Christian Science Monitor (2000) - Hitchcock's genius on view in 'Window'
- newspaper article: Hitchcock's genius on view in 'Window'
- author(s): David Sterritt
- journal: Christian Science Monitor (21/Jan/2000)
- issue: page 15
- journal ISSN: 0882-7729
- publisher: The Christian Science Monitor
- keywords: Alfred Hitchcock, Cornell Woolrich, Grace Kelly, James C. Katz, James Stewart, John Michael Hayes, Motion picture directors & producers, Rear Window (1954), Robert A. Harris, Rope (1948), Universal Studios, Vertigo (1958)
Movie buffs can disagree about almost anything, and even the great Alfred Hitchcock has critics who consider his style too precise, his characters too passive, his images too artificial.
Hitchcockians far outnumber Hitchknockians, though, and his reputation seems to grow more lofty with every passing year. This trend isn't likely to change as we head into 2000, especially since the new century is beginning with a burst of renewed interest in one of the director's greatest works: "Rear Window," first released in 1954 and now returning to theaters in a freshly restored edition so resplendent that you'd think the movie rolled out of the studio just yesterday.
If anyone's memory needs jogging, "Rear Window" stars James Stewart as an injured photographer who spends his days dozing in his wheelchair, fending off a gorgeous girlfriend (Grace Kelly) whose refined habits don't suit his adventurous tastes, and snooping on neighbors across the courtyard from his Greenwich Village apartment. When a salesman's nagging wife disappears from her customary place, our hero decides foul play must be afoot ‑ but he has trouble convincing a skeptical detective, who thinks the trouble is all in the overstimulated imagination of his voyeuristic friend.
This is an ingenious plot, adapted by John Michael Hayes from a Cornell Woolrich story. But what makes "Rear Window" a masterful movie is the way Hitchcock uses its suspenseful narrative to examine areas of human experien...