Suspicion - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Suspicion Reviews

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½ July 20, 2017
Forgive Hitchcock for the M. Night Shyamalan ending he never intended for, as it threw the development out the window and packed everything nice and neat for a soft, conservative Hollywood ending that made no sense at all. I have to remind myself to enjoy the moments of this film, because when I anticipate the dreadful ending, it ruins everything. Still, inside the running reels, there's much to enjoy that it's not worth letting the outcome spoil it all. By now we know enough about the legitimate ending to appreciate in our imaginations a perfect alternate universe this film exists in.

Johnnie Aysgarth is a charming scoundrel, liar, thief, and most likely a murderer. Furthermore he betrays his wife's trust as often as possible, and in my imagination probably gets it on with that cute maid Ethel when Lina is out. But the studio makes it seem as though Lina just forgives him all for this, that as long as she finds out he's not actually trying to kill her (which nothing in that final cliffside drive sequence convinces me of), he's ok. Nevermind his repeated attempts to get money from her and her family, his refusal to get a job, his extravagant spending, his constant lies to her about where he is and what he's doing (gambling), and the sinister attitude he takes when she becomes suspicious. That it should end with the two of them quickly tying things up and living happily ever after make me puke.

There's something tantalizing about each time we catch Johnnie lying. Where is this film going? Everything seems gentle and innocent enough at first, he is clearly a man of status, so what's his deal? Why is he like this? And how is it he's poor. All along the film unfolds a manchild who is simply stuck in the comfort of his elitist privilege, unwilling to change at the expense of his pride. To be a working man when you can be a con, a cheat - why? This film hit me close to home in an uncomfortable way. I had to remind myself that at least going to auditions was work in itself, and that I was making the effort as one would go to job interviews. But I do feel this living in my little castle at home, often monastically, for days and weeks at a time not going to one "interview." And it is likely for similar reasons that has me empathizing, however weakly, with Johnnie.

Joan Fontaine is an absolute delight to be with, both with her elegant charm and beautifully beatific face, sometimes, other times longing in despair, hoping for truth. Cary Grant is Cary Grant, always sharp and on point. It's simple the way they play off each other: we like them, they're sexy, cute, have great chemistry, and we wouldn't mind seeing them fuck. Add to that Nigel Bruce as the delightful Beaky with his English jollity and fine whiskers, and this all seems like a happy little cozy world.

The film is seemingly lighthearted compared to other Hitchcock fare like Saboteur, but this would go on to become a Hitchcock trait in other thrillers like To Catch a Thief and North by Northwest; namely, the Cary Grant ones, which Hitch casts perfectly to compliment this contrasting style he's going for. The whimsicality always meets it's ominous fate as the real plot unfolds, Hitch penetrating the comfortable exterior of 'pleasant' Hollywood movies. There is nothing comfortable at the dinner table murder talk as the doctor cuts into the body of the chicken while relatedly talking about human autopsy - Hitchcock's genius associative montage, often repeated, in David Lynch's case most disgustingly in Eraserhead's bleeding chicken scene.

I love the quickness at which the film moves; there's a little self contained world this movie sets up, so there isn't time for anything else. The film opens in the train, in darkness we hear Johnnie swipe past Lina's leg in the train car - he's targeting her before we see anything. Hitchcock and trains go together like bread and butter, it's great to be here - Lady Vanishes, Strangers on a Train, North by Northwest to name a few. It is then established that they like each other, he seeks her out, she thinks of him, and after some hesitation on his part, they're together, much to the dislike of her military general father.

As always, we get to see intelligently designed cinematography, the staple of any Hitchcock experience, and what many allude to as being ahead of his time. Hitchcock was always trying to do more with a shot, not just leaving it to his cinematographer to light a clean image. Of course I am writing this in 2017 when spoofs have entered my brain, such as Mel Brooks' famous "caught in a web" scene with Dick Van Patten, deliberately stealing the shot, and it's meaning, from Suspicion. So it's hard not to laugh when I see Joan Fontaine symbolically caught in Johnnie's web of lies, standing isolated in her home with that constant shadow cast from above onto the room below.
½ July 14, 2017
Hitchcock's Suspicion is littered with plot cliches and the ending is enormously unfulfilling, but at its forefront is merciless tension, solid direction, and stupendous intrigue.
December 21, 2016
A must-see Hitchcock - Grant & Fontaine film. Makes you question a glass of milk before bed. On Blu-Ray.
½ December 20, 2016
A well crafted mystery from Alfred Hitchcock with superb acting from Cary Grant. However, the ending was a little confusing and didn't completely satisfy me. (First and only viewing - 12/13/2010)
December 1, 2016
This movie is a great disappointment. Even if Hitchcock had kept the ending of the story on which it was based, it would be mediocre at best. The sudden shift at the end to appease the censors, etc., is pitiful, completely without merit. The acting is weak. When Grant "barks" at Fontaine when she says she's going home to visit her mother, it is out of the blue, as Fontaine notes later when she says he'd never acted that way before. The baloney about, oh, gee, Grant is really an okay guy and Fontaine just got it wrong is idiotic. It was a waste of time to watch this very non-Hitchcock movie and poorly acted tripe by well-known Hollywood stars. Today it would be a straight-to-video bit of nonsense.
November 28, 2016
A template for every subsequent suspense thriller. The old maestro pull all the strings in this psychological drama to hold us, the audience glued in place. Shame about the (spoiler) cop-out ending which undermines much of the wonderful work preceding. Without that this would surely have gone down as a major work
September 28, 2016
Alfred Hitchcock directs this superb thriller in which Joan Fontaine won a well-deserved Oscar for her absolutely terrific performance in her role as a timid heiress who becomes convinced her husband is trying to kill her.

