Directed by Orson Welles • 1958 • United States
Starring Charlton Heston, Janet Leigh, Orson Welles
Orson Welles’s sublimely sordid noir masterpiece opens with the most explosive tracking shot in all of cinema and ends with one of the medium’s most immortal lines (delivered, unforgettably, by Marlene Dietrich as a shady madam). In between is a cascade of pulp pleasures as a Mexican prosecutor (Charlton Heston) and his American wife (Janet Leigh) find themselves caught up in a murder investigation while on their honeymoon in a sleazy border town. At the center of it all is Welles’s towering performance as the monstrously corrupt cop Hank Quinlan—“some kind of a man” if ever there was one.