“The Man Who Cheated Himself” is a 1951 film noir directed by Felix E. Feist. The movie stars Lee J. Cobb as Lt. Ed Cullen, a police detective in San Francisco who falls in love with a wealthy socialite named Lois Frazer (Jane Wyatt) while investigating her husband’s murder.
Lois confesses to Ed that she killed her husband in self-defense after he tried to attack her, but Ed decides to cover up the crime and make it look like a robbery gone wrong. He believes that Lois is innocent and wants to protect her from the scandal that would follow if the truth came out.
However, Ed’s younger brother Andy (John Dall), who is also a police detective, becomes suspicious of Ed’s behavior and starts to investigate the case himself. Andy uncovers evidence that implicates Lois in the murder and confronts Ed about it. Ed eventually confesses to his involvement in the cover-up, but it’s too late to save Lois. She’s already fled the city and committed suicide in despair over her husband’s death and the guilt of her actions.
The film ends with Ed and Andy reconciling and Ed accepting the consequences of his actions, which include losing his job and facing criminal charges.
Felix E. Feist
Seton I. MillerPhilip MacDonald
Lee J. Cobb, Jane Wyatt, John Dall