THE TROUBLE WITH HARRY (1955): “He looked exactly the same when he was alive, only he was vertical.”

THE TROUBLE WITH HARRY (1955) – Paramount Pictures – ★★★1/2

Color – 99 minutes – 1.85:1 aspect ratio

Directed by Alfred Hitchcock

Principal cast:  John Forsythe (Sam Marlowe), Shirley MacLaine (Jennifer Rogers), Edmund Gwenn (Captain Albert Wiles), Mildred Natwick (Miss Ivy Gravely), Mildred Dunnock (Mrs. Wiggs), Jerry Mathers (Arnie Rogers), Royal Dano (Deputy Sheriff Calvin Wiggs).

Screenplay by John Michael Hayes based on the novel by Jack Trevor Story

Cinematography by Robert Burks

Edited by Alma Macrorie

Music by Bernard Herrmann

When Alfred Hitchcock first proposed The Trouble With Harry to Paramount studio execs in 1955, they were not very keen on the project.  But they were not really in a position to quibble; in his short tenure at the studio Hitchcock had delivered a monster hit in Rear Window, and his follow-up To Catch a Thief had all the makings of a hit as well.  So they indulged him in his desire to make a small budget character piece, a comedy no less.

The movie involves the inhabitants of a small New England village, and their interactions with the corpse of a man named Harry.    Captain Wiles (Edmund Gwenn) believes he accidentally shot the man, and enlists the help of  local talented painter Sam Marlowe (John Forsythe) to bury the body.   Captain Wiles later determines that he couldn’t have shot Harry, and the body is dug up.  Loca spinster Miss Gravely (Mildred Natwick) admits to hitting Harry on the head with her shoe, and Harry is buried again. We later learn that Harry was the estranged husband of single-mother Jennifer Rogers (Shirley MacLaine) who has no love lost for Harry.   Over the course of the film, the body is interred and disinterred about three times, practically right under the nose of the local dimwitted Deputy Sheriff, and finally the four friends decide what to do with Harry.   This film is in no way a murder mystery.  It is very simply a character study with  darkly comedic tones.  One could almost call it a sweet film.   Interestingly, the film takes place entirely in one 24-hour period.

Innuendo:   Screenwriter John Michael Hayes was as much a fan of sexual innuendo as Hitchcock.  There had been hints of innuendo in Hayes first screenplay for Hitch, Rear Window.  He added even more to his next screenplay, To Catch A Thief, and became even more bold still in this screenplay.  When Captain Wiles confesses to his date with Miss Gravely, Sam replies “Do you realize you will be the first man to…cross her threshold?”  The Captain replies “She’s a well-preserved woman, and preserves have to be opened someday.”  The first time Sam kisses Jennifer she tell him “Careful, Sam, I have short fuse.”  This kind of banter pops up throughout the film, right up to the very last line, the admission that Sam asked the man who purchased his paintings for a double bed!

 

Performance:   For this movie to be a success, the performances had to be just right.  First of all because of the tone of the film,  a dark comedy with a very dry and subtle sense of humor.  Secondly because it is an ensemble piece with a very small cast.  There are only  nine speaking roles in the film.   And every performance is just right.  Edmund Gwenn is charming and lovable as Captain Wiles.   The great character actress Mildred Natwick was the perfect choice to play the spinsterish Miss Gravely.  Shirley MacLaine in her film debut shows the charm that she would elicit to even greater effect in later films like The Apartment.  And John Forsythe pulls off the most challenging role in the film, by making his character a bit a cynic, who isn’t above the occasional snark in another person’s direction, but always keeping him likable.  That could be said of all the characters, really.  They have a streak of New England eccentricity, but all remain endearing.

Source material:   The original novel by Jack Trevor Story is a light and breezy read, similar in tone to the movie.  Hitchcock and screenwriter John Michael Hayes stayed very true to this.  There are a couple of character substitutions, namely a pair in the novel that are having an affair.  This pair, and their respective spouses were excised from the screenplay.  The character of Deputy Sheriff Calvin Wiggs did not exist in the novel.  With the exception of these character changes, and the setting moving from England to New England, the plot is virtually identical in the novel and film.   John Michael Hayes even used entire sections of dialogue from the book, almost verbatim.   Compare this dialogue in the novel to the same scene in the movie, when Sam and Captain Wiles are talking about the corpse:

‘Suppose for instance,’ he said, ‘it was written in the Book of Heaven that this man was to die in this particular place and at this particular time.  Suppose for a moment that in some manner the actual accomplishing of his demise had been bungled; that something had gone wrong.  Perhaps it was to be a thunderbolt and there was no thunder available, say.  Well, you come along and you shoot him and Heaven’s will is done and destiny fulfilled…’

This is almost word-for-word how the scene plays out in the movie as well, just one example of many in the book.

Hitchcock touches:  This is often referred to as a “minor” or “lesser” Hitchcock movie.  But even though Hitchcock himself thought of this film as a bit of a self-indulgence, he still took it very seriously, and was always looking for ways to challenge and push himself.  This can be said of every film he ever made.  Here are some comments Hitchcock made in a couple of interviews for  Cahiers du Cinema in 1955 and 1956:

The Trouble With Harry was to be filmed in the East of the United States, at the time when the trees were in full autumnal color.  It’s the first time, to my knowledge, that a film has been made in color specifically in the season for which the action occurs.  So I brought together actors, cameramen, a whole crew and we left for Vermont.  There we waited for the leaves to deign to transition from green to yellow and from yellow to red…It’s very interesting because during the entire film the color scheme will be that of the trees:  yellow and red.

Initially Hitchcock hoped to film the entire movie on location in Vermont.  Unfortunately the weather did not cooperate, so after filming about a third of the movie on location, the remaining work was done back on the Paramount lot in Hollywood.

Here is Hitchcock, again:

Although the action unfolds in the course of a single day, the film begins green and ends red.  It was essentially a counterpoint.

 

This green and red color scheme extended beyond the foliage;  you can see the dominant green in the above image, as Sam and Jennifer get to know each other.

Late in the movie, we can see the red color scheme extends even to the wallpaper in Jennifer’s house, as well as the decorative dried leaves on the mantel.  Hitchcock again:

The autumn colors are magnificent, and you may have noticed that I never show the corpse in a way that could be disagreeable.  Rather than show the face, I show the drawing that represents it.

