Rear Window Is A Timeless Success



Hitchcock is regarded in the film industry as the father of suspense.

From “Vertigo” to “The Birds,” he was the first in his craft to truly make us hang on the edge of our seats, constantly asking “What happens next?” His masterpiece “Rear Window” is no exception. The story of a wheel-chair confined photographer by the name of L.B. Jefffries (portrayed by James Stewart) and his stunningly beautiful model girlfriend Lisa Fremont (played by the gorgeous Grace Kelly), as well as his home-care nurse Stella (Thelma Ritter). Throughout the movie, plagued by an unforgiving feeling of lethargy, L.B. finds himself spying on his neighbors with a pair of binoculars.

Apart from its obvious qualities that make it a thriller, the film also posseses subtle and sumptous portions of romantic insight, comedy and psyhological insight as well. Rightfully so, it’s been ranked twice within the Top 50 of the American Film Institutes “100 Greatest Films”, and here’s why:

The One Liners

Truth be told, some of the lines from this movie are so beautifully written and they strike at you with such precision that they remain engraved into your brain for days. One such line is when Grace Kelly finds herself and Jeff doubting their suspicions about Thorwald when she says “You and me with long faces plunged into dispair because we find out a man didn’t kill his wife. We’re two fo the most frightening ghouls I’ve ever known.”

Stella gets an amazing line in as well, that goes something like: “When I married Miles, we were both a couple of maladjusted misfits. We are still maladjusted misfits, and we have loved every minute of it.”

Dialogue is arguably one of the most important aspects of a good movie. This film does it flawlessly. It makes the characters feel alive and almost touchable.

It Is Genuinely Scary

Although being scary is not a focal point of the movie, it still has some real scary moments. The best one in our opinion would have to be when Jeff picks up the phone in his apartment, thinking that he’s speaking to his friend Lieutenant Doyle when in fact he’s on the line with the murderer – who now has access to some very important information.

The suspense really picks up here and opens up a variety of scenarios, nearly all of them perilous for Jeff. It’s stuff like this that differentiates a good movie from a great one, a single moment that causes your heart to cease beating for a fraction of a second.


The Claustrophobia Effect

The majority of the movie happens inside of a single apartment, albeit a large one (the largest ever constructed effort for Paramount at that time, in fact). Nevertheless, the movie still gives off an eerie sense of claustrophobia, as we (the viewers) are hopelessly stuck inside Jeff’s flat and only get to peer into Jeff’s neighbors’ homes. It’s what makes the movie feel less like Hollywood and more like real life, and helps the viewers empathize with the protagonist, truly getting a glimpse into what’s going on inside his head, rather than outside.

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