This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.
DopeAssGhost’s review published on Letterboxd:
This review may contain spoilers.
"Two men attempt to prove they committed the perfect crime by hosting a dinner party after strangling their former classmate to death."
Critics were not too kind to this film upon release and in the years following, many divisive reviews have blossomed in regards to the film. But if I'm being frank, Rope is understandably a divisive film. It houses homosexual subtext, has a unique stylistic camera effect experimented purposefully by director Alfred Hitchcock, and its morality message on good and evil/intellect vs. inferiority was ahead of its time. But all of these things I just mentioned aren't damaging to the film for me; in fact, they really help drive the film forward.
I find Rope to be a minor masterpiece in Alfred Hitchcock's vast cinematic catalogue. The plot, themes, and dialogue are all handled intelligently and respectfully. The one-set setting keeps things contained especially since the film employs camera tricks to make it appear as if the film is all shot in one take (in actuality, it's a series of long-take sequences shot in real time juxtaposed in the editing room to mirror a one-cut camera take). I find it brilliant and personally exquisite for the moral story at hand here. The actors are all fantastic; John Dall is perfect as the monstrous Brandon Shaw, an unempathetic manipulative sociopath who pushed his obvious lover, Phillip Morgan (portrayed by Farley Granger) into being his accomplice in murder by strangling David Kentley (portrayed by Dick Hogan). The murder is just an experiment for the men to prove their arrogant superiority in getting away with it because they find themselves intellectually superior to society. Farley Granger is great as a man coming undone at the seams by guilt and fear. James Stewart portrays the boys former professor Rupert Cadell, who draws suspicions on the boys and deduces what transpired the whole movie. His horrified reaction at the end when he discovers the body the boys have been hiding really hits home as is his end speech.
The titular piece of rope that was used to strangle and kill David Kentley feels like its own character. It's such a lovely Mcguffin that literally haunts every time it's presented on screen.
Rope is a marvelous film in my book and one I feel should receive more recognition.