. Original theatre poster
(1948) Alfred Hitchcock
is an American thriller that is based on a play of the same name by Patrick Hamilton. It is the first of
Hitchcock’s Technicolor films and is noted
for takingplace in real time and being edited to appear as thoughit is a single continuous shot through the use of longtakes.
Rope is Hitchock's underrated classic thatcontains some of the most unique filmmaking of it'stime. Hitchcock was so far ahead of filmmakers backthen and so far ahead of a lot of the filmmakers today
(McCarthy, 2008)The film starts off with two young men, Brandon andPhillip, strangling their former class mate David. Thetwo of them committing the crime is all proving theirsuperiority by committing the perfect crime and gettingaway with it. They hide the body in a wooden chest andthen prepare for a dinner party they had planned forthe evening. The guests include David
s father, his aunt,fiancé and her former lover. The inspiration for themurder came from their prep-school house masterRupert who is also a guest at the party much to Philipshorror, as Philip believes Rupert will be able to tell what they have done. A lot of the conversationduring the dinner is focused on David
s absence and Rupert interrogates an increasingly nervousPhilip. Tension runs high as David
s father and fiancé become increasingly worried that David hasn
tcalled. Brandon fans the tension by setting upDavid
s fiancé and her former lover, whichincreases suspicion. After all the guests leaveRupert comes back under the pretence he hasleft his cigarette case. He pretends to lookaround and then find it. He then asks for a drinkand then theorise about David
s disappearance.Philip then snaps after to many drinks andRupert opens the trunk realising that they haveindeed killed David. He is ashamed that theyhave used his own rationalisation and twisted it.With the way this movie has been filmed as a long continuous shot it makes it seem more as a playrather than a film.
They're trapped, and so is the audience. Perversely, this cinematic experimentreplicates the theatrical experience: Rope feels "live", which means that at any minute one of theactors could do something unexpected, such as fluff their lines, or heaven forbid, open thetrunk.
(Hutchinson, 2012) It also makes the viewer feel as if you are watching events unfold in realtime as if you are one of the guests watching as tensions and suspicion slowly rise.
We open with amurder, and close with a gunshot that summons the cops. What happens in between is filmedexcruciatingly close to real time.