Wednesday, July 23, 2008

A Suspense-Filled Evening

If one movie can make the case for the fact that they don’t make suspense movies like they used to, with some exceptions, its Alfred Hitchcock’s “Rear Window” which I enjoyed watching for the first time last night. This suspense classic really wowed me, and I’m so glad I went for the oldie but goodie at the rental store this time around. The movie stars an all-star cast, including James Stewart, Grace Kelly, and Raymond Burr.

In the movie L.B. “Jeff” Jefferies (Stewart) is a photographer cooped up in his apartment and confined to a wheelchair due to a broken leg. He enjoys the daily visit of his nurse Stella and his socialite fiancée, Lisa Fremont (Kelly), but to alleviate his boredom he enjoys watching through his rear window at the daily goings on of the neighbor’s that live in the apartment buildings that surround the courtyard, even giving them monikers, including Ms. Lonely Hearts, a sad woman that sets out a place setting for her imaginary lover and then play acts welcoming him at the door and their ensuing conversation, Ms. Torso, a ballerina who rehearses in her underclothes and that holds court with her many male admirers as if a Queen Bee with her drones, and the salesman, Thorwald (Burr) with the nagging invalid wife.

While people watching helped pass the time, Jeff’s curiosity is truly piqued when during a 2:00 am rainstorm he spies Thorwald, the salesman, making numerous trips to and from his apartment with his large metal sample case. The morning after, the invalid wife is glaringly and mysteriously absent from the apartment. Thorwald’s next steps only increase Jeff’s suspicions that the wife has been the victim of foul play. Despite his fiancé’s disbelief or that of his detective friend, whom he contacts to confirm his suspicions, he’s determined to do what it takes to catch who he believes is the killer.

Great movie!! It was definitely one of Hitchcock’s best.