That this isn't frequently mentioned in the same breath as Vertigo stuns me, and to be honest I think it's the better film. Hitchcock and Connery's involvement almost makes it feel like a self-lacerating confession--Connery's Mark is a monster, a gaslighting, paternal rapist whose role as the movie's "hero" plays as a cruel joke (and is eerily reminiscent of Hitchcock's behind-the-scenes treatment of Tippi Hedrin, whose career he ruined when she refused his advances). Hedrin herself gives the best lead performance of any of the Hitchcock movies I've seen--she's a proto-Laura Palmer, a raw nerve of trauma barely covered by the criminal habits she's taken up in order to survive. Marnie succeeds where Vertigo fails--that movie's greatest weakness is its relative lack of attention to Madeline/Judy outside the lens of Scotty's obsession, while this one puts us through Marnie's torment to a degree that would be histrionic in lesser hands but instead is harrowing.
Rear Window is still my favorite Hitchcock, and that's not likely to change--besides being a masterclass in tension, it's incredibly fun to watch. This movie is decidedly not, but it takes the runner-up spot. Due for a critical reevaluation, to say the least.
Last edited by Abbie (Today 05:36:47)