BIG OL' SPOILERS, BEWARE!
Strangers on a Train was the second Hitchcock movie I saw on the big screen, and I thinked I liked it better than Shadow of a Doubt (sorry if you like that one!). It was a lot more suspenseful in my opinion, and was super exciting.
There are some things I love about this movie, so while I sing "These are a few of my Favorite Things" from The Sound of Music, let's roll.
1. Nice little suprises in the cast.
Wasn't so shocked to see Hitch because he's obvs in every movie of his. But seeing Marion Lorne aka Aunt Clara from Bewitched was a nice little present. I know her as a bumbling, aging witch who is losing her powers and collects doorknobs so it was a bit weird to see her as the mother of a psychopath, but I enjoyed seeing her!
Then I saw Pat Hitchcock! I was like seriously, where is this party and why am I not invited? I heard her sort of lispy voice and I KNEW it was from somewhere. I figured it out once I heard in my head, "Teddy called, me, and mother called to see if Teddy called..." from Psycho. It was a pleasant suprise to see her too.
2. FARLEY GRANGER.
Seriously, why haven't I ever heard of this guy until NOW? I was dying the whole movie. He is so handsome, with an amazing voice and totally drool-worthy. Omg, dream dude. He's like a Ken doll! I had post some caps of his angelic face. *swoons*
Wow. That was some serious fangirling.
3. Noir-like shots.
Ok, so I can't say I came up with this myself, since I honestly know NOTHING about noir. I need to be enlightened. Anyhow, I read somewhere that the scene where Bruno (Robert Walker) informs Guy (Granger) that he has just killed Miriam, they are behind a gate. The lights from the street cast shadows through the bars, making it look like they are in a prison cell. This is probably not a coincidence, showing that Bruno killed Miriam; now he will go to jail. It could also probably symbolize Guy feeling alone at that moment, being in a singular cell. Also, the shot where you can see Bruno strangling Miriam in the reflection of her cat eye glasses is pretty scary and ironic, as it would be played out with Pat Hitchcock later in the movie.
4. The "double crossing" themes.
The plot of the movie deals with a double crossing murder plot. Bruno does Guy's murder, and vice versa. THIS is why Hitch is a freaking genius. I didn't catch it until looking through the screencap gallery, but there were a boatload of 'double' themes. In the beginning, Bruno walks towards the left and Guy walks towards the left. They would have to cross each other at some point if they kept walking. On the night of her death, Miriam has two dates. Also at the beginning, the camera seems as if it's stuck on the tip of the train as you see two tracks crossing each other. Oh Hitchy, you're so smart!
Caps from Hitchcock Wiki, complied in photoshop by me.