Synopsis by Hal Erickson
Crime Without Passion is an odd, almost existential murder yarn. Famed attorney Claude Rains, incensed that his mistress (Margo) has been seeing other men, kills the girl--or at least thinks he does. Rains believes he is "above" such irritations as conscience and morality, and calmly arranges to cover his crime, using his knowledge of the law to escape detection. But Rains cannot truly escape from himself, and is cajoled by a surprising turn of events to break down and confess. Crime without Passion was ostensibly directed by Ben Hecht, who cowrote the screenplay with his longtime partner Charles McArthur, but most of the actual direction was the responsibility of cameraman Lee Garmes. Watch for cameo appearances by Fanny Brice, by MacArthur's wife Helen Hayes, and by Hecht and MacArthur themselves.
defense-attorney, confession [criminal], cover-up, mistress, morals, murder