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A Perfect Murder (1998)



Average Rating: 6.2/10
Reviews Counted: 51
Fresh: 28 | Rotten: 23

A slick little thriller that relies a bit too much on surprise events to generate suspense.


Average Rating: 6.1/10
Critic Reviews: 14
Fresh: 8 | Rotten: 6

A slick little thriller that relies a bit too much on surprise events to generate suspense.



liked it
Average Rating: 3.1/5
User Ratings: 72,247

My Rating

Movie Info

A Perfect Murder is based on Frederick Knott's play Dial M for Murder, filmed by Alfred Hitchcock in 1954. Married to commodities trader Stephen Taylor (Michael Douglas), Emily Bradford (Gwyneth Paltrow) is romantically involved with artist David Shaw (Viggo Mortensen). Aware of this affair, Stephen researches David's past, visits his loft studio, and informs David that he knows about his aliases, jail sentences, and various cons and scams directed at rich women. Then Stephen offers David


Mystery & Suspense

Nov 3, 1998

Universal / Warner Bros.

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All Critics (64) | Top Critics (17) | Fresh (28) | Rotten (23) | DVD (11)

...a fast-paced thriller that probably will leave Alfred Hitchcock aficionados mourning its shallowness -- but not until after they've enjoyed an adrenaline rush.

November 6, 2002 Full Review Source: Minneapolis Star Tribune
Minneapolis Star Tribune
Top Critic IconTop Critic

None of the amusement gained in watching the performances, unfortunately, amounts to much, as the script, in a desperate attempt to lend action interest to the original, static, puzzle plot, compounds surprise turn after surprise turn.

April 12, 2002 Full Review Source: Globe and Mail
Globe and Mail
Top Critic IconTop Critic

What the film lacks is suspense, surprise (the new ending is a dud) and passion.

June 5, 2001
Rolling Stone
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A Perfect Murder begins better than it ends, and the pleasures it offers turn out to be more of a transitory nature.

February 14, 2001 Full Review Source: Los Angeles Times
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Loaded with dramatic irony in the first half and with tension in the second, the film gives Douglas another chance to do his slick, sinister best; Paltrow a chance to extend her emotional range; and Mortensen a chance to play the chameleon.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Detroit News
Detroit News
Top Critic IconTop Critic

I think it works like a nasty little machine to keep us involved and disturbed; my attention never strayed, and one of the elements I liked was the way Paltrow's character isn't sentimentalized.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Chicago Sun-Times
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

slick and twisted tale provides two delicious hours of intrigue and mystery, along with some unexpected wit and black comedy...

July 2, 2003 Full Review Source: Kalamazoo Gazette
Kalamazoo Gazette

...the film is so lacking in anything original that it is hardly worth recommending.

December 8, 2002 Full Review Source: Film Threat
Film Threat

...simpers along with relatively little suspense or thrills...

June 5, 2002 Full Review Source: Boxoffice Magazine
Boxoffice Magazine

A resolução não faz jus às duas primeiras horas de projeção.

May 31, 2002 Full Review Source: Cinema em Cena
Cinema em Cena

A streamlined, high gloss, touch-tone remake of the lesser-Hitchcock classic. Harken ye back to the days of rotary dialing.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Nitrate Online
Nitrate Online

A thriller without much genuine suspense isn't much of a thriller even if the atmospherics are dead-on.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Internet Reviews
Internet Reviews

This unscary thriller also suffers from dreadful miscasting, not the least of which is pairing Gwyneth Paltrow and Michael Douglas as the leads.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Deseret News, Salt Lake City
Deseret News, Salt Lake City

Somewhere, Alfred Hitchcock is yawning.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Film Journal International
Film Journal International

Paltrow, too, is generally a good actress but there is a paint-by-numbers quality to her work here.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: San Francisco Examiner
San Francisco Examiner

As is the case with too many remakes, the slick new take falls short.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source:

...the story offers so many lapses in logic, so many plot holes and so much dialogue to howl for that there's plenty to talk about afterward.

January 1, 2000
Jam! Movies

Davis weaves a gorgeously lush film, charged with high tension, but the listless script renders his efforts alarmingly mundane.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: E! Online
E! Online

While the resolution may never be in doubt, how the film arrives there is a constant source of pleasure.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Empire Magazine
Empire Magazine

Audience Reviews for A Perfect Murder

Modern version of Hitchcock movie 'Dial M for Murder'. A rich wife Emily (Gwyneth) has an affair with a shady artist (Viggo). Her husband Steven (Michael) finds out and blackmails his wife's lover into killing her. It would have been the perfect murder but it does not all go to plan. Great cast. Great plot. Viggo actually painted the paintings in the loft.
November 4, 2012
Candy Rose

Super Reviewer

A typical mid-90's thriller with the murders and the twists and the mystique and the sexual tension. But hey....I like the mid-90's thrillers...they get the money rolling. Pretty okay movie.
September 18, 2011
Martin Sahlin

Super Reviewer

I really wanted to enjoy this movie. It looks amazing on paper, but it just wasn't anything special. The plot started off quite nice, but became an incredibly cheesy and typical ending. I am extremely sick of movies that have to end with the good guy/girl winning. I think the idea that you can remake Dial M for Murder and make it better or even on par is an utter joke. Even with actors like Michael Douglas and Viggo Mortensen, you can't top Hitchcock.
January 6, 2010

Super Reviewer

A very good thriller with a great well established cast. Pity David Suchet didn't get a bit more screen time though. Has some good twists but nothing you don't really expect to be honest. Definitely worth a watch though.
September 19, 2009

Super Reviewer

Movies Like A Perfect Murder

    1. Steven Taylor: It should appear to be spur of the moment, stupid. I always thought bludgeon has a nice 'spur of the moment' sound.
    – Submitted by Chris R (22 months ago)
View all quotes (1)

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