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THE WOMAN IN THE WINDOW Review–Bloody and Electric Thriller

Posted by Chad Collins on May 15, 2021 The Woman in the Window Banner - THE WOMAN IN THE WINDOW Review--Bloody and Electric Thriller

Starring Amy Adams and Gary Oldman

Written by Tracy Letts

Directed by Joe Wright



It’s hard to imagine that Joe Wright’s The Woman in the Window, Netflix’s latest quasi-genre offering, didn’t start its production with the intention of being an elevated genre feature akin to something like Gone Girl, The Girl on the Train, or any other number of girl/women find themselves embroiled in danger movies. After all, that restructuring would be no different than Window’s scattershot release strategy, first pegged for an October 2019 release and then delayed until May of the following year after poor test screenings. Delayed further on account of the pandemic, the movie was ultimately purchased by Netflix and then unceremoniously released just this weekend, only a month after it was announced when it would be hitting the streaming behemoth.  

Related Article: Hitchcockian Horror Flick THE WOMAN IN THE WINDOW Hits Netflix 5/14

Drawing clear inspiration for its woman-in-peril forebears, The Woman in the Window shares its genetic makeup with the likes of Joan Crawford vehicle Sudden Fear, Otto Preminger’s Laura, and, yes, Hitchcock’s own Rear Window. There are shades, too, of latter subgenre entries, most obviously the Elizabeth Taylor starring Night Watch from 1973.

The Woman in the Window stars Amy Adams as Dr. Anna Fox, an agoraphobic and housebound woman convinced she’s witnessed the murder of new neighbor Jane Russell (Julianne Moore). No one believes her, especially once Jane Russell reappears, now played by Jennifer Jason Leigh. The Rear Window template is clear, and much fuss has been made about The Woman in the Window’s most obvious influence. I would argue, though, that beyond the “witnessing a murder no one believes” conceit, this Window shares more in common with the aforementioned Night Watch than anything else.

In Night Watch, Elizabeth Taylor, too, witnesses a murder that no one believes really happened. Whereas Hitchcock’s work with the concept was replete with suspense and classical filmmaking prowess, both Night Watch and The Woman in the Window instead opt for fervent urban gothic approaches. The unraveling of both women comes fast and hard. They are loud, brazen, disorienting, and unsettling.

The Woman in the Window is cacophonous, a contemporary Night Watch mimio. A thoroughly unhinged spiral into madness anchored by an (always) exceptional Amy Adams, the movie is a bloody, slasher-lite entrée, one where the danger feels both public and disquietingly private.

It is also very much a movie of expectations. Literary adaptations are always tricky, and with a work such as The Woman in the Window, as with most speculative thriller fiction, the sinuous psychological warfare, carefully plotted and doled out twists, and enduring tension prove difficult to translate, often manifesting as pop psychology and expository dumps that are more confounding than compelling.

Lines of dialogue that worked on the page sound alien when spoken by an actual person, even a performer of Adams’s acting caliber. It’s rushed, too, as if some specter offscreen was urging the production to move it along for the hell of it. Though zesty and energized and garnished with some fascinating stylistic flourishes– among them fake blood splashing across the screen or staging where Adams screams while framed by stairwell bannisters– The Woman in the Window endeavors to win a narrative race no one has asked for it to enter.

Also Read: SPIRAL: FROM THE BOOK OF SAW Review–Classic Horror Franchise Reimagined for a New Era

Characters such as tenant David (Wyatt Russell) are less characters than expository mouthpieces behaving as guiltily as possible, and Anna’s high-concept affliction–agoraphobia– is explored with all the nuance and depth one might expect in the age of ceaseless streaming. The condition is little more than a glossy veneer to give the movie a hook. The tension, too, has none of the book’s prudent pacing. The danger Anna is in for having witnessed a murder is made explicit in the text but only gestured toward on screen.

