The Third Alibi

The Third Alibi is a 1961 British thriller film directed by Montgomery Tully and starring Laurence Payne, Patricia Dainton, Jane Griffiths and Edward Underdown.[1][2]

The Third Alibi
Directed byMontgomery Tully
Produced byMaurice J. Wilson
Screenplay byMaurice J. Wilson
Montgomery Tully
Based onplay A Moment of Blindness by Pip Baker
Jane Baker
StarringLaurence Payne
Patricia Dainton
Jane Griffiths
Music byDon Banks
CinematographyWalter J. Harvey (as James Harvey)
Edited byJim Connock
Eternal Films Limited
Distributed byGrand National Pictures (UK)
Release date
  • September 1961 (1961-09) (UK)
Running time
68 minutes
CountryUnited Kingdom


Musicals composer Norman Martell's (Laurence Payne) is having an affair with his wife Helen's (Patricia Dainton) divorced stepsister, Peggy (Jane Griffiths). Peggy repeatedly asks him to obtain a divorce and marry her; he finally agrees when she becomes pregnant. His wife refuses his request out of sibling rivalry and suggests that the child's father may be someone else. Martell cannot just leave his wife, as she manages his royalty income. Instead, he plots her murder, using the tape recorder he uses in his composing to establish an alibi.


Critical reception

TV Guide gave the film two out of four stars, calling it a "tight little thriller";[3] and BFI Screenonline wrote, "The Third Alibi benefits distinctly from the assured economy of his (Tully's) direction. Compact, low-key, but exciting...this later work is, characteristically, constructed with precision; and moves smoothly and swiftly towards an effective and ingenious denouement."[4]


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