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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thief!
Alfred Hitchcock made two kinds of movies: bone-chilling thrillers that looked into the dark side of human nature, and witty adventure stories.

"To Catch A Thief" is a sterling example of the latter kind of movie -- a chic, sleek, golden-tinted caper, full of witty dialogue and solid acting from legendary actors. Despite the taut action scenes, Hitchcock makes...
Published on Feb. 22 2007 by E. A Solinas

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3.0 out of 5 stars So-so Hitchcock jewel caper
As a connoisseur of Hitchcock's work, To Catch a Thief was merely adequate. Lacking any real suspense, the movie was held together by the excellent cinematography offered by the picturesque French Rivera locale.
Cary Grant was at his suave and debonair best as John Robie, a retired cat burgular who is suspected when a rash of jewel thefts plagues the swanky Riviera...
Published on Feb. 6 2004 by Cory D. Slipman


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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thief!, Feb. 22 2007
By 
E. A Solinas "ea_solinas" (MD USA) - See all my reviews
(TOP 10 REVIEWER)    (HALL OF FAME)   
This review is from: To Catch a Thief (DVD)
Alfred Hitchcock made two kinds of movies: bone-chilling thrillers that looked into the dark side of human nature, and witty adventure stories.

"To Catch A Thief" is a sterling example of the latter kind of movie -- a chic, sleek, golden-tinted caper, full of witty dialogue and solid acting from legendary actors. Despite the taut action scenes, Hitchcock makes it feel almost like a cinematic vacation.

Paul Robie (Cary Grant) was "The Cat," the most notorious jewel thief in Europe, before he retired. But now impossible heists -- made in Robie's style -- are popping up all over Cannes, and he's the immediate suspect. Narrowly escaping the police, he enlists a friend to help him clear his name by capturing this new Cat.

To do that, he masquerades as an American tourist, and gets to know pretty oil heiress Frances Stevens (Grace Kelly) and her mother. But when the Stevens jewels are stolen, Frances brings the cops down on Robie -- and now he is more desperate than ever to find the Cat, because he suspects it's an old friend...

Hitchcock was in fine form with "To Catch a Thief," especially since he had two great actors in the mix. Granted this isn't one of his more insightful or suspenseful movies, but it captures a sense of sly wit and fun instead.

If "To Catch A Thief" has a problem, it's that astute viewers will be able to guess who the Cat is after about a half hour, maximum. But fortunately viewers can be distracted by Hitchcock's knack for razor-sharp dialogue ("What do you say?" "My only comment would be highly censorable") and double entendres (during an intimate lunch, Francie asks, "You want a leg or a breast?").

It's also gorgeous to behold -- he entire movie is bathed in the golden Riviera sun, with lots of swimming, fast car chases, elaborate costume balls, and ornate hotels. But Hitchcock winds it up with a genuinely tense rooftop chase, complete with wrestling and gunshots.

Grant is a bit grizzled (and VERY overtanned) here, but still dapper and charming enough for Robie, a thief with principles and a taste for the good life. Kelly is also quite good as an heiress who is less prim than she appears; John Williams and Jessie Royce Landis have fun supporting roles as a "veddy veddy English" insurance man and a shrewd rich woman.

"To Catch A Thief" is a warm, sumptuous piece of classic film, with great dialogue and even better acting. Fun, stylish little mystery
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Super film, un grand classique, Dec 24 2012
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This review is from: To Catch a Thief (Special Collector's Edition) (Bilingual) [Import] (DVD)
Il faut voir et revoir ce beau film de Hitchcock! Magniques Grant et Kelly dans le sud de la France.
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5.0 out of 5 stars It takes a thief to catch a thief, Nov. 23 2006
By 
bernie "xyzzy" (Arlington, Texas) - See all my reviews
(TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: To Catch a Thief (Bilingual) (DVD)
Years ago John Robie (Cary Grant) decided that it was better to live rich than poor. So he became a joule thief. He was pretty good at his trade. His ability and modus operandi of sneaking along roof tops gave him the title of "The Cat". However he a war came up and he was an iatrical art of the resistance. This and the promise to give up his thieving ways allowed him to go free and enjoy the proceeds from his ill-gotten ways.

Well it looks like "The Cat" has stuck again. Robie can only clear himself by finding the "Copy Cat." To help he enlists some old friends, an insurance investigator, and some new friends/or maybe victims.

So did he really do it and trying to blame it on someone else?