The Woman in the Window, at first, is uncertain what it wants to be, By the end, though, when bodies are dropped and faces are impaled with gardening equipment, it becomes clear. The Woman in the Window is a sleazy paranoia thriller, a highly stylized whodunnit and whydunnit, one that feels less like a movie at times and more like a dream vignette of what one thinks a movie should look like, but nonetheless remains consistently engaging. The jump scares work and the sheer bombast of Adams’s performance, the breakneck violence, and intoxicating, whistle-stop pace combine to form an irresistible tonic. It’s hard to tell how this one would have played in cinemas, but it feels right at home on Netflix’s service. Pull back the curtains and take a look– you might like what you see.

Joe Wright and Fox Searchlight Heading into The Ruins

Posted by John Squires on February 22, 2016

Joe Wright, director of films such as Atonement, Hanna, and Pan, has yet to lend his talents to the horror genre, though that may change thanks to a new project he’s developing with Fox Searchlight. It’s titled The Ruins, and no, it has nothing to do with the same-named film from 2008. Read on!

Per Deadline, Wright’s banner Shoebox Films and Fox Searchlight are working together on the India-set supernatural thriller, and at least for now, the plan is that Wright may potentially direct. The script is being penned by Jon Croker (The Woman in Black 2: Angel of Death).

Shoebox principals Wright, Paul Webster and Guy Heeley are overseeing the project.

Expect more as we learn it.

joe wright

The post Joe Wright and Fox Searchlight Heading into The Ruins appeared first on Dread Central.

Focus Features Dives into The Ocean at the End of the Lane

Posted by Uncle Creepy on February 28, 2013

And the news just keeps on rolling in. Next up for you cats who sit there and giggle as a new story appears on the site every friggin' five minutes is word of a new adaptation rolling in for the latest tale from Neil Gaiman, The Ocean at the End of the Lane.

Deadline is reporting that Focus Features and Playtone partners Tom Hanks and Gary Goetzman are closing a deal to acquire Gaiman's novel. Joe Wright is being attached to direct, and his Shoebox Films partner Paul Webster is coming aboard to produce with Hanks and Goetzman. The film will be a co-production between Playtone and Shoebox.

The Ocean at the End of the Lane will be published in June by William Morrow, and it’s about memory and magic and survival, about the power of stories and the darkness inside each of us. The narrator describes a tale that begins when he was seven and a lodger stole the family’s car and committed suicide in it, stirring up ancient powers best left undisturbed. Creatures from beyond the world are on the loose, and it will take everything our narrator has just to stay alive: There is primal horror here and a menace unleashed — within his family and from the forces that have gathered to destroy it. His only defense is three women on a ramshackle farm at the end of the lane. The youngest of them claims that her duckpond is an ocean. The oldest can remember the Big Bang.

Stay tuned.

Focus Features Dives into The Ocean At The End Of The Lane

VISIT THE EVILSHOP @ AMAZON!
Got news? Click here to submit it!
Take a dive in the comments section below!

Focus Features Dives into The Ocean at the End of the Lane

Posted by Uncle Creepy on February 28, 2013

And the news just keeps on rolling in. Next up for you cats who sit there and giggle as a new story appears on the site every friggin' five minutes is word of a new adaptation rolling in for the latest tale from Neil Gaiman, The Ocean at the End of the Lane.

Deadline is reporting that Focus Features and Playtone partners Tom Hanks and Gary Goetzman are closing a deal to acquire Gaiman's novel. Joe Wright is being attached to direct, and his Shoebox Films partner Paul Webster is coming aboard to produce with Hanks and Goetzman. The film will be a co-production between Playtone and Shoebox.

The Ocean at the End of the Lane will be published in June by William Morrow, and it’s about memory and magic and survival, about the power of stories and the darkness inside each of us. The narrator describes a tale that begins when he was seven and a lodger stole the family’s car and committed suicide in it, stirring up ancient powers best left undisturbed. Creatures from beyond the world are on the loose, and it will take everything our narrator has just to stay alive: There is primal horror here and a menace unleashed — within his family and from the forces that have gathered to destroy it. His only defense is three women on a ramshackle farm at the end of the lane. The youngest of them claims that her duckpond is an ocean. The oldest can remember the Big Bang.

Stay tuned.

Focus Features Dives into The Ocean At The End Of The Lane

VISIT THE EVILSHOP @ AMAZON!
Got news? Click here to submit it!
Take a dive in the comments section below!