The Unholy Wife
|The Unholy Wife|
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||John Farrow|
|Produced by||John Farrow|
|Written by||William Durkee
|Editing by||Eda Warren|
|Distributed by||RKO Radio Pictures
|Release date(s)||June 24, 1957|
|Running time||94 minutes|
The Unholy Wife (1957) is a color film noir drama film produced and directed by John Farrow at RKO Radio Pictures and released by Universal Pictures as RKO was in its final stages of closing down. The screenplay was written by William Durkee and Jonathan Latimer.
Not long after the marriage, Phyllis begins having an affair with a local rodeo rider, San Sanford (Tom Tryon), seeing him every time her husband is away, which is frequently. One night, Phyllis' elderly mother-in-law (Beulah Bondi) thinks a burglar is breaking into the house, so she calls the police.
Phyllis sees this as an opportunity to kill her husband and blame the burglar for the crime. The plan backfires a day later when Phyllis instead kills her husband's best friend. Not wanting to go to jail, she convinces her husband to confess to the killing and they concoct a story that would set him free after the trial.
Unfortunately for her husband, Phyllis lies at the trial and he is put away for murder. The "unholy" wife finally gets the punishment she deserves when her mother-in-law dies of poisoning and the blame goes to Phyllis, who is sent to prison—for a crime she had nothing to do with. Later, she faces her execution in the gas chamber. The film ends with Paul showing their son Michael (Gary Hunley) the vineyard that will someday be his.
- Diana Dors as Phyllis Hochen
- Rod Steiger as Paul Hochen
- Tom Tryon as San Sanders
- Beulah Bondi as Emma Hochen
- Marie Windsor as Gwen
- Arthur Franz as Father Stephen Hochen
- Luis Van Rooten as Ezra Benton
- Joe De Santis as Gino Verdugo
- Argentina Brunetti as Theresa
- Steve Pendleton as Deputy Bob Watkins
- Douglas Spencer as Judge
- Gary Hunley as Michael
- James Burke as Sheriff Tom Watling
- Tol Avery as Dist. Atty. Carl Kramer
 Critical reception
The film has received mixed reviews. Dennis Schwartz at the "Ozus' World Movie Reviews" web site called the film, "A ponderous melodrama that even becomes more awkward by the film's end."
 See also
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to: The Unholy Wife|
- The Unholy Wife at the Internet Movie Database
- The Unholy Wife at the TCM Movie Database
- The Unholy Wife film trailer at Back Alley Noir