After criminology professor Richard Wanley sends his wife and two children off on vacation, he goes to his club to meet friends. Next door, Wanley sees a striking oil portrait of Alice Reed (Joan Bennett) in a storefront window. He and his friends talk about the beautiful painting and its subject. Wanley stays at the club and reads Song of Songs. When he leaves, Wanley stops at the portrait and meets Reed, who is standing near the painting watching people watch it. Reed convinces Wanley to join her for drinks.Complications of an unpleasant nature ensue, of course.
Senses of Cinema has an article. DVD Talk says it's "Considered a top noir and one of Fritz Lang's very best American films" and is "considered Lang's most pure investigation of the nature of guilt and conscience." Rotten Tomatoes has a critics score of 100%.