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Woman In The Window [DVD]

Edward G. Robinson , Joan Bennett , Fritz Lang    Parental Guidance   DVD
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
Price: £31.00
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Frequently Bought Together

Woman In The Window [DVD] + Scarlet Street [DVD] + The Spiral Staircase [DVD] [1945]
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Product details

  • Actors: Edward G. Robinson, Joan Bennett, Raymond Massey, Dan Duryea, Robert Blake
  • Directors: Fritz Lang
  • Producers: Nunnally Johnson
  • Format: PAL
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 4:3 - 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: PG
  • Studio: Studiocanal
  • DVD Release Date: 12 Jan 2009
  • Run Time: 95 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 58,670 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)


Product Description

Edward G. Robinson plays a college professor who, while his family are on holiday, falls for the model of a painting on exhibition in a shop window next to his club. When he is invited by the model to her apartment to view some other sketches, a stranger breaks in and accuses her of infidelity. He then attacks Robinson who stabs the assailant in self defence, killing him. Rather than call the police he conspires with the girl to dispose of the body in the nearby woods.

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
The Woman in the Window has an ending almost guaranteed to infuriate you the first time you see the movie, and, the second time, to leave you with an immensely satisfied smile.

"The man who kills in self defense, for instance, must not be judged by the same standards applied to a man who kills for gain." So says middle-aged and happily married Richard Wanley (Edward G. Robinson), professor of criminal psychology, to his class at Gotham College. Wanley is about to put his dictum to the test. When his wife and their two young children leave for a brief vacation, he dines at his club with two old friends, one a doctor and the other, Frank Lalor (Raymond Massey), the district attorney. Wanley bemoans his increasingly middle-aged life. "I hate this solidity," he says with a rueful smile, "this stodginess I'm beginning to feel. To me, it's the end of the brightness of life, the end of spirit and adventure." His two friends leave and he settles in, before returning to his empty home, with one last brandy and The Song of Songs. When he leaves the club late in the evening he stops, as he often has, and gazes at the portrait in the window of the gallery next door. The woman is lovely...beautiful, with a challenge in her eyes and a gaze that looks right at you. When a voice asks him for a light for her cigarette, the professor turns and is stunned to see that the voice belongs to the woman who posed for the portrait. Alice Reed (Joan Bennett) sometimes stops by the gallery to see the reaction of men when they look at her portrait. The two somehow wind up at a quiet bar, talk and then the professor escorts her to her apartment in a taxi. She invites him up and shows him sketches the artist made of her before painting her portrait.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Thoughtful film noir with unusual aspects 13 May 2009
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
This highly recommended film noir from 1944 by Fritz Lang is a persuasive study of a respectable, professional man (Edward G Robinson) caught up in an unforeseen situation - the involuntary killing of an assailant - that rapidly assumes the qualities of a nightmare which, as nightmares are apt to do, spirals out of control.

From the moment of the initial chance spotting of a portrait of a young woman (Joan Bennett) in the window of a gallery (shades of another film noir, Laura, also from 1944), Lang shows two people under great stress and called upon to take increasingly frantic action to try to ward off disclosure and disaster. I felt that there was a slight loss of momentum in the middle section as Robinson is involved in a prolonged, didactic discussion with a couple of friends, but otherwise the atmosphere of tension is maintained unerringly, and in the latter stages Dan Duryea lends his considerable presence as a cold-hearted villain. He stands at one end of the scale of respectabilty, a man of violence and malevolence, whose other end is occupied by Robinson, a man trying to reason his way out of a chaotic situation. The enigmatic Joan Bennett, whose background is unclear, spans the two worlds.

Without disclosing the details, the film has a famous ending which turns all that has gone before on its head. Every viewer will make up his mind about its merits, but those who dislike it will find that the film is not thereby ruined.

Robinson and Bennett make a great couple, and worked together on several films. He is especially good, playing here against type, and it's ironic that his versatility in playing a good man is one of the unusual aspects of the normally hard-boiled film noir genre.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of Lang's best Hollywood outings 19 Oct 2009
Fritz Lang, with his early films such as Metropolis and M has been established as one of the finest German directors of his generation. But, just as many of his contemporaries, his true genius and craft shines through in his Hollywood films. Because of the restrictions of Hollywood at the times and the conventions that had to be followed to make a successful film, directors such as Fritz Lang, Max Ophüls and Douglas Sirk had to find new and innovative ways to convey meaning.

This is quite apparent in Woman in the Window, where the subtle and elegant cinematography tell a whole story almost on its own. Feeling almost surreal at times, touching the points between dreamscape and realism, the clever framing and composition of Lang's images show itself as one of the finest of the Hollywood era. Personally, I sometimes sat completely absorbed by the beautiful and intricate cinematography which the film builds itself around.

The film also works very well with tension, often leaving the viewer at the edge of their seats, up till the very end. The way the narrative incorporates the different characters is excellent, giving us just enough information, but also withholding some crucial bits which leave us guessing what's going to happen next. This is helped by the good pairing of Edward G. Robinson and Joan Bennett.

I have found Fritz Lang's Hollywood films very illuminating, and while his early German efforts are very good in themselves, the true wealth and value that he presents comes from his exquisite American films, which shows true mastery of form and subtlety.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Through a glass darkly
A surprizingly naïve, middle-aged, criminology professor (Edward G. Robinson) is given a nasty fright when allowing his normally suppressed amorous inclinations get the better of... Read more
Published 4 months ago by still searching
5.0 out of 5 stars Superior Lang Noir
This 1944 film noir directed by Fritz Lang, with a razor sharp script by Nunnally Johnson, is a dark, claustrophobic study (very Hitchcock-like at times) of an (essentially)... Read more
Published 7 months ago by Keith M
4.0 out of 5 stars Another present
I haven't seen this film myself but I heard from someone who has this and they said good film to have
Published 9 months ago by Meta
5.0 out of 5 stars Framing Desire
This is a review of the region 1 version of MGM's own release of Fritz Lang's superb 1944 film noir, The Woman in the Window. Read more
Published 14 months ago by Film Buff
5.0 out of 5 stars Film Noir
This is one of my favourite classic films of the era of Hollywood Greats and is a brilliant 'film noir' which I've wanted a copy of for

Published 16 months ago by Anne-Marie Kerley
3.0 out of 5 stars The Woman in the Window
Good quality, but no subtitle (I need it for my low hearing). I have no more to say at the moment. I understood You will need more information. I am sorry!
Published 19 months ago by Esko Ruuskanen
5.0 out of 5 stars Mirrors, Clocks, Windows, Food and One Too Many Cognacs
Gorgeous Joan Bennett (they don't make them like that any more)is the woman of a particularly toad-like Edward G. Read more
Published 19 months ago by Mario
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb! A cinema with class.
With the 7.7/10 in IMDB this film is underrated. The best thing about this film is that it altogether is exceptionally convincing, although the situation, where everything got... Read more
Published 19 months ago by Meri
5.0 out of 5 stars Superbly entertaining film noir
A masterpiece by Fritz Lang, from the year 1944. It's films like this which make one hanker for the good old days of Hollywood, the 1930s, 40s and 50s..... Read more
Published on 25 April 2012 by Ténès
5.0 out of 5 stars The Woman in the Window
This is an excellent comedy thriller and I enjoyed it for its atmospheric themes and the whole production was acted very well indeed. The ending,however, is a little weak. Read more
Published on 21 April 2012 by Christine Harris
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