Why would anyone after all these years want to frame him?

This movie can become a favorite as even when you know the outcome you will watch it again for the action and interaction of the different characters. Then you will also look for clues that are now obvious but missed the first time.
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4.0 out of 5 stars With Class and Grace, July 16 2004
By 
T. Lobascio (New Jersey United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: To Catch a Thief (Bilingual) (DVD)
To Catch A Thief marks a departure for director Alfred Hitchcock. Here, he sheds the moniker as The Master Of Suspense, going more for romance and comedy--rather than any of his well known plot twists or thrills. The film may not be the best of his career, but thanks to a strong leading man and a radiant leading lady the movie still works.
John Robie, (Cary Grant) is a reformed cat burglar, out to prove himself innocent of a recent crime spree. As he tries to capture the thief who's terrifying the French Riviera, he attracts the attention of the lovely Frances Stevens (Grace Kelly), a wealthy and spoiled American traveling the Riviera with her widowed mother (Jessie Royce Landis). However, things do not begin on a romantic note. Robie is more interested in clearing his name than in pursuing the beautiful American, but the two will not go their separate ways so easily. When Mrs. Stevens has her jewels stolen, the snubbed Frances puts the police on Robie's trail. Now the dashing Robie will have to win the confidence and assistance of Frances if he is to ever set things right.
Grant and Kelly light up the screen together, with an entrancing chemistry that sparkles, especially in the impromptu ad-libbed dialogue of the picnic scene. A series of elaborate set pieces combined with the spectacularc Riviera scenery make the film an enduring piece of American cinema. Hitchcock lets his leads pick up for any of the film's lack of excitement, that traditionally peppers the director's films. I have always had a "crush" on the late Grace Kelly, and this film just helps to solidify those feelings.
The DVD contains three well produced making of featurettes. "Writing and Casting," "The Making of To Catch a Thief," and "Alfred Hitchcock and To Catch a Thief", will give you a well rounded look at the film. But things would have worked out even better if these were edited together as one larger whole. Long time Hitchcock collaborator, costumer Edith Head, is highlighted in a fourth featurette, that also tops off the disc's bonus material.
To Catch A Thief is recommended for any Hitchcock fan..
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3.0 out of 5 stars So-so Hitchcock jewel caper, Feb. 6 2004
By 
Cory D. Slipman (Rockville Centre, N.Y.) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: To Catch a Thief (Bilingual) (DVD)
As a connoisseur of Hitchcock's work, To Catch a Thief was merely adequate. Lacking any real suspense, the movie was held together by the excellent cinematography offered by the picturesque French Rivera locale.
Cary Grant was at his suave and debonair best as John Robie, a retired cat burgular who is suspected when a rash of jewel thefts plagues the swanky Riviera. Realizing, he must apprehend the actual thief, whose m.o. parallels his own, he plots a scheme.
Grace Kelly, whose acting ability does not rival her beauty, plays a perfectly typecasted role for her. As a spoiled, bored, rich socialite Frances Stevens, she and her wealthy but earthy mother, played exceptionally well by Jessie Royce Landis are vacationing. The elder Mrs. Stevens has a valuable collection of jewelery that Grant theorizes would make excellent bait.
Hitchcocks creates a predictable plot, with the usual love affair. There is however, little in the way of mystery or tension or even chemistry between Kelly and Grant to make this flick anything more than mediocre. Edith Head provides a high point with her fantastic wardrobes created for the costume ball scene.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The Shakespeare of Cinema Strikes Again, Jan. 15 2004
By 
Dorion Sagan (East Coast, USA and Toronto) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: To Catch a Thief (Bilingual) (DVD)
This is a great movie with wonderful performances by a handsome Cary Grant and a stunning Grace Kelly, who plays a witty young American (she's not playing!). That Kelly thinks of settling in Monaco in the film and later became the real Princess of Monaco makes one suspect that she wanted to make permanent the sort of life she acted in this brilliant psychological thriller. The theme of thievery is subtly parsed by hitchcock, who alludes to its erotic overtones and who, in general, is operating, like Shakespeare on a double level: you can enjoy it on the level of action and drama, and yet there is much more than meets the eye as jewels, money, possession, playing hard (and easy) to get, and the thrill of the chase are all mirrored in the register of romance. The cut to fireworks over the water outside the window as Grace wears fake diamonds but makes real love may have laid the way for the greatest cinematic cliche, but here it is far more than that: the shimmering water, shining eyes, crackling fireworks, and sparkling theme of beauty's temporary nature contrasted with desire's undying love come together perfectly. Like Shakespeare, Hitchcock's works seem infinitely rich and nuanced. A great, subtly deep romance from the master (watch for him on the bus early on) of film.
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5.0 out of 5 stars An old Hitchcock movie, Sept. 10 2003
By 
Joseph H Pierre "Joe Pierre" (Salem, OR USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: To Catch a Thief (VHS Tape)
This is another old Hitchcock film, typical of his expert touch, and like virtually all of his work features a cameo appearance of Hitchcock himself. (A scene on a bus, in which he appears nonchalantly seated alongside Cary Grant as just another passenger for a second or two.)

