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Author Topic: Alfred Hitchcock  (Read 9202 times)
Christopher
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« on: July 25, 2008, 04:43:09 PM »

I did a search and couldn't find a Hitchcock thread. I know we've had one before, but I guess that could have been on the old board. Anyhow, we should have a general Hitchcock thread. He was sorta good at what he did. ;) And I did notice that there's a decent number of Hitchcock titles in our survivor game.

I've recently watched The Lady Vanishes and Young and Innocent, and I was very impressed with both. I'd seen The Lady Vanishes a long time ago, but liked it much more this time around. I've realized there's a number of his British films I haven't seen, so I need to get to those. I've seen a few others but not a lot. I haven't seen any of his silent films, and I'd think The Lodger would probably be a must.

So what are everybody's favorite Hitchcock titles? Least favorite?

Usually if I'm going to name off a few favorite titles, I'll say Vertigo, Psycho, Strangers on a Train, Shadow of a Doubt, and Frenzy. Vertigo is my favorite, but the others are just randomly listed.

Of all his films I've seen, I think Topaz is my least favorite. I should probably watch it again, actually. I couldn't really seem to get into it.
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WeAllHaveItCominKid
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« Reply #1 on: July 25, 2008, 06:06:03 PM »


I'm a big Hitchcock fan here so I always welcome a thread dedicated to arguably the best suspense director ever.

My personal favorite Hitchcock film is "The Birds." I just think it's absolutely brilliant that a man can direct a film without a musical score and still make it tention and suspense filled. It's a think of genius if you ask me.

I own most of the Hitchcock library. I have many, many favorites.
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« Reply #2 on: July 28, 2008, 04:45:55 AM »

Lets have a Hitchcock top 5

I'll go with

Vertigo

North By Northwest

The Birds

Rebecca

Rear Window
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Alcatraz
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« Reply #3 on: July 28, 2008, 09:21:01 AM »

A top 5. . . . lesse:

1. Psycho

2. Rear Window

3. Rebecca

4. North by Northwest

5. Vertigo


Psycho introduced me to black and white films and I loved it, so its def my #1 Hitchcock film.
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Ellen
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« Reply #4 on: July 28, 2008, 06:15:09 PM »

These are sort of in order. From what I have, my favorites are . . .

Rebecca (1940)
Rear Window (1954)
Psycho (1960)
Dial M for Murder (1954)
The Birds (1963)
Notorious (1946)
North by Northwest (1959)
Strangers on a Train (1951)
Vertigo (1958)   
Spellbound (1945) 
The Man Who Knew Too Much (1934)

The only one I have that I don't care for is The Man Who Knew Too Much (1956).

I still want to see this one. The Trouble with Harry (1955)

Here are some that he directed, that are totally legal to view. Their copyrights are now public domain.

The 39 Steps (1935)
Shadow of a Doubt (1943)
The Man Who Knew Too Much (1934)
The Lady Vanishes (1938)
Stage Fright (1950)
Young and Innocent (The Girl Was Young) (1937)

I've not seen all of these, so I'm not saying they're all worth watching. To each their own, anyway!
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« Reply #5 on: July 29, 2008, 04:01:53 AM »

I'm willing to bet those films you listed are not in the public domain, except maybe the 30's movies, but I doubt those are either.  They're all worth watching, though I have not seen the last one you listed.

Anyway, Shadow of a Doubt is probably my favorite Hitchcock film, followed by Rear Window and North By Northwest.

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« Reply #6 on: July 29, 2008, 08:29:04 AM »

I truly believe they are. Here is their about page.


I wouldn't dare to post them, if I thought otherwise.
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« Reply #7 on: July 29, 2008, 04:22:45 PM »

Psycho introduced me to black and white films and I loved it, so its def my #1 Hitchcock film.
Psycho was my favorite Hitchcock film for a while. It was the first of his I saw, waaay back when I was around 10 or so. I didn't know anything about the movie before watching it, which is, of course, ideal. I remember it just came on TV, whatever channel I had it on, and I sat and watched it.

And of course I remember [email protected] showing Alfred Hitchcock Presents, which is one of my all time favorite TV shows. I'm a sucker for anthology shows anyhow, and Presents and Twilight Zone have always been my favorites.

