originally attracted him to a newspaper account of a family man wrongly identified as an armed robber. ‘THE WRONG MAN’ pays scrupulous attention to such things as the details of police procedure and the eventual apprehension of the real culprit before the conviction of the wrongly accused man Christopher Emmanuel "Manny" Balestrero [Henry Fonda, but after the stress has driven his wife Rose Balestrero [Vera Miles] to mental breakdown.
As has been noted, Alfred Hitchcock apparently was not interested primarily in developing tension. Maxwell Anderson and Angus MacPhail, his writers, capture the-flavour of natural dialogue used by their distressed principals and the technical conversation of the police and lawyers. Alfred Hitchcock’s camera and sound crews have caught the sights and sounds of such authentic locales as the Stork Club, the IND Roosevelt Avenue Station, Jackson Heights streets and homes, Queens Felony Court and jails and the police station and vans transporting the accused to jail.
In re-enacting the role of the real Christopher Emmanuel "Manny" Balestrero, Henry Fonda gives a disquietingly even portrayal. Only on rare occasions does he depart from a slightly stooped, trancelike attitude as he is arrested, interrogated, finger-printed, booked, jailed and bailed out. However, Vera Miles, as his wife whose mind snaps under this sudden shock, does convey a poignantly pitiful sense of fear of the appalling situation into which they have been cast.
The noted Shakespearean actor Anthony Quayle does a fine, incisive job as Henry Fonda's attorney, and Harold J. Stone and Charles Cooper, who make dispassionate but understanding detectives; Doreen Lang and Laurinda Barrett, as terrified witnesses; Esther Minciotti, as Henry Fonda's mother and Nehemiah Persoff, as his brother-in-law, add distinctive supporting stints. Alfred Hitchcock is not setting a precedent with ‘THE WRONG MAN.’ Alfred Hitchcock has done a fine and lucid job with the facts in ‘THE WRONG MAN’ but they have been made more important than the hearts and dramas of the people they affect.
The result is Alfred Hitchcock's most sombre film, unrelieved by his usual macabre humour; the black-and-white photography and the persecuted Henry Fonda's sharply chiselled features lend an impressive documentary feel. It's not generally rated among the master's best works, largely because of the intractability of the source material or Alfred Hitchcock's unwillingness to dramatize the events. But there's still plenty here for Hitchcockophiles: a Jesuitical strain, the man happened to be a devout Catholic, a complicity of guilt, as the wife irrationally comes to blame herself; and it's pure “film noir.”
‘THE WRONG MAN’ may be one of Alfred Hitchcock's most atypical films, perhaps even his most atypical film. Yet although Hitchcock moves as close as he ever would to the quasi-documentary realism and “film noir” sensibility of films with a similar subject like ‘Boomerang!’ or ‘Call Northside 777,’ and Alfred Hitchcock never goes all the way in that direction and certainly makes little attempt to give the illusion of fading into the background as did the Italian neorealist directors like Roberto Rossellini who in part inspired such an approach. Alfred Hitchcock's presence and his role as the guiding force behind the film, the authority of his personal stylistic vision, his need to control every detail to elicit a specific response from the audience and is very much in evidence and clearly marks ‘THE WRONG MAN’ as a product of The Master, an unusual one certainly, but nevertheless still identifiably as an Alfred Hitchcock film.
Blu-ray Video Quality – Warner Archive Collection of ‘THE WRONG MAN’ presents us with a stunningly remastered film on this Blu-ray disc, and ‘THE WRONG MAN’ is another stellar addition to the company's growing collection of catalogue classics. Here we have a brilliant 1080p encoded image transfer that is a definite step up from the previous inferior DVD release, where we get increased clarity and better contrast combining to create a smoother, and more immersive presentation. Grain is an essential aspect of the film's look, supplying essential texture, but it's well integrated, consistent, and never intrusive. The result is a strikingly organic, film-like appearance that heightens the intimacy of this true-life tale. In addition, and especially with an excellent grey scale variance pumps up detail levels and superior shadow delineation allows us to absorb all the subtleties of Robert Burks' stark and brooding cinematography and not a nick or scratches appear with this pristine print, and no noise or crush creeps into the picture. Alfred Hitchcock aficionados will surely cheer this terrific transfer that perfectly represents the director's intentions.
Blu-ray Audio Quality – Warner Archive Collection of ‘THE WRONG MAN’ presents this Blu-ray disc with an excellent 2.0 DTS-HD Master Audio experience that nicely renders all of the film's sonic nuances with ease. Shoe soles crunching against concrete, the rumble of subway trains in the tunnel, and the clicking of adding machines in the insurance office add vital atmosphere to the narrative while heightening aural interest. Excellent fidelity and a rich depth of tone boost the impact of the brilliant composer Bernard Herrmann's wonderful sharp, dramatic atmospheric music score, while all the soft-spoken dialogue is well prioritized and easy to comprehend. Any age-related defects, such as hiss, pops, or crackles, have been meticulously erased, and an expansive dynamic scale keeps distortion at bay. Sound always plays an important role in Alfred Hitchcock films, and this superior track properly showcases all the carefully integrated audio touches.
