Touch of Evil

Touch of Evil

Orson Welles (1958)

12A Certificate


Our Score
Owing to a misunderstanding between star Charlton Heston and producer Albert Zugsmith, Orson Welles not only appeared in this crime thriller, as corrupt, corpulent cop Hank Quinlan, but also ended up directing it. In this way, Welles made the film that virtually capped a style he had helped create: you could say that the span of film noir started with Citizen Kane and ended with this movie. Originally released by the studio as a co-feature, this has been revealed by time and re-editing to be one of the great American masterworks. It's a deeply disturbing melodrama, pitting Welles against Mexican investigator Heston, which rivets an audience from its now famed opening title sequence to its grisly finale. The composition, dialogue and characterisations are first-rate - this is what cinema can and should be capable of, and it took the genius of Welles the director to turn the cheap novel Badge of Evil into this terrifically entertaining study in depravity.


A Mexican narcotics investigator on honeymoon investigates the murder of a powerful developer. However, his unwanted involvement in the case places his wife in danger and brings him into conflict with a crooked police chief. Crime drama, directed by and starring Orson Welles. With Charlton Heston, Janet Leigh, Marlene Dietrich and Joseph Calleia.

Cast & Crew

Ramon Miguel "Mike" Vargas Charlton Heston
Susan Vargas Janet Leigh
Hank Quinlan Orson Welles
Pete Menzies Joseph Calleia
"Uncle" Joe Grandi Akim Tamiroff
Marcia Linnekar Joanna Moore
Adair Ray Collins
The night man Dennis Weaver
Pancho Valentin de Vargas
Schwartz Mort Mills
Manuelo Sanchez Victor Millan
Risto Lalo Rios
Tanya Marlene Dietrich
Strip club owner Zsa Zsa Gabor
Coroner Joseph Cotten
Gang leader Mercedes McCambridge
TBC Keenan Wynn
Director Orson Welles
see more

Other Information

Language: EnglishBlack and whiteTheatrical distributor: BFIGuidance: Contains some violence.Available on: video, DVD and Blu-rayReleased on: 10 Jul 2015