Touch of Evil (1958) – Movie Review

April 27, 2014 7:15 pm by
Touch of Evil Movie Poster - Big Fat Kill


A stark, perverse story of murder, kidnapping, and police corruption in a Mexican border town.


  • Charlton Heston - Mike Vargas
  • Janet Leigh - Nicky Calhoun
  • Orson Welles - Francie Tobin
  • Joseph Calleia - Police Sergeant Pete Menzies


  • Orson Welles

Run Time

  • 95 min


Orson Welles blah, blah, genius, blah, blah, Touch of Evil is a classic, blah blah. Except the fantastic opening tracking shot and some of the camera angles Touch of Evil is excruciatingly cheesy. The way the characters talk about drugs shows absolutely no research whatsoever (yes it’s the 50’s but supposed tough hoodlums would know that weed isn’t the same as heroin) and the way Heston’s character acts throughout the film concerning his wifes well being is just baffling. Plus the wife character played by Janet Leigh makes some bizarre decisions; such as following criminals because they have a letter for her husband and the scene where she removes a red hot light bulb without flinching and throws it through an open window are just bizarre and full of incredibly poor plotting and all this is by Orson Welles.

I won’t go into too much detail about the acting sufficed to say that Welles is head and shoulders above the rest and for me as in any movie I’ve ever seen him in Charlton Heston just wasn’t a good actor.

Massively overrated movie and I love Welles, Citizen Kane and The Lady of Shanghai are in my all time favourite movie lists but Touch of Evil was a huge let down.

2.5 Stars (2.5 / 5)

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