The 1954 film Rear Window discusses those within society who feel isolated. In showing those who are isolated by society 's expectations, and contrasting the way in which individuals put up a façade in public, Hitchcock demonstrates the impact of isolation. However, Hitchcock also illustrates through the progression of the film how people can
Rear Window Argues that people should mind their own business. Do you agree? Rear Window, a 1954 romance/murder-mystery by the renowned golden age director Alfred Hitchcock, is a film that explores a multitude of themes and genres through the voyeuristic gaze of protagonist L.B. Jefferies. Jefferies, or ‘Jeff’ as he commonly known throughout the film, is a middle-aged bachelor recently hospitalised due to his high-risk career as a photojournalist.
In the short story “It Had to Be Murder,” the many entities, atmosphere, and sentence structure present contribute to the overall purpose of the setting - to evict a sense of significance over the most miniscule of things. “I could get from the bed to the window and the window to the bed and that was all,” a sentence near the beginning of the story serves to depict that the life of the protagonist is very monotonous and repetitive and Jeff experiences are confined only to his bedroom. However, throughout the story, Jeffery is depicted as doing everything but that; from being the witness of a murder and assisting the police on the crime which he is the only one to have witnessed. It is as almost if his bedroom represented the humans being isolated
Once Alfred Hitchcock defined his film Rear Window (Hitchcock, 1954), as the story of a man who cannot move and looks through a window, what he sees and how he reacts to it (Truffaut, 1986). For this reason, Hitchcock constructs the character of the protagonist of the film, Jeff (James Steward), not only by using cinematographic devices but also through Jeff´s interpretation of what he sees related his own life, showing a dichotomy between what he looks at and what he lives. At the beginning of the film, a camera movement reveals Jeff´s profession and why he is immobilized in a wheel-chair. He is a photographer, interested in looking at other´s lives; consequently, he could be described as a voyeur. Across a very limited space- the courtyard of the neighbourhood, he spends his time looking through the window in order to avoid boredom.
The image of the central all-seeing tower which is clothed in darkness and occupied by guards is inverted in Rear Window, as Jeff’s apartment is the one with the lights off, whilst he observes the lit apartments opposite via his camera lens. It is the use of light, or lack of, which keeps Jeff hidden whilst he carries out his investigation, but also eventually becomes his exposure in the finale. Whilst Lisa is about to be taken away by the police for trespassing Thorwald’s apartment, she gestures to Mrs Thorwald’s ring which she is wearing to Jeff across the courtyard. Thorwald sees this action and in a single climactic scene, the audience feels all of their scopic power stripped from them as Thorwald returns their gaze and they become the subject of the look for once. This is a direct reference to an earlier quote in the film by Stella, who tells Jeff, ‘what people ought to do is get outside their own house and look in for a change,’ which is precisely what Thorwald does.
Here Hitchcock uses point of view shots for the protagonists Jeff, Lisa and Stella, while they look into the windows of Jeff’s neighbors, primarily that of Raymond Burr’s character Lars Thorwald. There is also a reverse shot which is also a P.O.V. from Lars’s perspective. One of the most iconic shots in this film is in fact a point of view shot wherein Jeff blasts light through the flash of his camera, which is intended to blind and impede Lars. This is in the point of view of Jeff and what it does is blind the audience for the few seconds that the flash goes off and contributes towards building both fear and tension as Lars gets closer and closer to
Jeffrey broke his leg, therefore the only thing he can do is watching though the rear window. Telling a story with great suspension is hard, especially from a fixed point of view. However, Hitchcock enhanced such a great story with his skill of stage setting. In the movie, Jeffrey looks though windows, gets the information and pushes the story line forward.
Most of the gazing Jeffries does is attributed onto females. Nearly every window represents the type of relationships Jeffrey could have down the track, he's viewing marriage in its various stages, also what could be Jeffries life in the future with Lisa who wants to marry him. There is Miss lonleyhearts who is alone and depressed, the newly weds who pull down the blinds and are completely in love with each other, the bickering couple straight across from Jeffries window; mr and Mrs Thorwald. As jeff looks through his rear window into his neighbours apartments, he
These scenes display what the boys want the girls to be: sexy, young, and playful; the exact opposite of the qualities their mother instills in them. Mrs. Lisbon forced the girls to live a strict, cold, and secluded life in attempt to save their purity. Coppola uses contradicting costuming, settings, background music, and exposure to convey the sharp contradiction between the scenes of the boy’s imaginations and the actuality of the sister’s lives under the provision of their mother. Sensual costuming, large exposure, and upbeat music dictate the boy’s fantasies. Conservative costuming, religious motifs, less exposure, and cold music persist in scenes from inside their home.
While discussing Stewart’s performance in 1954 Rear Window, Naremore discounts/disregards “Hitchcock’s simplistic account of the Kuleshov effect or his glib descriptions of how the ‘best’ acting in movies is achieved” (240) This comment is applicable to Rope also: “As much a tour de force for the star as for the director,” each film “heighten[s] the cleverness of Stewart’s performance by severely constraining him” (241). Stewart’s “crisis of masculinity” is made visible most prominently through the spectacle of his suffering. Film after film wanted him to “exhibit unusual degrees of neurotic suffering, moral anguish, and