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Alfred Hitchcock's Rear Window

Updated on October 21, 2017
PAINTDRIPS profile image

As a Baby-Boomer, Denise and millions of others are becoming senior citizens. She explores what it means to be over 60 today.

Photo from Rear Window.
Photo from Rear Window.

1950's Classics

This movie with Jimmy Stewart and Grace Kelly is one of my all-time favorite suspense-thrillers. It has it all, suspense, mystery, romance, intrigue, Grace Kelly, art, health issues, and Grace Kelly. Oh did I say that twice? The premise is so simple it is genius. A photographer breaks his leg and has to stay homebound. Bored, he spends his time looking into the windows of the apartment building across the way and inadvertently sees what he is sure is a murder. What a great story line. I have seen remakes of this movie and reuse of the plot in other TV series dramas but this original, of course, is the best. Similar versions were done on The Simpsons, That ‘70’s Show, The Flintstones, Mathnet, White Collar, Raising Hope, and Saturday Night Live. However my favorite spoof on Rear Window theme was done on Castle, season 5, episode 19 called “The Lives of Others.” I knew what was going to happen next, having loved Rear Window so long, but I was still sucked into the story and Castle (Nathan Fillion) played the Jimmy Stewart part perfectly. Just for fun I think I'll go watch that episode again!


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Be afraid...

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Fears and Phobias

I read where Alfred Hitchcock used themes from psychoanalysis in his movies. Whether or not that is true, he did have some insights into the things that make people afraid or that create suspense. Things such as fear of heights (Rear Window), fear of falling (Vertigo), fear of failure (Strangers on a Train), fear of police (The Wrong Man), fear of birds (The Birds), fear of situations where escape is difficult or would that be fear of being cornered (Rear Window). I don’t know what kind of relationship Hitchcock had with his mother, but many of his movies involved characters, which had problems with or enormous attachment to their mothers. This always seems to add to the strange psychological make up of the characters of intrigue, not always the villain but sometimes. Just analyzing the mind games and phobias in a Hitchcock movie could take a lifetime. But that’s what makes them so great; so timeless and so classic.

This is such a classic movie and Grace Kelly looks so great in that evening dress, you simply must buy this DVD to have in your own library. Even when you know what is going to happen next, you will find yourself on the edge of your seat every time.

Mall Watchers

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People Watchers

This movie goes right to the heart of what people are all about. We are generally busybodies, aren’t we? I know you were probably taught like me, not to stare at people, not to eavesdrop because it’s rude, not to judge people without knowing them, but that doesn’t stop us, does it? We do tent to be “people watchers” for the most part. I went the mall recently with a friend and as we walked up and down the halls my friend was more interested in the people than the store windows. She told me she often goes to the mall to people watch. To see what people are wearing, how they treat their children when they don’t think anyone is watching, how they treat each other, how they eat/nibble while walking, or even try to steal right there in front of everyone. She isn’t alone. We all do it to one degree or another. I remember when I was much younger that I couldn’t sit in the back of the church. I just couldn’t concentrate on what the preacher was trying to say because from the back there were so many people to watch and notice instead of hearing the message. I always make myself sit in the front if I want to get anything at all out of the message presented.

So here we have Jimmy Stewart with nothing else better to do but watch the people in the apartments across the court from him. It was better than a movie for him because it went on 24-7. As a photographer he had a high power zoom lens and a pair of binoculars with which to see it all almost anonymously. That is until the murder caught him watching… then there was trouble.

People at the Mall

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Vertigo Trailer

50's Diner

My oil painting of a Fonzie type character in front of a 50s diner.
My oil painting of a Fonzie type character in front of a 50s diner. | Source

Neighbors Speech

What do you think of the "neighbors" speech in Rear Window? Do you think neighbors are supposed to look out for each other?

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I love the 50's

I love the 50’s era, the diners, the duck-tails, the poodle skirts, the music, the cars. It is all a wonderful time when things and life was simple and, well, cleaner. Plus it has the added charm of being the decade I was born. Just saying. I fell in love with Richie on Happy Days and who didn't want to be a Cunningham? I know all the lyrics to the Laverne and Shirley theme as well as the lyrics to Grease. I was right there with Marty McFly in Back to the Future. I actually love black and white movies for the artistry of it. My father was very resistant to getting a color TV (because of the cost I think) until all the programs were being aired in color and he finally couldn't take the suspense any longer. He just had to see what Miss Kitty from Gunsmoke looked like in color. He wasn't disappointed!

