Compulsion Overview:

Compulsion (1959) was a Crime - Drama Film directed by Richard Fleischer and produced by Richard D. Zanuck.


A tough dramatization of the famous Leopold and Loeb murder case in which two college students kidnapped and killed a boy purely for kicks. Welles plays the defense attorney who knows the truth and hopes only to forestall the death sentence. An adaptation of reporter Meyer Levin's novel.

(Source: available at Amazon AMC Classic Movie Companion).


BlogHub Articles:

The Leopold and Loeb case is the basis for “Compulsion”

By Stephen Reginald on Mar 5, 2021 From Classic Movie Man

The Leopold and Loeb case is the basis for “Compulsion” Compulsion (1959) is an American crime drama directed by Richard Fleischer and starring Orson Welles, Diane Varsi, Dean Stockwell, and Brandford Dillman. The film is based on a novel written by Meyer Levin, which was a fiction... Read full article

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Quotes from

Max Steiner: It just irritates me to see anyone as brilliant as you make a jackass out of himself over someone like Artie Straus.

[first lines]
Judd Steiner: To the perfect crime!
Arthur Straus: Crime. Oh, my wealthy fraternity brothers. 67 dollars, and a second-hand typewriter.

[last lines]
Jonathan Wilk: In those years to come, you might find yourself asking if it wasn't the hand of god dropped these glasses... And if he didn't, who did?

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Facts about

Average Shot Length & Median Shot Length = ~11 seconds.
This is the second of three Hollywood adaptations of the Leopold-Loeb murder. The first was Alfred Hitchcock's Rope, the third Tom Kalin's Swoon.
Made in 1959, some 35 years after the real murder.
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Also directed by Richard Fleischer

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Also produced by Richard D. Zanuck

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Also released in 1959

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