Rope ★★★★★

Original Title: Rope
Year of Release: 1948
Genres: Thriller; Crime; Drama
Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Writers: Hume Cronyn, Ben Hecht, Arthur Laurents; Patrick Hamilton (based on the play)
Main Cast: James Stewart, John Dall, Farley Granger, Constance Collier, Douglas Dick, Edith Evanson, Joan Chandler, Cedric Hardwicke

While most remembered for its (almost but not really) one long take, it's quite impressive how subdued and not show-offy Rope. Hitchcock is a clever enough filmmaker to know just what does and doesn't work, and in this case he uses the (almost entire) absence of editing to give a growing sense of tension from the camerawork, dialogue, and acting alone. Everything is quite stellar here, including some really funny moments and darkly comic ones, and Hitchcock's love for "ticking bombs" is in full effect as a dead body is literally hidden in plain sight right from the beginning and you are just aching for it to be discovered by someone.

The greatest aspect of this film is how, after a lot of philosophizing about the concept of murder and who deserves to kill and who to die, it reaches a conclusion that is truly timeless: no one is superior or inferior to another, no one more or less worthy to continue living. We see during the film how close other people were to David, how he was almost going to get married to someone who loved it, how his life was not as worthless as his so-called "friends" thought it was. And the closing credits, all in relation to David (David's Friends, David's Father, etc.) are one final emotional gut-punch. Truly great stuff from the master of suspense, who has yet to disappoint me and probably never will.

Story: 9
Directing: 10
Cinematography: 10
Acting: 9.5
Sound: 9
Visual Effects: 8.5


Violence & Gore: 4
Sex & Nudity: 1
Drugs & Profanity: 1
Intensity & Horror: 6

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