The Desperate Hours

Critics Consensus

No consensus yet.

86%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 7

79%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 2,785
User image

Tap to review this movie

  • User image

    Super Reviewer

    Rate this movie

    Oof, that was Rotten.

    Meh, it passed the time.

    It’s good – I’d recommend it.

    Awesome!

    So Fresh: Absolute Must See!

    What did you think of the movie? (optional)



  • You're almost there! Just confirm how you got your ticket.

  • User image

    Super Reviewer

    Step 2 of 2

    How did you get your ticket?

    • Fandango

    • AMC (Coming Soon)

      We won’t be able to verify your ticket today, but it’s great to know for the future.

    • Cinemark (Coming Soon)

      We won’t be able to verify your ticket today, but it’s great to know for the future.

    • Regal (Coming Soon)

      We won’t be able to verify your ticket today, but it’s great to know for the future.

    • Bought somewhere else

    You're almost there! Just confirm how you got your ticket.

  • User image

    Super Reviewer

    Rate this movie

    Oof, that was Rotten.

    Meh, it passed the time.

    It’s good – I’d recommend it.

    Awesome!

    So Fresh: Absolute Must See!

    What did you think of the movie? (optional)

  • How did you get your ticket?

    • Fandango

    • AMC (Coming Soon)

      We won’t be able to verify your ticket today, but it’s great to know for the future.

    • Cinemark (Coming Soon)

      We won’t be able to verify your ticket today, but it’s great to know for the future.

    • Regal (Coming Soon)

      We won’t be able to verify your ticket today, but it’s great to know for the future.

    • Bought somewhere else

Where to watch

Movie Info

Based on the novel and play by Joseph Hayes, which in turn was inspired by an actual event, The Desperate Hours is the prototypical "family-trapped-by-criminals" drama. Escaped convicts Humphrey Bogart, Robert Middleton and Dewey Martin, seeking an appropriate hideout until they can make contact with their money supply, deliberately choose the suburban home of Fredric March and his family. The cold-blooded Bogart wants no trouble with the police, and he knows he can cower a family with children into cooperating with him. The convict orders March, his wife Martha Scott, and their children Richard Eyer and Mary Murphy, to go about their normal activities so as not to arouse suspicion. Young Eyer, upset that March won't lift a hand against Bogart, assumes that his father is a coward. The authorities are alerted when March, at Bogart's behest, draws money for the convict's getaway from the bank. Pushed to the breaking point, March begins subtly turning the tables on the convicts. Bogart's character in Desperate Hours was originally written for a much younger man, which explains why Paul Newman was able to play the part in the original Broadway production. The film was slated to co-star Bogart with his old pal Spencer Tracy, but this plan fell through when the two actors couldn't agree on who would get top billing. Desperate Hours was remade in 1991 with Mickey Rourke in the Bogart role. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

Cast

Critic Reviews for The Desperate Hours

All Critics (7) | Fresh (6) | Rotten (1)

Audience Reviews for The Desperate Hours

  • Apr 24, 2010
    Skip the remake & stick with the original
    Brody M Super Reviewer
  • Jun 23, 2009
    Classic...great movie even with Bogarts singular acting style....
    Barry L Super Reviewer
  • Nov 05, 2007
    A dense cat and mouse game featuring old Bogart, still pulling it off, maybe not as menacing as he could have, but it is his charcters rogue-like ambiguity that carries the movie. A hostage drama at its core, the movie features a many characters and depicts their conflicting interests. Of course, the increasing tension between the captors and the glooming disaster is what fires up the heat of suspense. Very good. HX
    Henrik S Super Reviewer
  • Aug 09, 2007
    William Wyler's <i>The Desperate Hours</i> is unnerving because it reminds us that no one is completely safe from the horrors of sociopathic criminals, not even average, Leave-it-to-Beaver families living in middleclass suburbia. Wyler brings crime into the living room, what could very well be YOUR living room, and lets you sweat it out along with the captive Hilliard family. Humphrey Bogart's character might not be his most villainous role, but he's definitely a miscreant and unempathetic personality. This isn't my favorite Wyler film or, for that matter, even my favorite Bogart vehicle, but it's still a good movie with enough suspense and tension to keep you on the edge of your seat.
    Kevin S Super Reviewer

The Desperate Hours Quotes

There are no approved quotes yet for this movie.

News & Features