Hitchcock:

To my way of thinking, the characters in The Trouble With Harry have reactions which are absolutely normal and logical.  It’s their peculiar behavior, free from affectation, from dissimulation, from worldly concerns, from conformity, that makes us believe they cannot be real.  In other words, instead of the logic of the absurd, I prefer the absurdity of logic.

Mr. Hitchcock, meet Mr. Herrmann:  While Alfred Hitchcock was completing To Catch A Thief, he asked that film’s composer, Lyn Murray,  if he could recommend someone to score his next movie.    Murray immediately suggested his friend Bernard Herrmann.  And so began one of the greatest partnerships between director and composer in the history of cinema.   Herrmann’s scores for Psycho and Vertigo are his most remembered for Hitchcock, and his most discussed.  But his first score for Hitchcock, on The Trouble With Harry, is absolutely charming, and perfectly suited to the material.   Late in his life, Hitchcock said this was his personal favorite of all the Bernard Herrmann scores for his films.

Recurring players:  Edmund Gwenn, a Hitchcock favorite from his time in England, had already appeared in The Skin Game, Waltzes From Vienna, and Foreign Correspondent, in which he had a juicy cameo as Rowley the assassin. And  John Forsythe would appear in Topaz fourteen years later.

Where’s Hitch?   Hitchcock’s cameo comes at around the 21-minute mark.  When Wiggy looks out the window of her general store and sees the old man looking at the painting, Hitchcock can be seen walking along the road from right to left.

What Hitch said:   When he spoke with Truffaut, Hitchcock had the following to say about this film:

I chose that novel and was given a free hand with it…I didn’t change it very much.  To my taste, the humor is quite rich.  One of the best lines is when old Edmund Gwenn is dragging the body along for the first time and a woman comes up to him on the hill and says, “What seems to be the trouble, Captain?”  To me that’s terribly funny; that’s the spirit of the whole story.

I’ve always been interested in establishing a contrast, in going against the traditional and in breaking away from cliches.  With Harry I took melodrama out of the pitch-black night and brought it out in the sunshine.  It’s as if I had set up a murder alongside a rustling brook and spilled a drop of blood in the clear water.  These contrasts establish a counterpoint; they elevate the commonplace in life to a higher level.  

Definitive edition:  The Universal blu-ray released in 2013 features excellent sound and picture.  The Vista Vision format translates very well in HD, and the movie looks lovely.  Also included are a documentary clocking in at a little over half an hour, which includes interview footage with actor John Forsythe and screenwriter John Michael Hayes; and production photographs.  The trailer included is not the original theatrical trailer, but rather a VHS release trailer from the late 1980’s.  I’m not sure why the original trailer was not included, as it was on every other Universal blu-ray release;  it can be found online in widescreen format with a little searching.

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REAR WINDOW (1954) PART TWO: THEMES AND IDEAS

Beginnings:  Alfred Hitchcock frequently began his movies with a scene that introduces the viewer to both character and setting in an understated, economical way.   The opening scene of Rear Window is perhaps the best opening of any Hitchcock film.   After the curtains raise, Hitchcock does a slow counterclockwise pan of the courtyard.  He is not introducing us to characters yet, he is just giving us the lay of the land.

After completing a circle, the camera pulls in the window ending on Jimmy Stewart’s sweat covered brow.  Hitchcock then cuts for the first time, to a close up of a thermometer hovering in the mid 90’s.  Then the camera does another, even slower counterclockwise revolution of the courtyard.  This time, he begins to show us many of the characters we will encounter throughout the film.

Then the camera pulls into Jimmy Stewart’t window again, and continues, all in one unbroken shot, to show us a series of images:

 

 

 

 

Before we have had a word of dialogue, we know the precise layout of the courtyard and apartment.  We know our leading man’s name (it is written on the cast), we know his profession, we know he has a broken leg and we know how he got it, courtesy of the smashed camera and photo of a race car with a loose tire flying off.   All of this is done in with only two editorial cuts, and no dialogue.

Montage:  Much of what makes this movie work is Alfred Hitchcock’s use of montage.  Throughout the film we see Jimmy Stewart look at something, then we see what he is looking at, then we see Jimmy Stewart’s reaction shot.  As in the series of images below:

Here is what Alfred Hitchcock had to say on the subject in a 1973 interview in Antaeus:

There are too many films with what I call photographs of people talking…You see, most people get confused; they think that galloping horses are cinema.  They are not.  They are photographs of galloping horses.  Pure cinema is montage, the joining together of pieces of film and creating an idea.  It’s like putting words together in a sentence.  From that comes the audience’s emotion.  Rear Window, possibly one of the most cinematic pictures that anyone’s ever attempted, depended upon cutting to what a man is seeing, then cutting back to his reaction.  What you’re doing is using his face to create a thought process.

In conversation with Truffaut, Hitchcock said:

Pudovkin dealt with this, as you know.  In one of his books on the art of montage, he describes an experiment by his teacher, Kuleshov.  You see a close-up of the Russian actor Ivan Mosjoukine.  This is immediately followed by a shot of a dead baby.  Back to Mosjoukine again and you read compassion on his face.  Then you take away the dead baby and you show a plate of soup, and now, when you go back to Mosjoukine, he looks hungry.  Yet, in both cases, they used the same shot of the actor;  his face was exactly the same.  In the same way, let’s take a close-up of Stewart looking out of the window at a little dog that’s being lowered in a basket.  Back to Stewart, who has a kindly smile.  But if in place of the little dog you show a half-naked girl exercising in front of her open window, and you go back to a smiling Stewart again, this time he’s seen as a dirty old man!

Hitchcock used montage in many of his films, but never so completely as he does here.

Voyeurism:  Rear Window deals with this subject in a couple of different ways.  It is a direct commentary on people who spy on their neighbors.   As Stella tells Jeff:  “We’ve become a race of peeping Toms.  What people oughta do is get outside their own house and look in for a change.”

Jeff himself speculates:  “I wonder if it’s ethical to watch a man with binoculars and a long focus lens.”

And later, Detective Doyle will tell both Jeff and Lisa:  “That’s a secret, private world you’re looking into out there,” and later:  “People do a lot of things in private they couldn’t possibly explain in public.”

Jeff and Lisa are actually thrilled with watching the goings-on in the Thorwald apartment, and even disappointed when they believe for a moment that there is a logical explanation for all they have seen, and Thorwald is indeed innocent.    Of course, the audience is complicit in Jeff’s peeping.  Isn’t the act of movie-going very much like spying on a private world?  It is no accident that Hitchcock shot this movie in a 1.66:1 camera aspect ratio, for this mirrors almost exactly the size of the longer windows in the movie.

