This video is making waves at the moment. And it’s beautiful, sure; aesthetically, it reiterates that Rear Window is a stunning visual work of art. But I cannot reconcile it with the film itself, I cannot accept it as another part of Hitchcock’s canon, or as another way of seeing through Jimmy Stewart’s window. It’s a wonderful little microcosmic look at a microcosmic look at an event, but I feel that it usurps the point of the original Rear Window.
Hitchcock’s film has one frame, very purposefully sees things only from one point of view and only in a natural temporal framework, with the assistance of memory (of course, as is natural). This clipped version changes the whole hermeneutic surrounding Hitchcock’s point of view, and the split screen shows us too much happening all at once. The beauty of Rear Window is that very little happens simultaneous to a great many things happening. With time sped up, the spectator is privy to too much. Drawing our attention to certain happenings not through our natural gaze (or Jimmy Stewart’s) but by blurring out certain elements of the screen and hyper situating others, this time-lapse disturbs the saturation of the original environment. The space is too diverse in this version. There is no joy or accomplishment because we are moved around too much. It just doesn’t work.