Getting back to my favorite movies, I realized Vertigo was my favorite a few years ago when I was taking a film appreciation class in college (that's been nearly five years ago...now :o). We watched a couple Hitchcock movies in class, and then we had to view Vertigo outside class and write a paper about it. I watched it about three times for that paper, and realized I absolutely loved the movie. It struck such a strong chord with me. It's a movie I've always liked, but it grew into my favorite. The first time I saw it, it was shortly before Jimmy Stewart died, unfortunately. I remember watching this and The Man Who Knew Too Much, and it seemed within weeks later, Stewart had died. Stewart is my favorite of the "old-time" actors, and I think his greatest performance is in Vertigo.

Just to continue this rambling post of mine... ;)

Of my favorites I've listed, I'd say Frenzy might be the most surprising to include. The first time I watched it, probably back sometime as a teenager, I really didn't know what to think about it. It was quite graphic, and laced with this very dark humor. I just thought it was an okay movie. But with multiple viewings, I've liked it more and more. It's so macabre and funny--it's classic Hitchcock!
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Doug
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« Reply #8 on: July 30, 2008, 03:52:14 AM »

I truly believe they are. Here is their about page.


I wouldn't dare to post them, if I thought otherwise.

I wasn't trying to give you a hard time, Ellen, I would just find it shocking that the copyrights for those movies weren't renewed, but anything's possible.  Regardless, the restored version of all of Hitch's movies would have a new copyright, and therefore would not be in the public domain even if the original version is, just in case there's any confusion. 

You mentioned The Trouble with Harry.  I really like that movie.  I watched it on TCM actually just a couple of weeks ago.  Shirley MacLaine is quite charming and Edmund Gwenn is great as the Captain.  It's a very low-key movie considering the outrageousness of the plot, and I remember when I first saw it being a little uncertain for the first twenty minutes or so, but then the movie's charm grew on me.  In another director's hands, the movie might have tried for bigger laughs and perhaps more slapstick, but I enjoy the low-key approach to what is actually quite macabre humor.


Of my favorites I've listed, I'd say Frenzy might be the most surprising to include. The first time I watched it, probably back sometime as a teenager, I really didn't know what to think about it. It was quite graphic, and laced with this very dark humor. I just thought it was an okay movie. But with multiple viewings, I've liked it more and more. It's so macabre and funny--it's classic Hitchcock!

Also one of my favorites.  Hitchcock got away from the glamorous, Hollywood style film of murder and suspense and went back to England to film what is without question his grittiest movie, and is also his most modern film.  There are many of the Hitchcock touches, but it's definitely a different style.  It very likely points to the new direction he might have taken had he stayed healthy and creative for another ten years.  And like you said, the humor is great.  Nobody combined humor and the macabre as deftly as did Hitchcock.  It's one of the many things I love about Shadow of a Doubt.
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« Reply #9 on: November 23, 2008, 06:03:06 PM »

So nobody else has anything to say about Hitchcock? 

Anyway, some of Hitch's films are among the most watched movies in my life, but there's still a few I haven't seen (or have only seen once) and for that I cannot explain why.  So I finally saw Stage Fright the other night.  Here's a few thoughts.  (Ahem, there are SPOILERS here.)

First of all, it features some truly great performances, especially by the female leads Jane Wyman and Marlene Dietrich.  You cannot accuse the film of not being well acted.

In this noir-ish suspense thriller we the audience are told through a “false flashback” that Charlotte Inwood (Marlene Dietrich), a famous stage actress, killed her husband and that Jonathan Cooper (Richard Todd) helped her dispose of her bloodstained dress.  By the end we find out that Cooper was in fact the murderer and that Charlotte witnessed it.  Sort of a lame twist, if you ask me.  Either way they’re both guilty, and there’s not even any twist in motivation -- in fact, there’s no real exploration of motivation given at all, except we are to assume she felt nothing for her husband and was able to convince Cooper to kill him.  Of course, it’s all just an excuse to put our heroine Eve Gill (Jane Wyman), an aspiring actress herself, who one time had a crush on Cooper, into various suspenseful situations as she tries to pin the murder on Charlotte, even going so far as to assume a fake name and act as Charlotte’s dresser.  And the suspense at times is first rate, as only Hitch could do suspense, and in it all are some wonderfully humorous scenes.  Hitchcock, after all, was the master of combining suspense, murder, and humor.

