Trying to highlight the faults of the death penalty, a reporter, with the aid of a publisher, collate a portfolio of evidence to show how he could be seen to be guilty of murder while innocent. Once the reporter dies though, there is no-one to confirm his story and it's not long before the police begin to ask questions.
Hard-boiled reporter Andrews and publisher Blackmer, campaigning against the death penalty, decide to expose the shortcomings of the justice system by manipulating circumstantial evidence to make Andrews seem guilty of the recent slaying of a good-time girl. But when Blackmer is killed accidentally, Andrews is trapped by all the evidence he has stacked against himself.
Using plot twists rather than shadows to create its' nightmarishness, this is an aptly dreamlike and scary thriller courtesy of Austrian great Lang. Went on to clearly influence such films as The Life of David Gale.
Another film to add to Lang's long list of success, what this tense thriller lacks in action is more than made for by unpredictable twists in the plot, as well as an eerie atmosphere created by the gothic looking buildings and black and white film.