Here are the curtains going up on the opening shot, just as the curtains rise at a performance.  Later on, Lisa will close the curtains, saying “show’s over.”  It is almost like intermission.   Of course, they won’t stay closed for long.  They then close again at the end, over the Paramount logo.   When Jeff is looking through all of those windows, it is like he is watching his own series of private movies.  One of the most powerful and beautiful shots in the film comes late, when Jeff and Stella are distracted by Miss Lonelyhearts in the lower window, and stop watching Lisa inside Thorwald’s apartment.  Then, suddenly, both women are drawn to the window by the composer’s music.

It’s rather like watching both films of a double feature at the same time, and not knowing which feature to focus on.  When the police come to Thorwald’s apartment, and  Thorwald sees Lisa signaling with the ring, he looks directly at the camera, and directly at us.  This is the most unsettling moment in the movie, for now the watcher has become the watched.

At the film’s climax, when Lars Thorwald enters Jeff’s apartment, and asks “What do you want from me?”  he is addressing the audience too.  And as is typical of Hitchcock, he subverts expectations here.  We actually feel a little sorry for this sad, quiet man.  And maybe even a little guilty for our spying.  Of course this doesn’t last long.  After all, a bad guy must be a bad guy in the end.

We will let Hitchcock have the final word on voyeurism:

I’ll bet you that nine out of ten people, if they see a woman across the courtyard undressing for bed, or even a man puttering around in his room, will stay and look; no one turns away and says, ‘It’s none of my business’.

If you want to be really mean towards the character in this film you could call him a Peeping Tom.  I don’t necessarily think it’s a statement of morality because it’s a statement of fact.  You don’t hide from it, there’s no point in my leaving it out.  When Grace Kelly says that they are a couple of fiendish ghouls because they’re disappointed that a murder hasn’t been committed she’s speaking the truth.

A man and a woman:  The real underlying theme in this movie is that of relationships between men and women, and the seemingly irreconcilable differences that separate the sexes.   It is only through compromise that relationships will work, Hitchcock and screenwriter John Michael Hayes seem to be telling us.  The subject of relationships, and the dialogue to be found in such scenes, is Hayes greatest strength.  Not only is this his greatest screenplay;  it is one of the strongest screenplays to ever come out of Hollywood.

We first meet Lisa Fremont with arguably the greatest kiss ever captured on screen.  It is idealized and romanticized to the point of seeming like a fantasy, with a slowed down, close up image.  We have to ask ourselves, is this how it really happened, or how Jeff imagined it to be?

Of course, this idealized love doesn’t last long.  Very soon, they are bickering.  Lisa wants a committed relationship, but Jeff won’t agree to it.  He thinks they are from different worlds, and can’t compromise enough to make it work.  Of course this doesn’t keep him from wanting to keep things “status quo.”

As Jeff looks out in the courtyard, virtually every window tells the tale of a relationship, and will therefore remind him of his own.  First and foremost, there is Lars Thorwald and his wife.  She is supposed to be an invalid, but doesn’t look to be in very bad shape.  She is very critical of Lars Thorwald.  Jeff comments while talking to his editor on the phone about not wanting to become a husband going home to his nagging wife.  Note also, the nightgown that Mrs. Thorwald is wearing is almost exactly like the one that Lisa will wear later in the film.

There is also the newlywed couple, whose closed curtain imply the marriage is being consummated quite thoroughly.  And yet by the end, they are bickering too.  Miss Lonelyhearts is desperate for love, with a desperation that elevates to the brink of disaster.  Miss Torso is pushing men away throughout the film, “juggling wolves” as Lisa calls it.   You could say that the composer is married to his work.  Stella talks about her strong marriage, calling herself and her husband “a couple of maladjusted misfits” and saying the only way you could get her wedding ring off would be to chop off her finger.   And Detective Doyle is a family man, who is not averse to admiring Miss Torso himself.

When Lisa begins to take chances, when she leaves the note under Thorwald’s door, that is the moment that Jeff begins to really fall in love with her.  To make sure we notice this, Hitchcock gives us a close up of Stewart’s face.

When Lisa is in Thorwald’s apartment, signaling to Jeff that she has the ring, the double meaning of the image can’t be mistaken.  She is pointing repeatedly to a wedding ring on her finger.  She has found Mrs. Thorwald’s ring, but it is also symbolic of her desire to wed Jeff.

The movie does have a mostly happy ending (except of course for poor Mrs. Thorwald), but there is that little twist at the end.  Miss Torso is married to a scrawny soldier who is more interested in the contents of her icebox than her bikini.  Miss Lonelyhearts and the composer are brought together by music, at least in a friendly way (One can’t really imagine them becoming a couple).  The couple with the dog have got a new puppy, the newlyweds are bickering.  And Lisa is reading a book about climbing the Himalayas, at least until she is sure Jeff is asleep.  Then she grabs her Harper’s Bizarre.  Compromise is the name of the game.

Sound and vision:  Nothing seen or heard in a Hitchcock movie is ever there by accident, and never more so than here, where Hitchcock had such close control of every aspect of production.    Hitchcock had an all-star team on this movie, and they all worked together seamlessly.  From Robert Burks cinematography, to Edith Head’s costumes, to Hal Pereira’s art direction and Franz Waxman’s music, every piece of the puzzle fit together perfectly.

The above image is a good example of all of these technical elements working together.

Hitchcock also found many interesting ways to film the characters in Stewart’s apartment, without anything ever feeling staged.

Lisa wears a pale green here, mirroring the green that Miss Lonelyhearts is wearing as she prepares to go out on the town.  Here is what Hitchcock had to say about Miss Lonelyhearts color palette:

Miss Lonelyhearts always dressed in emerald green. To make sure that that came off, there was no other green in the picture, because we had to follow her very closely when she went across the street into the cafe.  So I reserved that color for her.

There final scene with Detective Doyle, Jeff and Lisa plays out with long takes and very little cutting.  Hitchcock has the actors keep moving around, and regrouping, so the shot composition is always engaging.