In this wonderful film, Cary Grant plays a former jewel thief, John Robie, an American living in France who helps the French resistance during WWII, and subsequently (after the war) is given a parole for his former criminal acts because of his wartime heroism, dependent upon his subsequent good behavior, and "goes straight."

But there is a problem: Someone, using his exact modus operandi, begins a series of heists--throwing him into an extremely had light with the local gendarme.

Grace Kelly, as Frances Stevens, a somewhat spoiled American heiress, guesses his actual identity when he is trying to remain in hiding undercover in order to discover the perpetrator, and the plot thickens.

In the unlikely event that you have not seen this film, I don't wish to spoil it for you, so I'll not divulge any more of the plot, but it is HItchcock's usual masterful job, superbly played by a couple of Hollywood's top superstars when they were at the height of their careers.

This film was released in VHS on April 1, 2003. It is one of those timeless movies that never gets tiresome. A true classic representing a time when actors and actresses actually had character, and were identifiable as real professionals. Lord, I miss the "old days" when titillating the audience with filthy language and sex scenes was not necessary to hold their interest--just good stories and good acting.

Joseph (Joe) Pierre ...
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4.0 out of 5 stars Languid but beautiful romantic thriller, Sept. 1 2003
By 
Dennis Littrell (SoCal/NorCal/Maui) - See all my reviews
This review is from: To Catch a Thief (VHS Tape)
This is probably Hitchcock's most beautiful movie. Grace Kelly is well (but of course decorously) displayed in delicate and perfectly fitted summer dresses and evening gowns (designed by Edith Head) that show off her exquisite arms and shoulders while accentuating her elegant neck and jaw line--and, as she turns for the camera, the graceful line of her back. Opposite her is one of Hollywood's most dashing leading men, the incomparable Cary Grant.
The cinematography by long-time Hitchcock collaborator Robert Burks was shot on location in the French Riviera. The style is daylight clear and sparkling, bright as the dream of a princess to be, always focused without a hint of darkness anywhere. Even the scenes shot at night on the rooftops seem to glow. The houses on the hills overlooking Princess Grace's future home and the narrow cobble stone roads with the low-lying stone walls suggest a refined and elegant lifestyle to come. Even though she drives too fast, one is not worried that she might crash...
Cary Grant is John Robie who fought with the French resistence during WWII and then became a jewel thief, dubbed "The Cat" for his ability to slink quietly in the night over roof tops and to steal into the bedrooms of the rich and take their jewels without waking them. As the movie opens he is retired from his life of crime and living comfortably in a villa in the hills above Nice. The complications begin immediately as the police arrive at his villa to question him about some recent cat-like jewel robberies. Robie is innocent of course (we are led to believe) and to prove his innocence he is motivated to find the real thief.
Grace Kelly plays Frances Stevens, the slightly naughty nouveau riche daughter of the widow of a Texas-style oil millionaire. She is used to having men fall all over themselves trying to court her, but Robie seems uninterested, and this excites her fancy and she goes after him. It is interesting to note that by this time Cary Grant (51 when the film was released) had become such a heart throb that directors liked to have the women (who were always noticeably younger; Kelly was 26) chase after him. Audrey Hepburn does as much in Charade (1963). One notes that here, as in Charade, the women kiss Cary Grant first, not the other way around. Here it is nicely done as the previously demure Frances takes a surprising initiative at the door of her hotel suite.
The story itself is rather bland and predictable, reminding me of a James Bond flick from, say, the sixties as though toned down for an audience of old maids. Notable in supporting roles are Brigitte Auber as the athletic Danielle Foussard, John Williams as the British insurance agent, and Jessie Royce Landis as Frances Stevens' mother. Hitch makes his de rigueur appearance as a passenger on the mini-bus that Robie takes to get away from the gendarmes early in the film.
See this for Grace Kelly whose cool and playful demeanor and statuesque beauty form the heart of this somewhat languid romantic thriller.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Wonderfully clever and entertaining!!!, July 5 2003
