Watch: Alfred Hitchcock’s Clever Hidden Edits in ‘Rope’

Rope Poster Hitchcock

The most brilliant trick of Alfred Hitchcock‘s Rope is that it takes place in real time. The second most brilliant trick is that co-star John Dall looks unnervingly like a 1940s era Jason Sudeikis.

The result is that, in addition to being the textbook example of a bottle thriller, there’s a sense of incredible magic contained in how the film was made. The same way we marvel at the Cuaron/Lubezki artistry of That Scene from Children of Men, Rope elicits its own brand of awe thanks to Hitchcock, DPs William Skall and Joseph Valentine, and editor William Ziegler.

Fortunately, Vashi Nedomansky has compiled a video of the 10 hidden edits in the film (for everyone interested in knowing how the lady is sawed in half) and written an accompanying exploration of the simple, clever techniques.

The dissolve efforts are fairly noticeable — and have always been — but they provide an interesting version of a subtle act break considering we spend the entirety of the story in the same space. Plus, as Nedomansky points out, the dissolve and hard cuts alternate which was either a happy accident or something devilish from the production team.

Either way, it’s very, very cool. And it makes me want to watch Rope again.

A veteran of writing about movies for nearly a decade, Scott Beggs has been the Managing Editor of Film School Rejects since 2009. Despite speculation, he is not actually Walter Mathau's grandson. See? He can't even spell his name right.

Read More from Scott Beggs
Get Film School Rejects in your email. All the cool kids are doing it:
Previous Article
Next Article
Reject Nation
Leave a comment
Comment Policy: No hate speech allowed. If you must argue, please debate intelligently. Comments containing selected keywords or outbound links will be put into moderation to help prevent spam. Film School Rejects reserves the right to delete comments and ban anyone who doesn't follow the rules. We also reserve the right to modify any curse words in your comments and make you look like an idiot. Thank You!