I have the added pleasure of being married to a wonderful man who actually worked on the Laverne and Shirley and Happy Days set (behind the scenes) and who owns a pair of boots once belonging to the Fonz. When the Fonz blew on his fist and rapped the jukebox, someone had to be backstage making the music come on. Someone had to do the magic. How many people can say they have Fonzie's boots in their closet?

I have old episodes of Life with Elizabeth with Betty White on CD (what a tiny waist that woman had) and Ivy Halls with Ronald Coleman (what a voice that man had) on CD. The old episodes of "What's My Line?" and "Queen for a Day" give me thrills. And who could forget the "$64,000 Question" as well as the "You Bet Your Life" Chrysler-Plymouth show with Groucho Marx (what a funny man)? So it makes perfect sense I would love Alfred Hitchcock movies too.

Movie Trailer

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    • PAINTDRIPS profile image
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      Denise McGill 3 years ago from Fresno CA

      I absolutely agree. Amazing that you would compare it to a Norman Rockwell study... I thought that too. A snapshot of Americana in all it's many forms and styles. Thanks for commenting and visiting.

    • cat on a soapbox profile image

      Catherine Tally 3 years ago from Los Angeles

      Hello Denise. I was thrilled to see your hub because Rear Window tops my list of favorites. I agree that Grace Kelly looks knock-out gorgeous. ( I would describe her as looking luminous) and she has depth too! The thing that sticks w/ me most is a visual quality akin to Norman Rockwell 's studies with all of the vignettes in each apartment window. It all seems so normal until we begin to see the dysfunction beneath the veneer. Simply brilliant, and one of Hitchcock's best!

    • PAINTDRIPS profile image
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      Denise McGill 3 years ago from Fresno CA

      Classic movies are the best!

    • PAINTDRIPS profile image
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      Denise McGill 4 years ago from Fresno CA

      @Tim Bader: Thank you for visiting!

    • PAINTDRIPS profile image
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      Denise McGill 4 years ago from Fresno CA

      @Merrci: Thank you for visiting!

    • Merrci profile image

      Merry Citarella 4 years ago from Oregon's Southern Coast

      It's such a classic! And Jimmy Stewart is always good. Oh, and Grace Kelly too. ;-) Time to watch it again. Fun lens-thanks for sharing it.

    • Tim Bader profile image

      Tim Bader 4 years ago from Surrey, UK

      I haven't seen this movie for a long time, but I agree that it is definitely the best version.

    • PAINTDRIPS profile image
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      Denise McGill 4 years ago from Fresno CA

      @susan369: Time to see it again! I had to watch the Castle episode again because Kate Beckett comes to Castle's apartment in one of those Grace Kelly evening dresses.. stunning. Thanks for visiting my lens.

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      susan369 4 years ago

      I love Jimmy Stewart! It's been a while since I last saw this film, but I remember it being really good.

    • PAINTDRIPS profile image
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      Denise McGill 4 years ago from Fresno CA

      @tonyleather: Yes indeed. Thanks for liking my lens.

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      tonyleather 4 years ago

      A truly iconic movie! Great lens!

    • PAINTDRIPS profile image
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      Denise McGill 4 years ago from Fresno CA

      @BritFlorida: Thanks so much for liking my lens. That means a lot coming from you. You are like a rock star. I saw how many lenses you have created... wow.

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      Jackie Jackson 4 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      One of my favourite films of all time ... thank you for a wonderful review.

    • PAINTDRIPS profile image
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      Denise McGill 4 years ago from Fresno CA

      @Mercy Girl No9: I knew there were more. Thanks for reminder. It was a fabulous theme and there are probably tons more. Hitchcock was great to borrow from just like Shakespeare. :)

    • Mercy Girl No9 profile image

      Mercy Girl No9 4 years ago

      It was a great movie. Brian De Palma also borrowed from it in his movie "Body Double." De Palma borrowed quite a bit from Hitchcock.

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