This French filmization of Dostoyevsky's Crime and Punishment stars Pierre Blanchar as sociopathic student Raskolnikov and Harry Baur as humanist detective Porfiry. Believing himself intellectually above the law, Raskolnikov kills a despicable old shopkeeper. He is certain that he has no conscience to bother him, but he is eventually forced to confront himself by the kindly but diligent Porfiry. The like-vintage Hollywood version of Crime and Punishment ended with Raskolnikov's surrender. The French version (original title: Crime et Chatiment) adheres to the original novel, detailing the student's lifelong search for forgiveness after he is released from prison.
by Hal Erickson synopsis