Crime of Passion (1956) - IMDb
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Crime of Passion (1956)

Not Rated | | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir | 8 November 1957 (Finland)
Kathy leaves the newspaper business to marry homicide detective Bill but is frustrated by his lack of ambition and the banality of life in the suburbs. Her drive to advance Bill's career soon takes her down a dangerous path.


Gerd Oswald


Jo Eisinger (original story and screenplay)




Complete credited cast:
Barbara Stanwyck ... Kathy Doyle
Sterling Hayden ... Bill Doyle
Raymond Burr ... Tony Pope
Fay Wray ... Alice Pope
Virginia Grey ... Sara Alidos
Royal Dano ... Charlie Alidos
Robert Griffin ... Detective James
Dennis Cross Dennis Cross ... Detective Jules
Jay Adler ... Nalence
Stuart Whitman ... Laboratory Technician
Malcolm Atterbury ... Officer Spitz
Robert Quarry ... Reporter
Gail Bonney ... Mrs. London
Joe Conley ... Delivery Boy


Kathy is a smart and tough 1950's advice columnist at a San Francisco newspaper, with her name plastered on billboards all over the city. One day, Bill Doyle, a Los Angeles detective, walks into her office - it is instant attraction. After marrying Bill, Kathy gives up her career and becomes a homemaker. However, she is not your typical 1950's homemaker. After hosting several cocktail parties in their San Fernando Valley home, she realizes that Bill is content with his position, and shows no ambition in furthering himself. Kathy will not sit idly by while everyone around her is "moving up in the world". She personally takes upon herself the task of pushing Bill's career along, even if it comes down to murder. Written by Kelly

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Her husband was lying so close... the gun was even closer... now she was only one sin away from the Crime of Passion. See more »


Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Did You Know?


The last film noir roles of both Barbara Stanwyck and Raymond Burr. It also comes towards the ends of their film careers in general. Both would soon transition to working primarily in television and appearing only occasionally in movies. Burr notably moved from the villainous characters he often portrayed in films to long-running success as the heroic defense attorney in Perry Mason (1957). See more »


When Kathy calls Alice from the phone booth and hears she is leaving for Honolulu, the reflection of the cameraman is seen all through the scene on the back window of the booth (above left Kathy's head), and it moves as the camera pulls back. See more »


Kathy Doyle: I hope all your socks have holes in them and I can sit for hours and hours darning them.
Bill Doyle: I um, I have other plans for you.
See more »

User Reviews

Strong Performances but Weak Story
28 December 2012 | by Michael_ElliottSee all my reviews

Crime of Passion (1957)

** (out of 4)

Sussessful woman Kathy Ferguson (Barbara Stanwyck) gives up her career when she falls for a police officer (Sterling Hayden). The two are eventually married but the wife grows tired of her husband not working harder to accomplish more so she decides to strike up a relationship with his superior (Raymond Burr) in hopes to help the husband's career but everything backfires. CRIME OF PASSION struck me as a rather far-fetched and over-dramatic story that never really grabbed my attention. There's no question that the entire cast is in fine form but at the same time I just couldn't get caught up in their story simply because I found it to be rather silly and at times poorly handled. I think one of the biggest issues for me was the Stanwyck character and the various things she does throughout the picture. I mean, it seems like this hard-working woman wouldn't have thrown her job away to begin with and it seems like she would have realized that this man wasn't going to be her match. The entire plot with the Burr character is just so far-fetched that I had a hard time believing such a smart woman would sink this low and be fooled so badly. Stanwyck is certainly believable in the part but then again she's always strong in these type of roles. Hayden was also very believable in his part and it was nice seeing Fay Wray in her supporting bit. The standout is clearly Burr who seems to be having a great time playing this low-life character.

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Release Date:

8 November 1957 (Finland) See more »

Also Known As:

Love Story See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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