One of the most overlooked aspects of this film is also one of its most brilliant, and that is the movie’s musical score.    The score exists of only existing musical elements.  It other words, all of the sounds we hear come to us from the open window of Jeff’s apartment, the songs are either on someone’s radio, or emanating from the composer’s apartment.  And the songs all perfectly suit what is taking place on the screen.  While Jeff is watching the newlyweds enter their apartment, we can hear an instrumental version of “That’s Amore”.   When Miss Lonelyhearts is having dinner with her imaginary beau, the rather cruelly ironic song playing is Bing Crosby’s “To See You Is To Love You”.   Later, when Miss Lonelyhearts crosses the street to the bar, we hear “Waiting For My True Love To Appear.”    The greatest musical element, however, is the song “Lisa”, which we actually hear being composed as the movie progresses.  In other words, the composer, in his apartment, is writing the movie’s score as we watch the movie.  When Lisa first comes in Jeff’s apartment, we hear someone practicing scales.  Obviously this is the warm up, before the real work begins.  Then, over the course of a few scenes, we see the composer developing his song, culminating in the scene where both Lisa and Miss Lonelyhearts are captivated by the song.  And finally, in the movie’s very last scene, we hear a recorded version of the song, which is named after Grace Kelly’s character.

Hitchcock thought that this idea of developing a song as the movie progressed was a failure.  I disagree.  I just think that the story is so strong, it gets lost in the background.  I would strongly encourage anyone who is a big fan of this movie to watch it again, focusing on the sound and music.  You just might be amazed.

REAR WINDOW (1954): “What do you want from me?”

REAR WINDOW (1954) – Paramount Pictures – ★★★★★

Color – 112 minutes – 1.66:1 aspect ratio

Directed by Alfred Hitchcock

Principal cast:  James Stewart (L.B. Jefferies), Grace Kelly (Lisa Fremont), Thelma Ritter (Stella), Raymond Burr (Lars Thorwald), Wendell Corey (Detective Tom Doyle), Judith Evelyn (Miss Lonelyhearts), Ross Bagdasarian (songwriter), Georgine Darcy (Miss Torso).

Screenplay by John Michael Hayes, based on the story “It Had To Be Murder” by Cornell Woolrich

Cinematography by Robert Burks

Edited by George Tomasini

Music by Franz Waxman

Costumes by Edith Head

(My Rear Window analysis will be broken into three parts.  This is part one.)

Firing on all cylinders:   Alfred Hitchcock began his tenure at Paramount Pictures in 1954 flying high.  His last movie for Warner Bros., Dial M For Murder, was a box office hit.  And Paramount was granting him more freedom than he’d ever had.  He was bursting with energy and creativity.  And he chose Rear Window as his first Paramount film.

The movie stars Jimmy Stewart as L.B. Jefferies, a professional photographer who broke his leg in pursuit of a photo, and is now stuck in his apartment, in a wheelchair.  With little else to do, he begins to watch his neighbors, looking in their apartment windows from his own.  He is just passing the time, until the invalid wife of the traveling salesman across the courtyard disappears.  And the salesman (Raymond Burr) is acting strange.  Did he kill his wife?  That is the question that “Jeff” seeks to answer, with the help of a trio of people.   His girlfriend is fashion model Lisa Fremont, played by the exquisitely beautiful Grace Kelly.  The insurance company nurse that looks in on him is Stella (Thelma Ritter), who dispenses homespun wisdom along with her care.  And finally there is Detective Doyle (Wendell Corey), and old war buddy who investigates the salesman at Jeff’s request.   Jeff and Lisa spend the bulk of the movie trying to untangle a murder plot, as well as untangling their own relationship issues.

(For a detailed look at the movies themes, please see part two of this analysis.)

Hitchcock as God:  Alfred Hitchcock notoriously disliked filming on location.  Despite the fact that he did some wonderful location shooting in his career, he much preferred the confines of the studio, where he was more in control of the environment.  Rear Window was a dream come true for Hitch, because the entire movie was shot on one massive set built on Stage 18 at Paramount Studios.  The set featured the back side of four apartment buildings, facing onto an interior courtyard.   The set was so tall that the “ground floor” was actually thirty feet below the studio’s original floor.  It was one of the largest and most impressive sets ever constructed.

With the pull of a lever, Hitchcock could change the lighting from dawn, to midday, to dusk, to night.  He could even make it rain on cue.  He also controlled the individual lights and sounds emanating from every apartment, as well as controlling every action sound uttered by everyone on screen.

Here is what Hitchcock had to say about the fictional world he created:

It shows every kind of human behavior-a real index of individual behavior.  The picture would have been very dull if we hadn’t done that.  What you see across the way is a group of little stories that…mirror a small universe.

One small portion of Hitchcock’s impressive Rear Window set.

Performance:   There are only five characters that ever appear in Jeff’s apartment; every other performance is seen from a distance.  Jimmy Stewart and Grace Kelly are nothing short of iconic in their leading roles.  They inhabit the characters perfectly, and play off of each other equally well.   Thelma Ritter is one of the greatest character actors to ever appear on screen, and gives one of her best performances here.   (Interestingly, Ritter was nominated for Best Supporting Actress six times, never winning.  This was not one of her Oscar-nominated roles).  And Wendell Corey gives arguably the role of his all-too-short life as Detective Doyle.  Raymond Burr is the typical sympathetic villain.  The rest of the characters have to act “from a distance”, as it were.  Imagine having several moments of screen time in a movie, but only being filmed in long shots.  Every single character works perfectly as a piece of the ensemble, to create the harmonized feel of the picture as a whole.

Source material:  John Michael Hayes adapted his screenplay from a 40-page short story by Cornell Woolrich titled “It Had To Be Murder”.  Woolrich was a talented noir crime writer who wrote dozens of engaging novels and short stories, many with a dark, ironic twist ending.  Hitchcock enjoyed Woolrich’s writing.  Several of his short stories would later be adapted for the Alfred Hitchcock Presents TV show, and Hitchcock himself would direct a TV adaptation of another Woolrich short story for the NBC anthology show Suspicion.

The most significant plot element in Rear Window is lifted directly from the story: a man with a cast on his leg, trapped in his apartment, begins watching his neighbors to pass the time, and suspects one of them may be guilty of murdering his wife.  Everything else in the film comes directly from the minds of John Michael Hayes and Alfred Hitchcock.  There is no love interest in the story;  no insurance nurse tending to his needs.  Instead he has a guy named Sam who looks after him.  There is no Ms. Lonelyhearts, no Miss Torso, no Composer, none of the other side stories that help to make the film so rich and complete.

