Up next for Mother's Month, I checked out the Terrence Young '67 thriller, 'Wait Until Dark'. In case that name might be ringing a bell, but you're not quite sure about it, he'd probably be best recognized as a 'Bond' director, with titles like 'Dr. No', 'Thunderball' and 'From Russia With Love'.
Furthermore, Audrey Hepburn was nominated for an Oscar for her role of Susy here. She was recently blinded in an accident along with becoming recently married.
Her husband, Sam Hendrix (Efrem Zimbalist Jr.) is followed home by a group of criminals, lead by a man named Roat (Alan Arkin), after acquiring a random doll from a random woman. The criminals wait until Sam leaves for business before making their move, attempting to get their hands on the doll, only to find the blind Susy in the apartment alone. The whole thing eventually leads to a pretty intense climax, featuring a life-threatening game of cat and mouse between a blind woman and these crooks. Think 'Home Alone' if it was more of a to-be-taken-seriously thriller.
Much like 'Rear Window', this is sort of a bottle movie, and plenty of comparisons can be drawn between the two. However, with two like movies, one usually picks a favorite, and mine has to be 'Rear Window' over 'Wait Until Dark'. While this was still perfectly fine, I just didn't find it offered up as much. And despite her Oscar nomination, Susy sadly wasn't particularly likable to me. But hear me out.
She's a lovely character and all, and her overall personality is very likable, but this is a 1967 version of an independent woman, which, let's just say wasn't exactly fleshed out yet. In my mind, not quite until Lori Strode starts battling Michael Myers in '78. But please, if there's someone before that, feel free to educate me on the matter. Susy here is a fighter, but also a trope. For example, she falls over, cries and begs a lot while she's fighting. That said, there should be a level of fairness offered to the fact that she's supposed to be recently blind and not quite used to it, and your average everyday girl next door. Still though, personally, I didn't quite feel it. Perhaps a good way to compare my feelings on it would be to compare it to an escort mission in your favorite game. Yeah, you're having a lot of fun with it, but this person in trouble can be such a pain.
All that aside, I have to admit that the movie still did a good job at entertaining me. I may not have loved it, but I liked it enough to be able to say I might very well revisit it some time to see if I get more out of it. There's great atmosphere here, it still feels like something different (or at least not-heavily explored) to have a blind person fight off criminals, and it's actually pretty intense at times. It certainly meets the standards of what a thriller was back then, so I can't be too critical about things. I'd say it's just a bit dated. But worth checking out if you're on the lookout for a classic thriller you can have a fun time with.