This review is from: To Catch a Thief (Bilingual) (DVD)
TO CATCH A THIEF, directed by Alfred Hitchcock, is a lush and entertaining comedy/thriller concerning a jewel thief on the French Riviera. The film´¿s title was based upon an ancient proverb: ´¿Set a thief to catch a thief,´¿ with double meanings regarding a double chase. The hero, John Robie, a falsely-accused former cat burglar, has to find and catch the ´¿real´¿ cat burglar before he is caught himself, while the heroine, Frances Stevens, is on a quest to ´¿catch´¿ him--first as a burglar and then as a husband. Each wishes ´¿To Catch a Thief.´¿
Unlike most of Hitchcock´¿s work, this thriller is very low-key and based around a small mystery. As time passes, the audience realizes there is more afoot to this game than at first meets the eye. Does Frances have more malicious intent in trailing Robie´¿s every move, or is her quest purely husband-oriented? The robberies are all in his particular style; could our hero be lying? When an investigation winds up in murder, and Robie is blamed by Francis for the theft of her priceless family jewels, Robie must defy death and attempt to grasp some sense of the truth, before he loses everything. At times, you are not quite
certain who everyone truly is. They are playing two-sides of a chess game; much like NOTORIOUS. Can you trust them or do they have something sinister up their sleeves?
Spread throughout the dialogue are sensationally clever double entendres that although made in a light manner, still overshadow a deeper meaning. They come fast and furious throughout most of the film. It´¿s all done in a knowing, cheeky fashion, which was rendered to placate the overzealous Production Code Administration as much as it was to remind the audience that, in the end, this is all in good fun.
One of the few good points about the old Hollywood Production Code was the creative dialogue it caused writers to come up with in order to get their points across; which is also why the fireworks/kiss scene is still effective. It´¿s a wonder the dialogue passed through the censors without a murmur. Obviously, filmmakers were now doing everything in their power to subvert the code--albeit in a friendly, comedic manner. I believe if this film had been played more seriously and didn´¿t have such a light and comictone, most of the dialogue would not have passed through the code. Lucky for us, it did.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Hitchcock verges into comedy, June 26 2003
By 
J R Zullo (SŃo Paulo, Brazil) - See all my reviews
This review is from: To Catch a Thief (Bilingual) (DVD)
"To catch a thief" has many elements that will grip all kinds of viewers to the screen. The scenario is the great french Riviera, and you have to add to the incredible landscape the fact that this movie was made in 1954, so there's that glamorous, "antique" touch. Main characters: Cary Grant and Grace Kelly. Cary Grant is what women call "good-looking" and besides he has a tremendous comic vein that shows in his face. His kind of comedy is subtle and many times he doesn't have to say a word, just using his facial expressions to be funny (watch also Hitchcock's "North by northwest" to see how funny Cary Grant can be). Grace Kelly has the highest beauty and glamour possible in an actress in the fifties (similar to Nicole Kidman in the 2000s). Also, she's a very talented and expressfull actress, being alternately cute and hard. And, hanging above it all we have Alfred Hitchcock, more than just directing, conductiong his orchestra.
With all these elements, "To catch a thief" has to be an interesting and entertaining movie. The plot: Cary Grant is John "the cat" Robie, a retired jewel thief living comfortably in the Riviera. But, to his dismay, recently some copycat (get it?) starts robbing the wealthy people on vacation in southern France. Not only the police suspects Cary Grant went back on business, but also his former comrades in crime threaten him, not wanting to return to prison.
During 100 minutes, Hitchcock and his cast give us thrilling chasing scenes along narrow, drop-dead roads, the usual falling corpses and vertigo situation, romantic conflicts and, in the end, a twist that, if not completely unexpexted, still good. In fact, all these features are somewhat shadowed by the amazingly fast-paced and intelligent dialogue between the main characters. "To catch a thief" may not be Hitchcock's finest and most thrilling movie, but it's a good example that he could make non-Hitchcock-regular movies and still be very good.
Grade 8.7/10
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To Catch a Thief (Special Collector's Edition) (Bilingual) [Import]
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