The first person narrator of the story is Hal Jeffries, rather than LB, but still has the nickname Jeff.  And the oh-so perfect name Lars Thorwald comes directly from the story.  Jeff also has a detective friend in the story, named Boyne.  He is the equivalent of Doyle in the film.

The story is quite gripping.  This description of the moment when the narrator first begins to suspect his neighbor of murder is quite good, and was slightly adapted for use in the movie.  Jeff says this about Lars Thorwald:

He was leaning out, maybe an inch past the window frame, carefully scanning the back faces of all the houses abutting on the hollow square that lay before him.  You can tell, even at a distance, when a person is looking fixedly.  There’s something about the way the head is held.  And yet his scrutiny wasn’t held fixedly to any one point, it was a slow, sweeping one, moving along the houses…I wondered vaguely why he had given that peculiar, comprehensive, semicircular stare at all the rear windows around him.  There wasn’t anyone at any of them, at such an hour.  It wasn’t important, of course.  It was just a little oddity, it failed to blend in with his being worried or disturbed about his wife.  When you’re worried or disturbed, that’s an internal preoccupation, you stare vacantly at nothing at all.  When you stare around you in a great sweeping arc at windows, that betrays external preoccupation, outward interest.  One doesn’t quite jibe with the other.

Near the story’s climax, just as in the movie, Jeff calls Thorwald and says he knows about his wife.  And just as in the movie, Thorwald discovers who has contacted him, and goes to Jeff’s apartment to confront him.  In the story Thorwald is much more determined and aggressive.  Jeff takes a large ceramic bust, “of Rousseau or Montesquieu, I’d never been able to decide which”, and places it in front of him on his chair.  Thorwald shoots at the shadowed outline of the bust, and the bust stops the bullet.  Then the police arrive, chasing Thorwald, and he falls to his death.

Recurring players:  Jimmy Stewart had already appeared in Rope, and would later appear in The Man Who Knew Too Much (1956 remake) and Vertigo.  Grace Kelly had just starred in Dial M For Murder, and would also star in Hitchcock’s next film To Catch A Thief.   Sara Berner (the woman with the dog) would have a small role in North by Northwest, at least her voice would (she is the telephone operator that Cary Grant speaks to at the Plaza Hotel).  Jesslyn Fax (sculptress) and Len Hendry (policeman) had small uncredited roles in North by Northwest.  Anthony Warde (detective that mentions the hatbox at the end) will have a role as another policeman in The Man Who Knew Too Much (1956).  Fred Graham (one of police that goes to Thorwald’s apartment) would later play the policeman that falls off the roof at the beginning of Vertigo.   Bess Flowers (songwriter’s party guest with poodle), known as the Queen of Hollywood extras, appeared as an extra in seven other Hitchcock films.  Voice talent Art Gilmore, whose voice can be heard on the radio, had performed the same service on Saboteur.  

Academy Awards:  Rear Window received four Oscar nominations:  Alfred Hitchcock for Best Direction, Robert Burks for Best Color Cinematography, John Michael Hayes for Best Adapted Screenplay, and Loren L. Ryder for Best Sound Recording.   Unfortunately, they all went home empty-handed on Oscar night.

Box office success:  Rear Window was the highest-grossing film of 1954, eventually earning $36 million at the box office, and making it Hitchcock’s highest-earning film up to that point.

Burr as Selznick?   This is what Raymond Burr looked like in 1954.

If you’ve ever wondered why Hitchcock dramatically altered Burr’s appearance for the role of Lars Thorwald, he had a very specific reason.  Hitchcock had Burr made up to resemble producer David O. Selznick.   Selznick of course had famously signed Hitchcock to a seven-year contract in 1940, luring Hitchcock to the United States.  While their partnership began with much promise, it ended rather poorly.  Hitchcock had certainly had his fill of Selznick’s micro-managing.  So several years later, Hitchcock decided to take a subtle jab at his former producer, by making the wife and dog killing Lars Thorwald resemble him.  Hitchcock never directly addressed this in any interview, and the average moviegoer would have been completely unaware.  But most Hollywood insiders would have been in on the joke.

Burr and Selznick.

Where’s Hitch?  This film features my personal favorite of all Hitchcock’s cameos.  At about the 26:15 mark, Hitchcock can be seen winding the clock on the mantel in the composer’s apartment.  As he is winding it, he turns and looks over his shoulder, speaking to the composer as he sits at the piano.

Hitchcock, winding a clock and speaking to Ross Bagdasarian in his “Rear Window” cameo.

What Hitch said:  Hitchcock had much to say about this film over the years.   When talking with Truffaut, Hitch said:

It was the possibility of doing a purely cinematic film.  You have an immobilized man looking out.  That’s one part of the film.  The second part shows what he sees  and the third part shows how he reacts.  This is actually the purest expression of a cinematic idea…I was feeling very creative at the time, the batteries were well charged.

In a piece written for Take One in 1968, Hitchcock had a lot of interesting comments to make, including more on the idea of montage:

It’s composed largely of Mr. Stewart as a character in one position in one room looking out onto his courtyard.  So what he sees is a mental process blown up in his mind from the purely visual.  It represents for me the purest form of cinema which is called montage;  that is, pieces of film put together to make up an idea.

Hitch also says:

Rear Window has a happy ending, but I don’t think you have to drag in a happy ending.  I think that an audience will accept any ending as long as it’s reasonable.

Definitive edition:  Universal’s 2014 blu-ray release is fantastic.  First of all, the picture quality is amazing.   Watching this blu-ray on a large hi-def TV reveals many never before noticed details.  The soundtrack is fantastic too.  Included with the movie are several extra features.   First and foremost is a wonderful commentary track by John Fawell, author of a book about Rear Window.  This is hands down one of the most informative commentary tracks I’ve ever heard, without ever becoming too dry or scholarly.  Also included is a 55-minute making of documentary, a 13-minute interview with screenwriter John Michael Hayes,  two other mini-documentaries, a half hour vintage interview with Hitchcock conducted in the early 70’s, and audio excerpts from the Truffaut interview sessions.  In addition, the blu-ray has both the original and re-release theatrical trailers.

TO CATCH A THIEF (1955): “I bet you told her all your trees were Sequoias.”

TO CATCH A THIEF (1955) – Paramount – ★★★★

Color – 106 minutes – 1.85:1 aspect ratio

Directed by Alfred Hitchcock

Principal cast:  Cary Grant (John Robie), Grace Kelly (Frances Stevens), Jessie Royce Landis (Jessie Stevens), John Williams (H. H. Hughson), Brigitte Auber (Danielle Foussard).

