Brandon and Philip are two young men who share a New York City apartment. They consider themselves intellectually superior to their friend David Kentley, and as a consequence, decide to murder him. Together they strangle David with a rope and placing the body in an old chest, they proceed to hold a small party. The guests include David's father, his fiancée Janet, and their old schoolteacher Rupert, from whom they mistakenly took their ideas. As Brandon becomes increasingly more daring, Rupert begins to suspect.Written by
Col Needham <firstname.lastname@example.org>
The long takes actually give the film the feel of a live/"recorded as live" tv program or stage play, which would have been a relatively standard technique to preserve and timeshift live performances before the advent of video tape recording, and to preserve recordings via telerecordings, as video tapes were expensive to keep, and were re-used. In fact, this film may have also inspired the later styles of tv continual take recording, which had earlier inspired the very same film style. See more »
During the party, the chest that houses David is tall enough to serve food from. However, by the end, as Rupert crosses to the chair next to it, the chest is only as tall as Rupert's knees. See more »
[David screams, to Phillip]
[they put David in the trunk and close it]
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In the end credits, the first credit is for the character of David Kentley who is only seen for a couple of seconds and has no spoken lines. Most of the other characters are listed with a descriptive phrase showing their relationship to David Kentley, or relationship among each other, just above the credit line(s) listing the character name and actor. The description and character name pairings are as follows: His friends - Brandon, Phillip; Their housekeeper - Mrs. Wilson; David's rival - Kenneth; David's girl - Janet; His father - Mr. Kentley; His aunt - Mrs. Atwater. The last character listed, Rubert Cadell, is the only one besides David Kentley without such a descriptive phrase. Also, David Kentley and Rupert Cadell are the only characters listed with both first and last names. See more »
Rope is one of the finer films that Hitchcock made. Philosophy, sociology and psychology are contained in equal parts. The plot is simple, the characters are complex and Hitchcock's treatment of the Leopold and Loeb parallel quite deft. The final soliloquy from Jimmy Stewart's character, Rupert, is not only one of the finest examples of Stewart's acting abilities but also of film-making.
On the subject of filmmaking - Hitchcock filmed this in as much of a single take as possible. I believe there are only five edits in the whole thing. I can wholeheartedly tell you that it was no gimmick on Hitchcock's part. The play's plot requires that a certain amount of tension be maintained. Tracking shots are used for this purpose and quite well in my opinion. Timing, position and prop movements alone are to force us to stand in awe of a logistical challenge. All the actors are played superbly. The dialogue is natural and flowing. The finest bit of timing involves a swinging kitchen door, the rope, and the fear of discovery.
In short, this is a fine film that cannot disappoint. Highly recommended and will be well worth your time.
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