Rope (1948)

Director: Alfred Hitchcock

Writer: Arthur Laurents (Screenplay) Patrick Hamilton (Play)

Starring: Dick Hogan, John Dall, Farley Granger, Edith Evanson, Douglas Dick, Joan Chandler, James Stewart

 

Plot: Two men attempt to prove they committed the perfect crime by hosting a dinner party after strangling their former classmate to death.


Tagline – Nothing ever held you like Alfred Hitchcock’s Rope

Runtime: 1 Hour 20 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Brilliant

 

Story: Rope starts when two men Brandon (Dall) and Phillip (Granger) murder their classmate, just before hosting a party, they hide the body in the apartment, while hosting the guests Kenneth (Dick), Janet (Chandler), Mr Kentley (Hardwicke), Mrs Atwater (Collier) and Rupert (Stewart).

As the party goes on the character interact about everyday life matters as Janet explains her choice in man between David and Kenneth, while Brandon and Phillip boast about what it would be like to murder somebody.

 

Thoughts on Rope

 

Characters – Rupert Cadell is the last guest to arrive, he is the men’s former house master and has known the men since they were boys, he starts to get suspicious of what is going on with the party, he tries to learn the secret Brandon and Phillip are keeping. Brandon is the mastermind of the two men, he has every single guest in the palm of his hands as the party continues, he is almost become arrogant about what the two men have done. Phillip is more nervous about crime the men have committed, he gets put through the wringer by Rupert who thinks he will spill the beans. Janet is the woman that is dating the murder victim, she is part of Brandon’s game who is trying to set her up with another friend Kenneth.

PerformancesJames Stewart might well be the biggest name in this film, but his role is more of a supporting one, he is fantastic still being one of the many outstanding performances through the film. John Dall and Farley Granger are both wonderful to watch as a double act trying to remain calm through the film. the rest of the cast are wonderful too.

StoryThe story follows two men who are hosting a party after murdering a friend, they are trying to prove they can get away with the murder on front of their friends and former mentor. This story is based on a play which you can see from early on because the story plays out over the one party, we see how each person interacts and can have difference of opinions. We are kept wondering if anybody will learn their secret and if they can continue to keep everything secret from everybody through the night.

Crime/MysteryThe Crime side of the film shows how quickly a couple of men can kill somebody, we see this murder in the opening scene as well as discussing different types of murder through the film too, the mystery comes to just why or what the motive is behind their murder, waiting to see if they can complete their masterplan.

SettingsThe film is set inside on apartment building, we never leave this location which shows how both arrogant and nervous the two men are.


Scene of the Movie –
The closing discussion.

That Moment That Annoyed Me It is very short, we could have gone on a little bit longer.

Final ThoughtsThis is a wonderfully entertain crime mystery, just to why the men committed the murder, we have top notch performances from the whole cast that never let anybody down.

 

Overall: Hitchcock’s master play.

Rating

 

 

James Bond Weekend – Die Another Day (2002)

Director: Lee Tamahori

Writer: Neal Purvis, Robert Wade (Screenplay)

Starring: Pierce Brosnan, Halle Berry, Toby Stephens, Rosamund Pike, Rick Yune, Judi Dench, John Cleese

 

Plot: James Bond is sent to investigate the connection between a North Korean terrorist and a diamond mogul, who is funding the development of an international space weapon.


Tagline – Events don’t get any bigger than..

Runtime: 2 Hours 13 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Weakest of Brosnan’s Bonds

 

Story: Die Another Day starts as James Bond (Brosnan) is captured by the North Korean army, he is tortured for 14 months before getting traded back for brother of man he was training to capture Zao (Yune). Taken off duty, James goes solo in search for Zao, which sees him meet Jinx (Berry) who is on her own secret mission against Zao.

The investigation leads James towards the diamond trade, with Gustav Graves (Stephens) becoming the main focus of the investigation, Gustav has a huge reputation and soon James gets close to learn what his master plan is all about.

 

Thoughts on Die Another Day

 

Characters – James Bond finds himself captured in this outing, tortured for months for information, never giving up any secrets. Once he is traded, he is taken off active duty, but wants to go in search of the man traded for him, it shows him working more covertly trying to take down Gustav, who he believes will lead him to his target. Jinx is the mysterious stranger that James meets on his mission, she is on her own mission against Zao. Gustav Graves is a diamond mogul that has risen to fame with a brand-new secret project in the works, this has captured the attention of James who is in search of his secret. Miranda Frost is the PR woman for Gustav, she is also undercover from MI6 one of her first missions.

PerformancesPierce Brosnan does everything right in his role, he never looks out of place in what would be his final outing. Halley berry brings us a much strong American performance which was needed after the last film. Toby Stephens makes for a basic Bond villain, he does have to play a slightly more complicated role than we have seen before. Rosamund Pike does the best she can with her role, she does get a fight sequence though.

StoryThe latest adventure of James Bond takes things to a darker tone than before, because we see how he is captured and held for a long period of time, no easy escape meaning he will need to figure out how to get his payback once he is released, which sees him hunting down a diamond mogul. This does continue our trend of James needing to work with someone to stop the villainous plan, everything tends to play out as you would imagine, with the only part that feels fresh being the idea that James isn’t easily freed from his captive state.

Action/AdventureThe action here is mixed to say the least, when we have the practical action this is entertaining and even the best scenes in the movie, when we get to the CGI moments it is horrible to watch.

SettingsThe film does return to the exotic location with Cuba and Iceland being the stand out locations of the film.

Special EffectsThis is the first Bond film where the effects need to be discussion because we have some of the worst you will ever see in any film, the tidal wave scene and the invisible car just look pathetic.

Scene of the Movie – Ice car chase.

That Moment That Annoyed Me That Tidal Wave.

Final ThoughtsThis is another film in he Bond franchise that just doesn’t deliver, it has some entertaining action sequences, but the CGI moments almost make moments laughable.

 

Overall: Disappointing Another Day

Rating