...engaging and discerning culture, as a way of life...

September 25, 2006

Rear Window - 7

This is what film should be. A good story, a little mystery, relationships, social commentary, witty dialogue, some suspense, and good acting. This film has all of that. Jimmy Stewart plays the lead - LB Jefferies (Jeff), a photo-journalist, who has a broken leg and is confined to his apartment. Grace Kelly plays his love interest, there current conflict is lifestyle due to different jobs- she is in the fashion industry. (On a localism side note: both Stewart and Kelly are from Pennsylvania). Jeff takes to voyeurism through his back window which opens to the back side of another apartment building. Everything seems socially normal, neighbors having spats, keeping to themselves, or dancing in their underwear with the blinds up (This is Alfred Hitchcock pushing the limits of what could be shown in films). Eventually Jeff spots something unusual, a nagging wife has disappeared, and her husband has made many suspicious trips out in the middle of the night. It all adds up to murder? Or does it? You'll just have to see it. All around a great film- deserving of its status (#42).


John said...


Anonymous said...

It is embarassing to admit that I haven't seen Rear Window since I was a child, and I remember none of it. I'll work on remedying that situation, though you might give Powell's "Peeping Tom" a look and see how the ideas of voyeurism are threatened and further played out.

Paul, a little disappointed that you still believe in the AFI's ranking

~greg said...

The AFI is not perfect but it is what we have. It doesn't seem to be wrong a lot, in my opinion, although it does favor older films- which leads to a sort of unwarranted nostalgia. I would actually switch this film with North by Northwest in the list...ok and a lot of other things, when I'm 70 I'll make a 100 best list. How does that sound?

Anonymous said...

You're on the money when you mention the reverence that the AFI reserves for for the classics, as well as the "unwarranted nostalgia," as you elequently wrote. Rather, you already understood that the composite ranking that the AFI gives to this film differs from your own.

But you shouldn't be waiting until you're older to generate a rough composite of a top 100. You already understand your tastes, have seen a tremendous amount (as this blog atests to), and can tell the virtues of the classics apart from those that are more remembered for their star power than for any contribution to cinema, so beginning to craft something like a top 100 wouldn't be overly presumptous at this point.

For Hitchcock I find that I'm liking The 39 Steps the more I think about it, and of course Notorious is magnificent.