The only actor to win an Oscar for a Hitchcock movie, Fontaine suits the part so well and she gets more and more concerned about the safety of her life and she does everything she can to stay away from murder.

Her husband is played by Cary Grant and he gives a good performance in the first of his many films working with the great director. There is also good support from Sir Cedric Hardwicke.

Hitchcock's direction is excellent and the atmosphere is very tense in places, and the dramatic climax will leave you talking about this movie for a very long time.

This is one excellent film-noir.
July 27, 2016
This is an excellent thriller from Alfred Hitchcock that is the first time he worked with Cary Grant. The pairing is perfect as Grant nails the role and brings some humour to it as well. Joan Fontaine is also excellent, winning an Academy Award for her role. There are some great tense scenes that Hitch truly knows how to work. A must watch for Hitchcock fans!
July 25, 2016
A rich wallflower (Joan Fontaine) falls in love with a charming playboy (Cary Grant). Despite his reputation, she marries him. Before long she becomes suspicious of his motives for marrying her and soon realizes her life may be in danger. Enjoyable Hitchcock thriller with notorious studio-imposed ending that is not in sync with the rest of the film. Even with a more fitting ending, however, I don't think this would be considered one of the great director's best. It's a good one, for sure. Grant, Fontaine, and the supporting players are all excellent. Hitch's direction is terrific, as well. But the story just isn't all that special and the whole thing is predictable, at least until the out-of-left-field ending that most fans don't even like.
½ April 12, 2016
Cary's annoying goofiness holds the movie in a turf that's neither comedy nor mystery. The film is saved by the what's-the-truth plot
Super Reviewer
½ March 28, 2016
The romance between the two characters is developed in a clumsy way in the beginning, but soon the film grows to become a nice, taut thriller directed with a firm grip by Hitchcock, who builds a gripping suspense that only disappoints in the end with a silly, frustrating payoff.
½ February 20, 2016
After the global scale of Foreign Correspondent Hitchcock zooms his focus in to the small and subtle tensions between a husband and wife. One of his most insidious and slowest burners and, with the exception of one or two sexist cases of weak-knee syndrome, his most retrained to date (reining some of the excesses of Rebecca, if never quite reaching its heights). The pairing of Cary Grant and Joan Fontaine is note perfect, the latter transformed from her last Hitchcock appearance into a much stronger character and the former surprises in playing against type; it's hard to imagine anyone else in their place. Best watched in black and white, the master's use of shadow is washed out in the colorized version.
January 23, 2016
Wtf did I just watch?? #1, I don't give a shit how hot Cary Grant is, I would not marry a man who nick names me "Monkey Face" and #2 the best part was the last 5 minutes but even then it leaves much to be desired. Skip this Hitchcock movie
½ January 10, 2016
Suspicion isn't one of Hitchcock's best films, but it surely is one of his better ones as the dialogue is superb, the acting is great with Joan Fontaine delivering a fantastic performance and the movie is filled with the director's trademark great atmosphere and memorable imagery. But it is, most importantly, incredibly funny and charming which surprised me and it is always well crafted, well directed, really well acted and immensely engaging.
½ December 10, 2015
Not Hitchcock's best, but a mesmerizing thriller all the same.
½ September 7, 2015
so uncomfortable all the way through, cary grant is amazing. i actually found the ending to be ambiguous (did he open the door and just fail to complete his mission since she was prepared for it? is he lying about paris still?) so i don't see the dull hollywood ending that others see. i imagine as they drive home, she's still wondering if he's dangerous or if she's delusional.
July 14, 2015
This movie about a charming scoundrel who seduces a wealthy heiress takes a while to get going, and has a bit of a thin plot, but moments of suspense and the good looking lead couple make it worth watching.
½ June 13, 2015
Oh dear me, time has not been kind to this Hitchcock movie. Joan Fontaine needs a punch in the face to bring her to her senses as the drippy, simpering lead, charmed into marrying the decidedly shady Cary Grant. There's an awful lot of swooning and staring into the middle distance as Fontaine gradually becomes convinced that her gambling husband is planning to do her in in order to get an insurance payout so he can pay off his debts. Grant's character is totally insufferable, made all the more so by the constant affirmations from his friends that he's such a great guy. I'm sorry but he's a total c@!t and Fontaine, all the worse for putting up with him. The film ends in a totally rushed and unsatisfactory manner, leaving a nasty taste in the mouth and a complete feeling of having been let down. It just does not work, either as a suspense or melodrama and to the modern viewer, confirms all the worst ideas of just how appallingly sexiest the era was.
April 27, 2015
Eerie and tense, Hitchcock's #suspicion is a masterpiece thriller. Featuring wonderful performances from the cast, any Hitchcock fan will be pleased.
April 21, 2015
Not one of Hitchcock's best works although it does feature an interesting semi departure for Grant. Ultimately I felt let down by a weak ending.
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