Shadow of a Doubt

1943, Mystery & thriller/Crime, 1h 48m

50 Reviews 10,000+ Ratings

What to know

critics consensus

Alfred Hitchcock's earliest classic -- and his own personal favorite -- deals its flesh-crawling thrills as deftly as its finely shaded characters. Read critic reviews

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Movie Info

Uncle Charlie (Joseph Cotten) visits his relatives in Santa Rosa. He is a very charming man, but his niece slowly realizes that he is wanted for murder and he soon recognizes her suspicions. Although one of the suspected murderers is killed and the case is considered closed, she still has her suspicions.

Cast & Crew

Teresa Wright
Young Charlie Newton
Joseph Cotten
Charlie Oakley
Hume Cronyn
Herbie Hawkins
Henry Travers
Joseph Newton
Wallace Ford
Fred Saunders
Irving Bacon
Station Master
Charles Bates
Roger Newton
Clarence Muse
Railroad Porter
Minerva Urecal
Mrs. Henderson (clerk at telegraph office) (uncredited)
Isabel Randolph
Mrs. Margaret Green (uncredited)
Eily Malyon
Librarian (uncredited)
Thornton Wilder
Screenwriter
Sally Benson
Screenwriter
Alma Reville
Screenwriter
Dimitri Tiomkin
Original Music
Milton Carruth
Film Editing
Robert F. Boyle
Art Director
John B. Goodman
Art Director
Russell A. Gausman
Set Decoration
Edward R. Robinson
Set Decoration
Adrian
Costume Design
Vera West
Costume Design
Ralph Slosser
Second Assistant Director
William Tummel
Assistant Director
Robert Pritchard
Sound Technician
Charles Previn
Music Director
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Critic Reviews for Shadow of a Doubt

Audience Reviews for Shadow of a Doubt

  • Mar 03, 2022
    Extremely disappointing.
    familiar s Super Reviewer
  • May 28, 2017
    Hitchcock said this was his favorite film, and there is a quiet evil about it that makes it truly horrifying. Uncle Charlie (Joseph Cotten) is on the run from the law on the East Coast, and he settles in with his sister and her family in Santa Rosa. Trouble is just behind him though, and it gets worse when his niece (also 'Charlie', named after him, and played by Teresa Wright) begins to suspect him of being the "Merry Widow Murderer". I considered a slightly higher rating, but thought the pace in the first half of the movie was a little slow. Some of the tension is also missing because we're pretty darn sure Uncle Charlie is guilty. On the other hand, there is a real small town feeling to this setting, helped in no doubt by Thornton Wilder being one of the screenwriters, and the characters of Charlie's father (Henry Travers) and his friend (Hume Cronyn) passing the time by talking about the perfect murder are absolutely priceless. The second half, including the increasing revelation of Uncle Charlie's dark views of humanity and the lengths to which he will go to protect himself, is what make the film so sinister. As the movie came out during WWII, it seems to have a direct parallel to the evil leaders loose in the world, particularly in the film's final scene.
    Antonius B Super Reviewer
  • Mar 29, 2016
    The title's doubt grows in us much before it is planted inside the character's mind halfway through this superbly-written story, which is a testament to how this tense, suspenseful mystery is slowly and carefully built in what is one of Hitchcock's most steadily-paced thrillers.
    Carlos M Super Reviewer
  • Aug 04, 2015
    Overrated Hitchcock thriller with excellent performances from the entire cast including Joseph Cotten as a psychopath, Teresa Wright as the niece that grows suspicious of her uncle. The film fascinates throughout, but critics seems to overlook a number of plot imperfections that give me much more than a shadow of a doubt that this is Hitchcock's most brilliant film as some critics contend. Still worth the look especially for the staging of certain scenes between Cotten and Wright.
    Aldo G Super Reviewer

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