Still, it’s a rather average Hitchcock film, and one he personally did not care for, as he felt the “false flashback” didn’t work.  I think he was onto a good idea there, but like I said, the final twist just doesn’t pay off.  Although at the point we learn for sure he’s the murderer, and in fact had gotten away with murder once before due to a self-defense plea, we see a truly scary transformation as he’s hiding backstage with Eve, and begins to come to the conclusion that if he commits murder a third time, this time with no motive at all, that perhaps he can escape with an insanity plea.  The use of lighting in this scene and in several others is worth noting.
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« Reply #10 on: November 23, 2008, 06:40:49 PM »

My all time favourite Hitchcock film is North By Northwest also it`s the only Hitchcock film that I own on DVD  :o
I like Psycho,The Birds,Vertigo,The Rope,Notorius and ofcourse Rear Window.
One of his  not so well received film was Marnie with Sean Connery and Tippi Hedren.It is quite good if not going to make my top five list.
Actually I can think only two films from Hitchcock that didn`t work for me and those were Topaz and Torn Curtain even though the latter had Paul Newman in it.
Also there`s still number of Hitchcock films that I´ve not seen yet like The Paradine Case,Family Plot,Stage Fright and just about anything that he did before The 39 Steps.
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« Reply #11 on: November 24, 2008, 05:39:38 AM »

My top 5 Hitchcock.

1. Vertigo

2. Rear Window

3. Psycho

4. Rope

5. Frenzy
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« Reply #12 on: November 24, 2008, 05:46:46 AM »

 :)  I watched yesterday night " Mary " (1931)  It was very interesting ,  because OV was in German !   :o
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« Reply #13 on: November 24, 2008, 06:42:50 AM »

:)  I watched yesterday night " Mary " (1931)  It was very interesting ,  because OV was in German !   :o

That's not surprising ... Mary was the German version of the film released in English as Murder. According to a commentator on the IMDb, it was ...

Quote
filmed at the same time on the same sets [as Murder] but with a mostly different cast, [and] is 28 minutes shorter than the English version! It leaves out all of the touches that make the English version enjoyable, and also leaves out some of the clues that lead to the murderer.

http://us.imdb.com/title/tt0021128/#comment

It wasn't uncommon in the early days of "talkies" for different versions of movies to be filmed in different languages; the modern practice of dubbing hadn't been developed yet.

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« Reply #14 on: November 24, 2008, 09:30:45 AM »

My favourites would be Rear Window and The Birds.
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« Reply #15 on: November 24, 2008, 03:04:08 PM »


I'm watching "Rebecca" right now. I just love this film. It's amazing that this is the only Hitchcock film that won BEST PICTURE out of all his great work.
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« Reply #16 on: November 25, 2008, 03:41:39 AM »

I read today that John Michael Hayes passed away a few days ago..

Hayes was a screen writer who collaborated with Hitchcock on four films..

To Catch A Thief, The Trouble With Harry, The Man Who Knew Too Much and most notably Rear Window.

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« Reply #17 on: November 25, 2008, 06:23:30 AM »

I read today that John Michael Hayes passed away a few days ago..

Hayes was a screen writer who collaborated with Hitchcock on four films..

To Catch A Thief, The Trouble With Harry, The Man Who Knew Too Much and most notably Rear Window.

R.I.P.

Here's a link to his obit in the New York Times:

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/25/movies/25hayes.html

Quote
In interviews over the years, Mr. Hayes was forthright about what it was like to write for Mr. Hitchcock. “I enjoyed working with him professionally, but off the screen he wasn’t so likable,” he told The Worcester Telegram & Gazette in 1999. “He was egotistical to the point of madness.”
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« Reply #18 on: November 25, 2008, 01:48:52 PM »

   :(   R.I.P.  Mr. Hayes .


    I watched last night " Rope" ( 1948 ) .   I love this one very much .  This film is very simple but I think that there are many interesting things .
 
        Before, Jimmy's performance is very nice as always .   Camera work ; like a long one take shot is beautiful . The plot of this film is very interesting too.
        A story make feeling about homosexual is rare in those days .   I felt everything very fresh !
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« Reply #19 on: March 24, 2009, 11:14:18 AM »

Here's my top ten list of favorite Hitchcock movies. It's difficult to put them in any kind of an order because they're all so good. It goes something like this...

Vertigo (1958)
Shadow of a Doubt (1943)
Psycho (1960)
North by Northwest (1959)
Rear Window (1954)
Lifeboat (1944)
The Birds (1963)
Strangers on a Train (1951)
Notorious (1946)
Dial M for Murder (1954)

There are several more that I haven't seen in a while and want to pick up on DVD.

Honorable mention needs to go to 'Alfred Hitchcock Presents' and 'The Alfred Hitchcock Hour', TV anthology series' I watched as a youngster that got me interested in Hitchcock in the first place.
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