Screenplay by John Michael Hayes, from the novel by David Dodge

Cinematography by Robert Burks

Edited by George Tomasini

Music by Lyn Murray

Costumes by Edith Head

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   Alfred Hitchcock entered 1955 riding a hot streak, with the back-to-back smash hits Dial M For Murder and Rear Window, and that streak would continue with To Catch A Thief.    The movie opens with one of Hitchcock’s typical vignettes.  A black cat creeps on a rooftop.  Cut to a woman screaming; her jewels have been stolen.  Cut to the same black cat, slinking by a windowsill.  Then another woman screaming.  Finally we cut to a black cat sleeping comfortably on Cary Grant’s sofa, as he reads a newspaper article about a jewel thief named “the cat”.   A simple but effective story set up.

 To Catch A Thief is often cited as Hitchcock lite:  a good-looking movie that offers little of the subtext or dark undercurrents to be found in many of his best movies.  Actually, all of Hitchcock’s favorite themes are on display here, and while the tone is light, the movie is always entertaining, and pleasing to the palate.

First of all, we have the innocent man falsely accused, in the form of Cary Grant’s John Robie:  a man who was once a jewel thief, but who now just wishes to live quietly in his villa near the French Riviera (don’t we all?)  But now, someone has begun stealing jewels, using his methods, and the police want to arrest him.  There is a Hitchcock double chase (the innocent man chasing after the real criminal, while himself being chased by the police), but the difference between this movie and the many others with this theme (such as The 39 Steps and North by Northwest)  is that the action is more static here.  Also,  the hero is suspected of being merely a thief, not a murderer, as is usually the case.  One never truly feels like Grant is in any real danger.

Next we have the icy maiden as leading lady.  Grace Kelly’s character has a cool demeanor, but inside she is about to bubble over.   She is Frances Stevens, travelling in Europe with her rich mother, whose jewels are a target for the thief.  Observe the transformation of Kelly’s character as the movie progresses, and she becomes more overtly sexual.  Interestingly she is also turned on by the thought of Cary Grant’s character being a thief.  She wants him to be a thief; as a matter of fact, she is willing to help him steal.   This was Kelly’s third consecutive film for Hitchcock as his leading lady; she had clearly become a favorite of his, and it’s easy to see why.

And then there is the domineering mother, another recurring element in several Hitchcock films.  Grace Kelly’s mother is perfectly played by Jessie Royce Landis, who would later play Cary Grant’s mother in North by Northwest.  Her level head and straight talk make her a polar opposite of her daughter, and provide many of the best moments in the film.

And subtle (or not so subtle) sexual humor?   This film contains more double entendres than any film Hitchcock ever made.  Special acknowledgment goes to John Michael Hayes, who crafted a screenplay that is full of more quotable lines than five average movies.  His dialogue is witty, flirty, breezy, and never boring.

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And a great climax, occuring in a high place?  John Robie unmasks the real cat thief, and clears his name, on the rooftop of a French villa, which has just hosted a lavish costume party.  The entire party sequence is a lovely set piece, with gorgeous costumes designed by Edith Head (of course) who once said this was her favorite movie to work on.

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Above you can see the gorgeous set from the film’s finale,  on a sound stage at Paramount.

Some people have delved deeper into this movie, examining themes of guilt and trust, but since Hitchcock himself said the movie was not meant to be taken seriously, we will take him at his word.   But just because it is not serious does not mean it is not worth watching.  It is expertly made, gorgeously shot, well acted, with a memorable and funny screenplay.

Performances:  As is usually the case in Hitchcock movies, some of the most interesting performances are in the supporting cast.  Of course the two leads are great, as I’ve already mentioned.  But equally great is John Williams as insurance man H.H. Hughson.  And Jessie Royce Landis steals every scene she is in.   Her part is very well written, but she elevates the character beyond the written word.  And Brigitte Auber, as the second love interest for Cary Grant, is quite good as well.

Source material:  The movie is based on a novel by David Dodge.   Considering it is over 60 years old, the novel reads very well today.  It’s tone is light, and it breezes along, much like the movie.  The main plot points were all transferred from the book directly to the movie.  There are some minor changes.  In the novel, Robie actually dons a physical disguise after fleeing from the police at his villa, so they will not recognize him.  Robie also has a friend named Paul, a character that is eliminated from the movie altogether.  This friend falls in love with Danielle, the jewel thief, which complicates things at the ending.  Although screenwriter John Michael Hayes kept much of the plot, he did bring a lot of original dialogue to the movie.  Dialogue was Hayes’ specialty, and this screenplay features many gems.   As mentioned before, he packs the screenplay with double entendres;  it’s amazing that they all passed muster with the censors.

Academy awards:  Robert Burks won a much-deserved Oscar for Best Color Cinematography.  The movie was also nominated in the Best Costume and Best Color Art Direction-Set Decoration categories.

Robert Burks, cameraman:  Rather than a full scene deconstruction, we are going to take a look at one sequence in the movie, with particular attention paid to Robert Burks Oscar-winning cinematography.  Burks was the director of photography on 12 of Alfred Hitchcock’s films.  In addition to this movie, he shot Rear Window, Vertigo, North by Northwest, and 8 other titles.  One could argue that he was the most important technical collaborator of Hitchcock’s career.

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This is the scene where Frances Stevens (Grace Kelly) attempts to seduce John Robie (Cary Grant).  She is attempting to lure him with both her body and the necklace she is wearing.   In the shot above, Kelly’s face is in the shadows, forcing Robie’s (and the viewer’s) attention to the objects of desire. The green light on the curtains is a great touch as well.

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The two are drawn closer together, with Grace Kelly’s character being the aggressor, while Cary Grant’s Robie is on the defensive.  Look at the above shot.  First, the two characters frame the window.   Grant stands rigid, while Grace Kelly is relaxed, seductive.  The fireworks are on display behind them.  Next observe the color composition.  Out the window is a deep blue.  The streak of green runs through the center of the frame, with the actors standing just inside it.  You can see that Grace Kelly’s hair appears green.  The light has almost a pinkish tint on the right, and there are deep shadows in the top left of frame, and bottom right.

