Today in Movie History: August 1

It’s a double dose of Alfred Hitchcock today, starting with Rear Window: in which a bored photojournalist (Jimmy Stewart) laid up with a broken leg starts snooping on his neighbors and starts to suspect one of them of murder. The luminous Grace Kelley co-stars as his Gal Friday, and the results stand on the short list of the greatest movies of all time. Rear Window opened today in 1954.

It’s a good day for Hitch because it also saw The 39 Steps hit theaters for the first time. This one follows one of the master’s standard scenarios — the innocent man wrongly accused —  into a marvelous chase/romance, scoring one of his biggest early successes and setting the stage for the brilliant work to follow. It opened today in 1935.


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