There are numerous masterpieces which never get the recognition they deserve. Rope is one of them. Infact, if a list of 100 cinematic masterpiece films is made, more than 20 films will belong to Hitchcock. Rope is a 1948 thriller directed by this master, and is notable for taking place in real time and being edited so as to appear as a single continuous shot through the use of long takes. The film has only 8 cuts!

One criticism of the film that I don’t agree with, is that it is ‘too theatrical’. This movie is always brushed aside as ‘minor’, and ‘a failed experiment’, even by Hitchcock. Surely, a filmmaker with such refined cinematic sensibility can never be content with merely filming a play. In fact, Rope is a seminal film that clearly defines where theater ends and cinema begins. Hitchcock’s rigorous framing elucidates perfectly how cinema can be more restrictive than theater.

Hitchcock’s manipulation of space and his direction of the actors keep highlighting his central themes and character relationships. The shots are extremely long and fluid, giving a real sense of “being there” and not in the way those horrible shaky cams of today do.

I give it 8/10



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