Quick pick: ‘To Catch a Thief’ on Netflix

Grace Kelly and Cary Grant, directed by Alfred Hitchcock

To Catch a Thief (1955), Alfred Hitchcock’s frothiest entertainment, stars Cary Grant as a reformed jewel thief on the French Riviera who immediately comes under suspicion when a cat burglar goes to work on the rich and famous staying in the local luxury hotels. Heiress Grace Kelly decides to play detective the best way she knows how: by romancing the charming rogue. Hitch applies his touch in a few key scenes (fireworks never felt so erotic) but otherwise favors the lavish sets, classy locations, and unbearably beautiful stars to any pretense of suspense. It’s all about the sparkle of glamour and the romantic smolder of seductive stars playing cagey characters who play at romance with all of their charm. Jessie Royce Landis co-stars as the flighty Kelly’s down-to-earth mother and steals one scene simply by stubbing out a cigarette in a fried egg on expensive china: American pragmatism amidst the posh pretentions of European elegance.

Queue it up!

Also on disc and SVOD through Amazon Video and other services. Availability may vary by service.
To Catch A Thief [DVD]
To Catch A Thief [Blu-ray]

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About Sean Axmaker

Sean Axmaker is a contributing writer for Turner Classic Movies Online, The Seattle Weekly, Keyframe, and Cinephiled, and the editor of Parallax View (www.parallax-view.org). He was a film critic for the Seattle Post-Intelligencer for nine years and a longtime home video columnist for IMDb and MSN Movies, and his work has appeared in Indiewire, Today.com, The Stranger, Senses of Cinema, Asian Cult Cinema, Filmfax, Psychotronic Video, and "The Scarecrow Video Guide." You can find links to all of this and more on his shamelessly self-promoting blog at http://www.seanax.com/

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