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The characters are slowly drawn together, then they part.  Grace Kelly sits down on the couch, and now we are seeing her from Grant’s point of view; she is bathed in a brighter, natural light, finally showcasing her absolutely breathtaking face.

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Back to a two-shot as Grant joins her on the couch.  Now they are surrounded again by that ethereal green light as they draw into a kiss and recline on the sofa.tocatchathief6

Next, a cut to the fireworks out the window.  This may be the on-screen birth of the now-trite fireworks as sex metaphor.

 

Where’s Hitch?  Alfred Hitchcock’s cameo appears at about the 9:38 mark of this movie.  It is one of the most self-aware cameos of his career.  Cary Grant boards a bus outside his villa, and takes a seat in the very back.  On the seat to his right sits a birdcage with some birds in it.  He then looks to his left, and the camera pans over to show Hitchcock sitting right next to him, stoically looking ahead.

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Recurring players:  Cary Grant had appeared in Suspicion and Notorious, and would later appear in North by Northwest.  Grace Kelly had earlier starred in Dial M For Murder and Rear Window.  Jessie Royce Landis would appear with Cary Grant again (as his mother!) in North by Northwest.  The inimitable John Williams had already been in The Paradine Case and Dial M For Murder.  Lewis Charles (man with milk saucer in Bertanis) would later appear in Topaz.  Steven Geray had earlier appeared in Spellbound.  Gladys Holland (woman at roulette table), Edward Manouk (kitchen helper), Louis Mercier (croupier) and Donald Lawton (police detective) would show up briefly in The Man Who Knew Too Much remake.  Barry Norton had earlier had a bit part in Strangers on a Train, and Loulette Sablon had a bit part in Foreign Correspondent.  And lets not forget Bess Flowers, the most prolific extra in Hollywood history, who was an extra in this and seven other Hitchcock movies.

Cary Grant and the stalwart John Williams
Cary Grant and the stalwart John Williams

What Hitch said:  Alfred Hitchcock had very little to say about this movie, over the years.  He did call it “a lightweight story” and say “it wasn’t meant to be taken seriously.”

 Definitive edition:  Paramount released this movie on blu ray in 2012.  This print of the movie is breathtaking.  Edith Head’s beautiful costumes, and Robert Burks’ Oscar-winning cinematography are on fine display.  The blu ray contains a dry-but-informative commentary track by Drew Casper, and numerous featurettes:  A Night With the Hitchcocks, Film Censorship in Hollywood, Writing and Casting, The Making of, Behind the Gates, Alfred Hitchcock and To Catch A Thief, Edith Head:  The Paramount years, and Interactive Travelogue.  Also included are photo galleries and the original theatrical trailer.  It’s a shame Paramount did not port over the commentary track from the earlier DVD release, featuring Peter Bogdanovich and Laurent Bouzereau.  Their lighter tone was more suited to this movie than Drew Casper’s scholarly dissertation.

THE MAN WHO KNEW TOO MUCH (1956): “Don’t you realize that Americans dislike having their children stolen?”

THE Mman1956sevenAN WHO KNEW TOO MUCH (1956) – Paramount – Rating:  ★★★

Color – 120 mins. – 1.85:1 aspect ratio

Principal cast:  James Stewart (Dr. Ben McKenna), Doris Day (Jo McKenna), Christopher  Olsen (Hank McKenna), Bernard Miles (Edward Drayton), Brenda De Banzie (Lucy  Drayton), Daniel Gelin (Louis Bernard), Reggie Nalder (Rien).

Associate Producer:  Herbert Coleman

Written by John Michael Hayes, from a story by Charles Bennett and D.B. Wyndham-Lewis

Cinematography by Robert Burks

Edited by George Tomasini

Original Music by Bernard Herrmann

Costume Designer:  Edith Head

Art Direction by Hal Pereira and Henry Bumstead

Why would an A-list director like Alfred Hitchcock choose to remake one of his own films?  He certainly wasn’t the only high-profile director in the “golden age” of film to do so:  Frank Capra, Cecil B. DeMille, Howard Hawks and John Ford all directed remakes of earlier films in their catalogs.  It may have been producer David O. Selznick who first planted the seed in Hitchcock’s mind.   As early as 1941, Selznick told Hitchcock that he thought The Man Who Knew Too Much would be a good film to remake.  Hitchcock (who was under contract to Selznick at the time), actually began writing a new treatment of the story with John Houseman, but nothing ever came of it.

Fast-forward about 13 years.  Hitchcock was in the midst of his prolific run at Paramount Pictures in the mid 50’s.  He had cranked out 3 films in less than two years, all penned by screenwriter John Michael Hayes.   He owed Paramount one more movie, after which he had to fulfill a contractual obligation to Warner Brothers for a movie.  Hitchcock already knew what movie he was going to make for Warner Brothers:  The Wrong Man.  But what movie would he first make for Paramount?  A remake of  The Man Who Knew Too Much, also written by Hayes.

The basic plot of this remake is the same as in the original film.  The McKenna family, on vacation in an exotic locale, witness a murder, and the dying victim imparts vague knowledge of an upcoming assassination attempt.  The child in this family is kidnapped, to prevent the parents from disclosing what they know to the police.   So the parents set out to find their missing child on their own.

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This film can be divided neatly into two parts:  the first 49 or so minutes, which take place in Marrakesh, Morocco, and set up the murder and kidnapping; and the latter 71 minutes, which take place in London.  The first section is by far the weaker of the two;  the pace is at times drearily slow.  Consider that Hitchcock’s original version of this movie took less than 15 minutes to shift the action to London, and this version takes over three times as long.   There are two separate story threads at work in this first section of the movie.  The overlying one introduces us to Ben and Jo McKenna (played by Jimmy Stewart and Doris Day), and their son Hank (Christopher Olsen), travelling in Marrakesh.   The McKennas have several mysterious encounters, first with a man on a bus named Louis Bernard;  later outside their hotel where a woman appears to be staring at Jo; and finally with a rather odd-looking man who “accidentally” knocks on their hotel room door.   The attempt to slowly build up suspense has some nice touches, but overall it takes far too long to get going.  Even attempts at humor don’t always work;  much is made of Ben McKenna’s ignorance of (and annoyance with) eating customs in a traditional Moroccan restaurant.  Yet he has earlier stated that he was in Morocco during the war.  Certainly he would have observed some of the local customs?   The underlying storyline is far more interesting, and this focuses on the state of the McKennas’ marriage.

