The Woman in the Window Can’t Be Saved

Amy Adams as Anna Fox in The Woman in the Window.

The Woman in the Window is finally launching on Netflix over a year and a half after it was supposed to open in theaters.

When it comes to movies about windows, Rear Window is the gold standard. This isn’t about to change anytime soon. When it comes to the film’s release delays, people will likely think about Tulip Fever. Just me? Okay. Both The Woman in the Window and Tulip Fever have books for their source material. They can also count problematic people among their producers. The latter is most unfortunate–Scott Rudin is among the film’s producers. But anyway, with all the delays, you begin to start thinking whether the movie actually exists. Where Tulip Fever did not screen in advance for review, this one did. In all honesty, Netflix would have been better off hiding it from the press. The film is just so bad.

It’s understandable why they decide to feature footage from Alfred Hitchock films especially Rear Window. Anna Fox (Amy Adams) is agoraphobic and while Jimmy Stewart’s L. B. “Jeff” Jefferies doesn’t leave his apartment, Anna has her own reasons. Anna befriends a neighbor living across the street but when she disappears, Anna’s life changes for better or worse. This is the gist of the film. Again, it’s so laughable. I’d say they were going for a B movie but it’s so much worse than that.

Joe Wright may have directed Gary Oldman to an Oscar with 2017’s Darkest Hour but once more, Oscar will not come calling for Amy Adams. And that’s a damn shame because the actress is so much better than the material. Tracy Letts may be a fine writer but this film is laughable at best. That’s not to disrespect him but the problem with the film almost certainly lies with the source material. The source material just cannot be saved in this instance. Not even by the cast and this is a film that features both two people who have held or currently hold the Captain America mantle! The very minute I saw Wyatt Russell show up on screen, my mind started racing to John Walker.

I honestly feel bad for everyone involved. It’s not like they intentionally set out to make a bad movie. Nobody walks onto set thinking that today will be the day they deliver their Razzie-winning performance. If anybody went into a film with that mindset, they would be fired and recast on the spot! But I digress.

If you don’t blink, you’ll notice footage from both Rear Window and Spellbound. Both films are directed by the Master of Suspense, Alfred Hitchcock. Dark Passage, the Delmer Daves-directed film starring Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall, is also featured. Finally, there’s footage from the Otto Preminger-directed Laura.

The Woman in the Window should have been permanently shelved.

DIRECTOR: Joe Wright
CAST: Amy Adams, Gary Oldman, Anthony Mackie, Fred Hechinger, Wyatt Russell, Brian Tyree Henry, Jennifer Jason Leigh, and Julianne Moore

Netflix launches The Woman in the Window on May 14, 2021.

Danielle Solzman

Danielle Solzman is native of Louisville, KY, and holds a BA in Public Relations from Northern Kentucky University and a MA in Media Communications from Webster University. She roots for her beloved Kentucky Wildcats, St. Louis Cardinals, Indianapolis Colts, and Boston Celtics. Living less than a mile away from Wrigley Field in Chicago, she is an active reader (sports/entertainment/history/biographies/select fiction) and involved with the Chicago improv scene. She also sees many movies and reviews them. She has previously written for Redbird Rants, Wildcat Blue Nation, and Hidden Remote/Flicksided. From April 2016 through May 2017, her film reviews can be found on Creators.