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Wrong Man, the [Import]
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MANNY BALLESTERO IS AN HONEST HARDWORKING MUSICIAN AT NEW YORK'SSTORK CLUB. WHEN HIS WIFE NEEDS MONEY FOR DENTAL TREATMENT, MANNY GOES TO THE LOCAL INSURANCE OFFICE TO BORROW ON HER POLICY. EMPLOYEES AT THE OFFICE MISTAKE HIM FOR A HOLD-UP MAN WHO ROBBED THEM THE YEAR BEFORE AND THE POLICE ARE CALLED.
Alfred Hitchcock was fond of telling the story about how his father discouraged his son from even the slightest criminal impulse by having young Alfred locked in a police holding cell for a brief period--a terrifying experience Hitchcock never forgot. Much of the fear from that childhood incident resonates through The Wrong Man, which is unique among Hitchcock's films in that it is based entirely on a factual case that occurred in New York City in January 1953. As Hitchcock states in a shadowy prologue, authenticity was his primary goal--including the use of actual names and locations from the case--and the film gains considerable power from Hitchcock's semi-documentary approach (a film noir style that was still in vogue when Hitchcock shot this film in 1957).
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 --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
‘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.Read more ›
This is Alfred Hitchcock AND Henry Fonda and Vera Miles, at their very best.
The acting is wonderful and believable, really draws you into the story, scene after scene. Loved the way this was filmed as well, added so much to the atmosphere throughout this film.
This was quite different from most of the Hitchcock films I've seen, more of a human element to it overall, more emotional and although their is definitely horror at what this man and his family went through, due to a case of mistaken identity, for me it was more of a poignant love/family type story overall. The scenes with Henry and his onscreen sons in particular, actually brought tears to my eyes, so very touching.
this story also makes you realize just how WRONG the justice system can go, when it comes to judging a person,based on so called "facts" that they have to work with. The witnesses had it so wrong about this man but based on what they believed, he entered into a nightmare that was all too real and that had awful implications for his family, particularly his wife, long after he was vindicated.
Don't miss this one if you are a fan of Hitchcock films or maybe even if you aren't. This is one of the best films I've ever seen from the 40s and 50s. Highly recommended!
I would consider this film a great tragedy.
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 !
Most recent customer reviews
Story drags out and sad ending for the wife at the end of the movie.Published 15 months ago by G. R.
very good movie, something different. henry is always good.as alfred hitchcock is for his work . sharp; clear transfer highly recommended enjoy / fearless frank signing offPublished on Nov. 25 2004 by Frank A. Emery
The plot of this film was a recurring nightmare that Alfred Hitchcock apparently tried to get out of his system with a starkly documentary type of movie that didn't go down too... Read morePublished on July 10 2004
I hope the DVD comes out really soon. "The Wrong Man" is a wonderful film filled with drama, suspense, and action. Go see it!Published on June 14 2003
"The Wrong Man" is wonderful, it deserves five stars. The movie stars Henry Fonda and Vera Miles. They are both great actors. This film is actually true. Read morePublished on Dec 9 2002
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