Saturday, March 15, 2008

Alfred Hitchcock - Night of the Owl

A man blackmails a couple by threatening to tell their adopted daughter about her parents. Aired: 10/04/1962

Direct link:

8 complaints from ingrates:

Anonymous,  March 16, 2008 at 1:24 AM  

Jesus, Mary and Joseph. That was not what I was planning on doing this evening, but...

I have so many thoughts and responses to that I don't even know where to begin. My head is spinning a little.

Ungrateful Little Bastard March 16, 2008 at 9:30 AM  

That was EXACTLY my response. When I started watching it and saw how long it was, I thought I'd bookmark it for later, but I couldn't stop.

Anonymous,  March 16, 2008 at 12:17 PM  

OK, now it's the next morning. I woke up thinking about it. Of course the mindblowing thing is that a parent would go to such lengths to protect an adoptee from the Truth. Of course, I also thought, thank god they told her she was adopted PERIOD. The truth they withheld from her WAS a difficult one, and if this were to happen now, when should they reveal this? They wouldn't tell a six year old the details. And if she was having "emotional difficulties" - when WOULD they tell her?

So, on one level I felt for them. But oh, the scandal, the scandal.

I have to say I was heartened by the ending. (SPOILER ALERT FOR ANYONE WHO HASN'T SEEN IT)
I was blown away by what she said. She did NOT go insane although it seemed like she might. She took the truth in, and said, "I feel sad for them." Wow, that blew me away. In fact that line is still echoing in my head.

The mother was such a passive Nothing, and seemed that she had almost No relationship with the daughter ("You're the only one who can get through to her when she's like this") but the father figure really moved me.

And wasn't one of the policemen the Scarecrow from Wizard of Oz?!

I would love to show this clip at an Adoptee Film Festival sometime.

Ungrateful Little Bastard March 16, 2008 at 4:00 PM  


OK now that's out of the way. I was afraid as I was watching this that somehow the daughter would wind up killing the blackmailer, because, you know, adoptees are so disturbed, right? So I was happy that didn't happen.

I was also BLOWN AWAY by the line where she said to her dad that she had never felt special about being adopted.

And mom, sheesh, what was up with her. I'm pretty offended that she had to apologize to her little sister after she was the one who put her test tubes in the fridge. Sheesh. No wonder the poor thing is going around apologizing all the time.

But yeah, I REALLY liked the dad character in this.

Anonymous,  March 17, 2008 at 12:48 PM  

Well yes -- "never felt special" about being adopted - until he TOLD THE TRUTH, and THEN she felt loved and special. That rang so true, and just blew me away too.

Don Fromtennis December 9, 2009 at 4:07 PM  

The only reason I found this site is because I wanted to better understand the ending of this "play" as Alfred would call it.

At the end, why do we see through the curtain Ann looking down? We can't see the mother and Brian Keith stops (frowning) at the door? I thought maybe Ann killed mom. Maybe I'm extrapolating too much.

Still it was good to read what's been posted through the eyes of those with empathy for the adopted.

Ungrateful Little Bastard December 11, 2009 at 12:57 AM  

Don it's been so long since I've seen this, I'm going to have to go back and re-watch it this weekend. Your comment made me curious about the questions you asked.

Unknown September 25, 2010 at 7:03 PM  

@She definitely killed the mom, or something terrible happened at least. I actually know the woman who played Ann (that's why I looked this up and watched it), so I am going to ask her what the ending was "supposed" to mean. She shakes her head at the dad too, after she looks up from whatever is on the ground. It's definitely a questionable ending. And isn't there some sort of ladder outside the window? That was weird too...I couldn't figure out what it all meant. I also wasn't sure if the dad actually was frowning, because he kind of looked that way the whole movie...

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