Witness for the Prosecution

Critics Consensus

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100%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 31

95%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 8,914
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Movie Info

An unusual murder case tempts an ailing barrister back into action in this courtroom drama based on an Agatha Christie play.

Cast

Tyrone Power
as Leonard Vole
Marlene Dietrich
as Christine Helm Vole
Charles Laughton
as Sir Wilfrid Robarts
Elsa Lanchester
as Miss Plimsoll
John Williams (II)
as Brogan-Moore
Ian Wolfe
as Carter
Norma Varden
as Mrs. French
Philip Tonge
as Insp. Hearne
Ruta Lee
as Diana
Molly Roden
as Miss McHugh
Ottola Nesmith
as Miss Johnson
Marjorie Eaton
as Miss O'Brien
J. Pat O'Malley
as Shorts Salesman
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News & Interviews for Witness for the Prosecution

Critic Reviews for Witness for the Prosecution

All Critics (31) | Top Critics (5) | Fresh (31)

  • His theatrical mise-en-scene -- his proscenium framing -- serves the material well, as does Charles Laughton's bombastic portrayal of the defense attorney.

    Aug 15, 2007 | Full Review…
  • [Marlene Dietrich] was never better than she is here.

    Jan 30, 2007 | Rating: 5/5 | Full Review…

    Kevin Maher

    Times (UK)
    Top Critic
  • ...the film's origins as an Agatha Christie novel and play, combine to give the movie a heavy -- almost stolid -- theatrical flavour.

    Jan 26, 2006 | Full Review…
    Time Out
    Top Critic
  • A courtroom meller played engagingly and building evenly to a surprising and arousing, albeit tricked-up, climax...

    Feb 13, 2001 | Full Review…

    Variety Staff

    Variety
    Top Critic
  • And the air in the courtroom fairly crackles with emotional electricity, until that staggering surprise in the last reel.

    Jan 1, 2000 | Rating: 4.5/5 | Full Review…
  • it's Laughton who is afforded free reign to explore his character and demonstrates impeccable comic timing.

    Oct 30, 2018 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Witness for the Prosecution

  • Sep 06, 2016
    Excellent courtroom drama. Another awesome classic.
    Stephen S Super Reviewer
  • May 29, 2014
    Tyrone Power and Marlene Dietrich are thoroughly entertaining in this romp through Agatha Christie's work. A lesson to be learned for more modern court room dramas.
    John B Super Reviewer
  • Apr 23, 2014
    The star here is definitely Charles Laughton, who steals the show and makes each one of his lines sound memorable in this delightfully witty and clever plot by Agatha Christie adapted by Billy Wilder into a near perfect piece of thought-provoking entertainment.
    Carlos M Super Reviewer
  • Oct 24, 2013
    The reason so many plays have been turned into movies is simple: the work has been pre-tested and approved in front of live audiences, tweaked and re-tweaked. And it's easy to see the payoff for that preliminary process here where each character and their work is full and complete. Billy Wilder directs and co-wrote, adapted from the play. Charles Laughton, Elsa Lancaster, Dietrich, Power, the whole cast does a first rate job in this wonder of entertaining misdirection. Superb.
    Kevin M. W Super Reviewer

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