The House Across the Lake

The House Across the Lake

Heat Wave aka The House Across the Lake movie poster
Directed by Ken Hughes
Produced by Anthony Hinds
Written by Ken Hughes
Starring Alex Nicol
Hillary Brooke
Music by Ivor Slaney
Cinematography Walter J. Harvey
Edited by James Needs
Distributed by Lippert Pictures (USA)
Exclusive Films (UK)
Release dates
Running time
68 min.
Country U.K.
Language English

The House Across the Lake is a 1954 British crime drama film released in the United States as Heat Wave. The film noir drama, filmed and set in England, stars Alex Nicol and Hillary Brooke, who are the only Americans in the cast. Brooke actually plays a British character, as she did in most films. (Her mastery of a "posh" accent caused her to be typecast as British in Hollywood films starting in the 1940s.)


An American pulp novelist, Mark Kendrick (Nicol), meets his rich neighbors across the lake and is soon seduced by beautiful blonde Carol (Brooke), the wife of the older Forrest (James). Forrest is badly injured when his boat has an accident in the fog, and Carol throws him overboard.

After first refusing to go along with her attempt to call it an accident, Kendrick agrees when they plan to meet in a month's time and live off her dead husband's money. But when the coroner calls the death an accident, she secretly marries another old flame three weeks later and changes residences. When Kendrick finds out about the betrayal he angrily confronts her and she sneers at him that she only used him and that there's nothing he could do about it. Mark confesses, knowing that doing so would only mean a prison sentence for him.


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