Windows play a major part in the plots of many films made over the years. Whether it is someone asking to get in, someone smashing the glass or someone just standing there looking out, what would these movies have been like without windows?
Alfred Hitchcock's Rear Window may be the only pane of glass to have its own movie named after it. In case you have never seen it, this 1954 classic has James Stewart's character recovering from a broken leg and staring out of his window all day long. It all seems like relatively harmless voyeurism until he appears to spot a murder being committed. The story has been parodied and covered a number of times, including by Saturday Night Live, The Simpsons, The Detectives and The Flintstones. This film proves that if you get some lovely wooden sash windows fitted then it is safest to sit and look at them rather than look at dodgy goings on outside.
Alfred Hitchcock certainly seems to have liked featuring windows in important scenes in his movies, as Psycho is another of his classics which features one. This time, one of the most famous scenes in cinema history is the haunting image of Bates Motel with the mysterious shadowy figure of Norman's mother in the window. It is only a fleeting glance but it is an image that has become one of the iconic symbols of films that play on our fears and terrify us more with what we can't see that with what we can.
The scene where Neo and Trinity rescue Morpheus is one of the most dramatic and intense parts of the whole Matrix movie series. The action takes places high up in a skyscraper where rebel leader Morpheus is held captive. His rescuers turn up in a helicopter and a hail of bullets from both sides blow out the windows of the room in a few seconds time. Morpheus then jumps out of the shattered window to meet Neo in mid-air, completing one of the most outrageous rescue scenes ever filmed. You certainly won't want anyone smashing up your fine new wood casement windows like these freedom fighters did.
Speaking of terrifying windows scenes, few come close to the one in Salem's Lot in which the mist outside disappears and Danny begs with Mark to open the window. It seems safe to suggest that a lot of people were frightened to look at their window for a long time after seeing that scene. Even after all those years, it remains a powerful scene.
The Life of Brian This epic Monty Python is comedy filled with memorable quotes and classic scenes. Few if any are as fondly recalled at the window scene, though. This is where Brian's mother comes to the window and says that, “He’s not the Messiah. He's a very naughty boy”. She then pushes Brian out to address the masses below with “one or two things” he has to say.