“Rear Window” trailer trash

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Screen shot from trailer for the movie “Rear Window.” (mentalfloss.com)

Here is a marvelous set of factoids from the website Mental Floss, called “12 Thrilling Facts about ‘Rear Window,” the 1954 movie starring Jimmy Stewart and Grace Kelly, who investigate a murder through his rear window. And I will assure you that thrilling is not an overstatement by author Kristin Hunt, who starts out with the fact that the scene espied when Stewart opens his blinds is a set built in Hollywood for a shocking … but read it yourself.

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Grace Kelly and Jimmy Stewart (blu-ray.com)

As a confirmed voyeur myself, I feel constrained by my current home in a house with no view into anyone’s rear window. I often wish I still lived in the old Smith Building, downtown, where I could keep tabs on the goings-on at the Plunder Dome (City Hall, right outside my window), and look all the way to the end of Kennedy Plaza, to the waterfront and up College Hill. But I have also envied those who live in the Peerless Building, with its Peyton Place- esque view across the atrium at who goes into who’s apartment with whom. The same phenomenon prevails, too, amid the Arcade’s microlofts.

Hunt’s “Rear Window” piece also has a video of the Hitchcock movie’s trailer, which is quite titillating.

Speaking of which, the last factoid explains the book Kelly is reading in the film’s final scene, called Beyond the High Himalayas, by U.S. Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas.  Hunt calls this “a final wink” but then insists she is reading the book because it is an “ode to the great outdoors.” As opposed to the scene outside the rear window? I don’t think so. I think it is a wink at something else, or maybe two things. You be the judge.

About David Brussat

For a living, I edit the writing of some of the nation's leading architects, urbanists and design theorists. This blog was begun in 2009 as a feature of the Providence Journal, where I was on the editorial board and wrote a weekly column of architecture criticism for three decades. Architecture Here and There fights the style wars for classical architecture and against modern architecture, no holds barred. My freelance writing and editing on that topic and others addresses issues of design and culture locally and globally. I am a fellow of the Royal Society of the Arts, and a member of the board of the New England chapter of the Institute of Classical Architecture & Art, which bestowed an Arthur Ross Award on me in 2002. I work from Providence, R.I., where I live with my wife Victoria, my son Billy and our cat Gato. If you would like to invest your prose with even more style and clarity, please email me at my consultancy, dbrussat@gmail.com, or call 401.351.0457. Testimonial: "Your work is so wonderful - you now enter my mind and write what I would have written." - Nikos Salingaros, mathematician at the University of Texas, architectural theorist and author of many books.
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