Question: I just watched Kill Bill: Vol. 1 and the scene with Daryl Hannah as a hit woman disguised as a nurse reminded me of a TV-movie I saw as a kid. It was about a bunch of nurses in a house, and they’re afraid of a serial killer so they’re not going outside. But the twist is that one of the nurses is the killer, and he’s really a man dressed like a woman. I’m stumped and no one knows what I’m talking about, except for one person who said Alfred Hitchcock directed it. Can you help?
Answer: Sure. What you saw wasn’t a movie but a 1965 episode of The Alfred Hitchcock Hour (1962-1965) — though Alfred Hitchcock himself didn’t direct it — called An Unlocked Window. It was directed by Joseph Newman, based on Ethel Lina White’s 1933 novel Some Must Watch and shot in the house set that was built for Hitchcock’s Psycho (1960). In it, a nurse (Dana Wynter) is hired to care for an elderly invalid and met at his isolated house by a second nurse (T.C. Jones): You know the rest. An Unlocked Window was remade as an episode of Alfred Hitchcock Presents (1985) directed by Fred Walton, whose kick-ass movie about a terrorized baby-sitter, When a Stranger Calls (1979), was just remade. Hitchcock himself filmed another of White’s books, The Wheel Spins (1936), as the classic The Lady Vanishes (1938), and Robert Siodmak made Some Must Watch as the thriller The Spiral Staircase (1946). The reason I think you saw the TV episode rather than the movie is that Siodmak and screenwriter Mel Dinelli’s version — an excellent movie in its own right — deviates significantly from the novel.
Just for the record, the look of Elle Driver, Daryl Hannah's Kill Bill character, was inspired by the one-eyed heroine of a 1974 Danish exploitation movie called Thriller: A Cruel Picture.