John Michael Hayes often focused in his screenplays on the difficulties in relationships, how sacrifices must be made for any relationship to succeed.   His screenplays often have men and women from different worlds, who have seemingly irreconcilable differences in career and hobbies.  The best example of this is in Rear Window, in which Jimmy Stewart’s character deflects all talk of marriage with the incredibly sublime Grace Kelly, because of their different jobs and social standing.  The movie ending hints at a possible compromise.  One could  argue that the McKennas in The Man Who Knew Too Much are a logical progression of the couple from Rear Window.  Ben McKenna is a successful doctor in Indianapolis, Jo is an accomplished singer on the Broadway stage, who gave up her career for her husband.    And thus is established a theme of patriarchal dominance (as pointed out by Steven DeRosa in his informative book “Writing with Hitchcock”) which is rather on point for mid-1950’s America, and might have made more than a few movie-going couples squirm in their seats a little.

There are a dozen examples of dialogue in the opening section of the movie that point to the frayed edges in the McKennas’ marriage, and most of them are written with the subtlety and humor that were Hayes’ trademark as a writer.   Jo questions why Ben couldn’t be a doctor in New York, so she could appear on Broadway.  She asks him when they will have another child, which clearly blindsides him.  When their son Hank is getting ready for bed and sings the line “When I was just a little boy, I asked my mother what would I be?” the McKennas exchange a knowing glance.  Clearly Ben wants his son to follow in his footsteps as a doctor, while Jo, by encouraging Hank’s singing, has other ideas.

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The male dominance established in the film’s early sequence is not always so subtle.  In the movies most disturbing scene, (and one of the most disturbing scenes in all of Hitchcock), Ben McKenna forces his wife to take a sedative before he tells her that their son has been kidnapped.   By modern sensibilities this goes beyond patronizing.  But I find it hard to believe that a 1950’s audience would have been any less disturbed.  Doris Day’s performance in this scene is gut-wrenching and unforgettable.   But as is usually the case with Hitchcock scripts, the male lead will be emasculated later on, and it is the female who will save the day.

As soon as the story transitions to London, the pace quickens, and this latter half of the movie is far better.  The McKennas work (first separately, then together) to locate their kidnapped child, with the major set piece of the film being the assassination attempt at the Royal Albert Hall, just as in the original version.  ( I will focus on a comparison between the Royal Albert Hall sequences in a later entry.)  It is Doris Day who prevents the assassination, by screaming to throw off the shooter’s aim.  And again it is Doris Day who uses her singing to attract the attention of her child in the movie’s final sequence.

Six minutes of self-indulgence:  In one of the movies better sequences, Jimmy Stewart’s character goes in search of a man named Ambrose Chapell, not realizing that the name refers to a place, not a person.  After a brilliant set-up, and escalation of tension, the sequence moves into a taxidermy shop (which seems to specialize in exotic animals),  where we quickly realize that Ben McKenna is not in the right place.  Further, his rather bizarre and disturbing dialogue alarms the shopkeepers (it sounds as if McKenna is proposing that they stuff a dead person!)  Clearly they think McKenna is a madman.   There is much jostling around, before McKenna flees.  This sequence ultimately serves no purpose in advancing the plot;  it exists only for it’s own sake.  The sole purpose is some comic relief, to deflate the building tension.  Hitchcock enjoyed sequences like this.  He once likened movies to riding a roller coaster, in that you have to give the audience ups and downs.

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Performance:  Jimmy Stewart is adequate in this film, but not nearly as strong as he was in both Rear Window and Vertigo.  He does have several good moments.  Doris Day, who is a polar opposite of the typical Hitchcock heroine, was astounding in this role.  She gives an outstanding performance.   Christopher Olsen has little to do in his role as Hank, and what he does is mostly forgettable.  In Hitchcock movies, it is female children that are given interesting and memorable roles.  Male children, as in this movie,  are used for comic relief more than anything.  Bernard Miles does a decent job as Drayton, the leader of the gang, but he is no Peter Lorre.   Brenda De Banzie does a very good job as Mrs. Drayton, especially as her maternal feelings begin to show in the later portion of the film.

Recurring players:  Jimmy Stewart appeared also in Rope, Rear Window and Vertigo.  Patrick Aherne was in The Paradine Case.  For trivia buffs, Frank Atkinson appeared in both versions of The Man Who Knew Too Much (in the first he is the policeman shot behind the mattress, in this one he works in the taxidermy shop) as well as Young and Innocent.   Betty Bascomb is the only other person to appear in both versions (in the original she gives up her room for the two policemen, in this one she is Edna, the glasses-wearing kidnapper).  I think Betty Bascomb is also in Sabotage;  she is not credited on imdb, but I am almost certain that the girl in the aquarium is her.   And of course Bess Flowers, the Queen of the Hollywood extras (who appeared in more movies than anyone in film history), was also in Mr. and Mrs. Smith, Notorious, Dial M for Murder, Rear Window, To Catch  a Thief, Vertigo, and North by Northwest.   Gladys Holland, Louis Mercier and Edward Manouk were also in To Catch a Thief.  Anthony Warde also had an uncredited role in Rear Window.

Where’s Hitch?  At the 25:40 mark, Alfred Hitchcock can be seen in the crowd of people in the marketplace, watching the performers.  He is to the left of the screen, seen from the rear.

Academy awards:  This movie was the winner of one Oscar in 1957, for best Original Song:  “Whatever Will Be, Will Be (Que Sera, Sera)”.   This was the only nomination the movie received.  Hitchcock was at first opposed to the use of a song, but the studio felt that it would be a missed opportunity to cast Doris Day in the lead and not have her sing.  Alfred Hitchcock was pleasantly surprised with the song penned by Jay Livingston and Ray Evans, which became a hit record after the release of the movie.

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What Hitch said:  In comparing this remake to his original film, Hitchcock said “Let’s say the first version is the work of a talented amateur and the second was made by a professional.”

Definitive edition:   The 2012 Universal blu-ray is by far the best-looking print of this movie available.   That being said, it is not a fantastic print.  There are some problem areas with the movie, where some colors will shift over the course of a scene (particularly skin tone).  On the other hand, some scenes are absolutely gorgeous.  The VistaVision process allowed for amazing image clarity and color separation.    Perhaps a true restoration will be done at some point, but in the meantime, this is as good as it gets.  The soundtrack is a two-track mono, and sounds very good.  Also included is a 34-minute making-of documentary, production photographs, and two trailers.