Essay on Alfred Hitchcock's Rear Window: Sound

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Pages: 6

Sound is everywhere. It is part of our everyday lives and our interactions and definitely a part of film. Sound, especially dialogue, makes it easier to understand what is happening. But it also provides texture and emotion to each scene. Though most moviegoers might think of film as an essentially visual experience, we cannot underestimate the importance of sound and music in film. Most movies would not be interesting at all if you were to take away the sound and music. Sound enables the director to create certain moods and emotions, express continuity throughout the film, tell a story, and even enhance meanings. Not only can sound be an aural sense but a visual sense as well and director Alfred Hitchcock knew this and applied it in …show more content…
Most of Hitchcock's carefully placed sounds had a feeling of unity and relation. For instance, when Jeff struggles to itch his cast-bound leg, an opera singer can be heard in the background reaching a high pitched note creating a sense of relief for Jeff. Author Elisabeth Weiss states while discussing music, dialogue, and sound effects, that "Hitchcock did not conceive them as separate entities. One distinctive element of his aural style is a continuity of his use of language, music, and sound effects that reflects his ability to conceive of their combined impact before he actually hears them together"(Weiss 16-17). Not only did Hitchcock use sounds to create a sense of what was happening, he also used music. The most popular song that played throughout the entire movie, was the composer's romantic song, "Lisa." When Lisa would converse with Jeff about their relationship, this song could be heard playing in the background representing how Lisa was feeling. As the composer struggles to put the pieces of the song together, Jeff and Lisa struggle to work things out between each other. The song "Lisa" could also be heard playing when the Thorwalds were fighting, and when Miss Lonelyhearts was contemplating suicide, both scenes in which the characters were struggling in some way. Other sad and romantic songs are heard when Miss Lonelyhearts entertains an imaginary guest in her apartment and her struggle with