Beyond all doubt

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German title Beyond all doubt
Original title Beyond a Reasonable Doubt
Country of production United States
original language English
Publishing year 1956
length 80 minutes
Age rating FSK 16
Director Fritz Lang
script Douglas Morrow
production Bert E. Friedlob
music Herschel Burke Gilbert
camera William E. Snyder
cut Gene Fowler Jr.

Beyond doubt (Original title: Beyond a Reasonable Doubt ) is an American feature film by Fritz Lang from the year 1956 . Beyond all doubt , Fritz Lang's last Hollywood production was. He then returned to Germany until 1960.


Newspaper publisher Austin Spencer is a staunch opponent of the death penalty. In particular, he wants to convince the public of the questionability of circumstantial trials.

When a young nightclub dancer, Patty Gray, is found dead, he convinces his colleague and future son-in-law Tom Garrett, against his initial opposition, to a daring plan. Together they lay a multitude of leads that should point to Tom Garrett as the perpetrator. At the same time, the two men document that the traces were laid afterwards, i.e. only after the crime. This is achieved, for example, by simultaneously recording a current daily newspaper on the photo with the wrong track.

The first part of the plan works. Suspicion is directed towards Tom, he is arrested and charged with murder. The public prosecutor Roy Thompson, known as a hardliner, succeeds in convincing the jury of the guilt of the accused with the help of the many circumstantial evidence.

Now, according to the plan, the publisher should appear with the documentation and prove Tom's innocence. However, Spencer dies on the way to court in a car accident that also destroys all evidence of Tom's innocence.

Tom is convicted and ends up on death row. His assurances that all traces were deliberately put wrong find no faith. Only his fiancée and daughter of the publisher, Susan Spencer, is still with him. At the last second, she finds her father's notes that prove the plan of the two men, and so she can prevent Tom from falling victim to the daring self-experiment.

But before Tom is released from death row, the story takes another unexpected turn.

As a result of a slip of the tongue from Tom, he suddenly calls the murdered Emma, ​​instead of Patty Gray, as recorded in the police files, Susan becomes suspicious. Cornered, Tom finally confesses to her that Emma Blucher, as the murder victim was actually called, was his wife who was separated from him. She'd agreed to a divorce in Mexico, but then withdrew to blackmail Tom. Without a first divorce, Tom could not marry Susan. In an argument with Emma, ​​Tom, who had no way out, strangled Emma / Patty.

Susan is shocked by the confession. She's the only one who knows the truth now. After hard struggles with herself, she decides to call the governor and ask him to postpone signing the pardon until she has told him the whole story.

Tom remains on death row.


"Despite good actors and impressive camera work, the interesting plot in Fritz Lang's undercooled direction turned into a bloodless mind game."


In 2009 a remake by director Peter Hyams was released with the title " Against Each Doubt " ( Beyond a Reasonable Doubt ). Performers included Michael Douglas , Amber Tamblyn and Jesse Metcalfe . However, the film received consistently poor reviews.

Web links

Commons : Beyond All Doubt  - Collection of Images, Videos and Audio Files

Individual evidence

  1. Beyond all doubt. In: Lexicon of International Films . Film service , accessed March 2, 2017 .Template: LdiF / Maintenance / Access used