Henry Fonda is perfectly cast as the financially struggling nightclub musician who is mistakenly identified as a robber when he attempts to cash in his wife's life-insurance policy to pay for her much-needed dental work. Vera Miles is equally superb as the suffering wife, who ultimately cracks under the pressure of her husband's wrongful accusation and the drawn-out process of proving his innocence. Through all of this, Hitchcock pays close attention to the mundane details of police procedure, intensifying Fonda's desperation and the narrative tension that was Hitchcock's directorial trademark. As it happens, the strict adherence to factual detail--no matter how absurd or incredible--also renders The Wrong Man somewhat weaker than Hitchcock's classic plots, since in this case truth is decidedly stranger than fiction. Nevertheless, this is still a riveting film that fits quite nicely alongside Hitchcock's better-known films of the 1950s. (Interesting trivia: Miles--who would later appear in Psycho, was Hitchcock's first choice for the Kim Novak role in Vertigo, and Hitchcock was vocally annoyed when Miles's pregnancy prevented her from taking the role that could have made her a star.) --Jeff Shannon
With Fonda's superb low key style you will find he isnt acting at all.. he IS Manny Balestrero !. Fonda's inner rage is completely under control..and one wonders if it will ever explode..this fact sets up the tense drama to a breaking point.
The emotional breaking point is visited on his wife played by Vera Miles. The films plot has overtones of another film called " Call Northside 777" with the Police on one side and the rest of the characters on the other.
One of a kind film experience !