Blu-ray Special Features and Extras:
Special Feature: Making-Of Documentary: Guilt Trip: Hitchcock and ‘THE WRONG MAN’  [480i] [1.33:1] [20:17] This comprehensive and very absorbing piece features comments from directors Peter Bogdanovich and Richard Franklin ['Psycho II'], TCM host Robert Osborne, film critic Richard Schickel, and the film's art director, Paul Sylbert, plus Richard Franklin [Director, Producer and Writer] and Christopher Husted [Manager of Bernard Herrmann Estate]. We find out right at the start of this documentary from Peter Bogdanovich, that when Alfred Hitchcock at the age of 5 years old, was very naughty, and so his father would teach him a lesson, was sent to a police station with a note telling the policeman at the desk to put your Hitchcock in a cell for 5 minutes to teach him a lesson, but of course he thought it was an eternity and always throughout his adult life always had a fear of policemen, which of course helped him when directing the film ‘THE WRONG MAN,’ and make it one of his most dramatic film so far in his filmmaking career. All the participants praise ‘THE WRONG MAN’ and discuss the topic of Alfred Hitchcock and the film's sombre nature and overt religious symbolism, and we also find out that Alfred Hitchcock loved to investigate real police cases of ordinary guys who are wrongly arrested and turn them into his personal films, and Robert Osborne feels this is why this film is one of his best dramatic film, especially reflecting life in a big city, especially in America and of course was helped to make ‘THE WRONG MAN’ such a brilliant film, in having the equally brilliant Maxwell Anderson and Angus MacPhail, who did the screenplay that helped Alfred Hitchcock direct a film with great skill in making it the perfect “film noire” presentation of total brilliance, that also helped Alfred Hitchcock do a very precise storyboard, so that every shot was not wasted and helped to stop the studio heads interfering in not being able to re-editing the film, and in doing so it created so many brilliant frame by frame innovative shots. It also helped by having contributions with the very professional Henry Fonda, who say was a perfect gentleman on and off the set, and also was a very intelligent man and loved to paint and has had several exhibitions of his paintings. There was also great praise from director Richard Franklin of Vera Miles who felt her acting was totally superb, and also made an appearance in his film ‘Psycho II’ and reprieved her performance in the original ‘Psycho’ film. There was of course equal praise for the impact of the brilliant Bernard Herrmann's jazzy atmospheric music score throughout ‘THE WRONG MAN’ film, Alfred Hitchcock loved and loved using sound and music where it mattered most to enhance the atmospheric tension of the film, and of course seeing Alfred Hitchcock unique cameo at the start of the film, was the only time you get to see him in the film and not his usual cameo appearances in all his other films, because he felt it would be too distracting to such a serious subject. Rare on-set photos and examples of Alfred Hitchcock's storyboards, as well as several film clips, enhance this perceptive salute to one of Alfred Hitchcock's lesser known and underrated brilliant film. One thing we find out is that originally it was going to be filmed on location in New York, but at the time of filming it was the height of a very severe winter and Alfred Hitchcock hated the freezing cold, so most of the location work was in New York, but then decided to move everything to California to finish off all the interior shots, that Alfred Hitchcock gave great praise to all workers who built the sets. One bit of information I was shocked about, is that when the film was released in the cinemas, it was not very successful, which makes me feel very angry, as it is a totally brilliant dramatic atmospheric “film noir” Alfred Hitchcock film, and to have people have such a negative attitude at the time was sacrilege, and they must of viewed a different film to the one I watched, but I suppose the reason the film was not a success, because it was not the same style as his other films, that had the same mysterious genre style of directing, whereas this film was told like a real life drama and Alfred Hitchcock could not deviate from the real human tragic story and I for one totally disagree with all the people who gave it such a negative review of the time of its release in the cinema. So all in all this is a really nice informative special feature and also totally fascinating and one not to be missed.
Theatrical Trailer  [1080p] [1.85:1] [2:33] This is the Original Theatrical Trailer for the film ‘THE WRONG MAN.’ This is a totally brilliant presentation, but the equally impressive director Alfred Hitchcock, as he often did later in his career, and narrates the film's original preview to great effect, which highlights the gravity and realism of the subject matter, but most important makes this brilliant trailer so atmospheric and so dramatic, it makes you want to view the film to find who is the guilty one.
Finally, THE WRONG MAN’  may not have been one of Alfred Hitchcock's signature films, but this simple, meticulous examination of the devastating impact of mistaken identity on a typical middle class family is a fascinating change of pace for the Master of Suspense. Quiet, understated, but bursting with honest emotion and a gritty realism not usually associated with the director, the movie explores relatable themes and taps into universal fears about the police and an imperfect justice system that often fails its citizens and destroys innocent lives. Warner Archive Collection's Blu-ray presentation features top-notch video and audio transfers and an absorbing special feature, all of which enhances the impact of this well-acted, underrated personal drama from the “Master of Suspense” Mr. Alfred Hitchcock. Highly Recommended!
Andrew C. Miller – Your Ultimate No.1 Film Fan
Le Cinema Paradiso
WARE, United Kingdom
THE WRONG MAN's story might have escaped Hitchcock's attention had Balestrero's plight not been the subject of a magazine article by famed playwright Maxwell Anderson. Thematically it's easy to see why the story appealed to Hitchcock, who had always been sensitive to "wrong man" concerns and potential abuses of authority figures. The viewer can tell it's a Hitchcock story through his use of evocative Bernard Herrmann music and the excellent playing by Fonda, Miles and others. The screenplay did not soft-pedal or cosmetize the real events including Mrs. Balestrero's mental breakdown in the wake of financial struggles and the topsy-turvy environment she and her husband were confronted with. As the DVD Commentary points out, widescreen location shooting of mid-Fifties Manhattan offers realistic insights into a bygone world of mom-and-pop shops, El trains and midrise neighborhoods. I strongly recommend THE WRONG MAN, especially given its budget price and its top-notch Commentary.
By modern standards the abuses that the real Manny Balestrero suffered in the early Fifties seem happily a product of the past, until one remembers that scores of (largely black) Chicagoans have been, and are still, being taken off the streets with similar lack of due process and held at a semi-secret location that was once part of the Sears, Roebuck headquarters on Homan Avenue. Can it happen here? It did, and still does.
Most recent customer reviews
EXCELLENT! EXCELLENT! EXCELLENT! EXCELLENT!