71 user 27 critic

The Window (1949)

Approved | | Drama, Film-Noir, Thriller | May 1949 (USA)
To avoid the heat of a sweltering summer night a 9-year-old Manhattan boy decides to sleep on the fire escape and witnesses a murder, but no one will believe him.


Ted Tetzlaff


Mel Dinelli (screenplay), Cornell Woolrich (based on a story by: "The Boy Cried Murder")
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »




Complete credited cast:
Barbara Hale ... Mary Woodry
Arthur Kennedy ... Ed Woodry
Paul Stewart ... Joe Kellerson
Ruth Roman ... Jean Kellerson
Bobby Driscoll ... Tommy


At the age of 9, Tommy Woodry has a reputation for telling tall tales -- the latest one being that his family is moving from Manhattan to a ranch out west. When the landlord interrupts the Woodrys at dinner to show their about-to-be-vacated apartment, the Woodrys tell Tommy enough is enough. Then that hot summer night Tommy decides to sleep on the fire escape -- outside the Kellerson's apartment, since it is a story higher and gets more breeze. Tommy sees the Kellersons kill a man. Tommy's parents and the police won't believe his story. But the Kellersons want to silence him. Written by Dale O'Connor <daleoc@interaccess.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Thrills and Chills! See more »


Approved | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


RKO borrowed Bobby Driscoll from Disney to play the lead role. See more »


While running down the top flight of stairs to play with the neighbor boys at 04:15, Tommy's breath is visible, and is visible again while he is running to the police station at 25:49 just after he runs past the canopy of 136th. This is consistent with being shot in the late Fall, but is not consistent with being set in the 94 degree heat of summer (04:43). See more »


Tommy: Pop? If you see a thing with your own eyes, it can't be a dream, can it?
Ed Woodry: You don't want me ever to be ashamed of you, do you?
Tommy: No, Pop.
Ed Woodry: Well, don't you see that might happen if you keep this up? People gonna say that Ed Woodry's son doesn't know the difference between what's real and what isn't. Why, they might even say that you're a... a liar.
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Crazy Credits

The role of "Tommy" played by BOBBY DRISCOLL by special arrangement with WALT DISNEY See more »


Version of Cloak & Dagger (1984) See more »

User Reviews

An Off Kilter Thriller
7 October 2012 | by LeonLouisRicciSee all my reviews

The best thing about this little film is the claustrophobic NYC tenement landscape that is realistic and an unfiltered urban underworld of dilapidated brick and wood with rooftops and fire escapes, collapsing beams and decay. The next best thing is the child star and the supporting cast delivering somber characterizations with a modicum of hope (the struggling parents) and desperate despair (the neighbors upstairs).

A movie that puts you in a noir environment of shadows and heat. Oppressive and ominous the tone is that of a closeted existence and an overwhelming sense of suspense. It is quite a contrast to the upbeat suburban surroundings that would dominate the affluent air of the 1950's materialism.

One doubts that you could have set this in a barbecuing back yard with cars in the driveway and kitchens full of appliances and maintained the fear and frustration that operates in this bleak B-Movie. It was Film Noir that dared dramatize the "other side" of post war America and this is one of the last great ones to have the courage to show the flip side of the dream, that for some people was still a nightmare. It is not surprising that the bad dream solution was utilized to explain what the little boy really witnessed.

An off kilter thriller that is taut, tantalizing, and terrifying.

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Frequently Asked Questions

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Release Date:

May 1949 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Boy Cried Murder See more »


Box Office


$210,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

RKO Radio Pictures See more »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

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