Release Date: August 23, 1948
Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: James Stewart, John Dall, Farley Granger
Runtime: 80 min
Tagline: Nothing ever held you like Alfred Hitchcock’s Rope.
It’s a pretty sweet film.
Brandon (John Dall) and Phillip (Farley Granger) are two young men who have always wondered what it would be like to kill someone. After they strangle an inferior classmate, David (Dick Hogan), they invite over his family and friends as a means to test their perfect crime, and also an old brilliant schoolteacher played admirably and stunningly by James Stewart; all while the body is in a chest in the middle of the apartment.
It’s an interesting and entertaining fight of wits, between Brandon and Rupert, as Brandon drops subtle hints of the murder to see if Rupert would pick up on them. And then Phillip’s just a nervous mess with high anxiety over in the corner.
Most of it is extremely entertaining, and a lot of it is really suspenseful. It really kept me guessing, and a lot of it is pretty intense. It’s an 80 minute experience that feels longer than it is, and Hitchcock shot the film in a really interesting fashion. He only used about ten takes throughout the whole film (if the trivia proves accurate), ranging from four to ten minutes. This fashion makes you feel like you’re watching a play because of the one set, and the editing and how it looks like the film’s just all ongoing.
The performances are pretty good from the majority of the cast, their performances feel genuine and not like they’re in it for the money, John Dall and Farley Granger did a good job, and James Stewart stands out the most, though, with a really great performance.
The film could have been better paced, it isn’t perfect but it’s enjoyable. I caught it on TV, and it was an interesting experience, but if I saw it at a store I’m not sure if I’d buy the film, as I’m not sure if I’d be apt to experience this flick again anytime soon.
The film also stars Edith Evanson, Douglas Dick, Cedric Hardwicke, Joan Chandler, and Constance Collier (who I wish could have gotten strangled, she was so irritating, in the case that I am thinking of the correct annoying character).
Hitchcock really does deliver us an entertaining experience, with the way that he films the thing making it, and the performance given by Stewart, the most memorable aspects of the film.