Based on the famous series of dialogues between Francois Truffaut and Alfred Hitchcock from the 1960s, the book moves chronologically through Hitchcock's films to discuss his career, techniques, and effects he achieved. It changed the way Hitchcock was perceived, as a popular director of suspense films - such as Psycho and The Birds - and revealed to moviegoers and critics, the depth of Hitchcock's perception and his mastery of the art form. As a result of the changed perceptions about Hitchcock, his masterpiece, Vertigo, hit the No 1 slot in Sight & Sound's recent poll of film-makers and critics, displacing Citizen Kane as the Best Film of all time.
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This definitive illustrated survey of all of Alfred Hitchcock's films is a book no movie buff or Hitchcock fan can afford to be without. The monumental scope of Alfred Hitchcock's work remains unsurpassed by any other movie director, past or present. So many of his movies have achieved classic status that even a partial list—Psycho, The Birds, Rear Window, Vertigo, Spellbound—brings a flood of memories. In this essential text, reissued on the occasion of Hitchcock's centennial, internationally renowned Hitchcock authority Donald Spoto describes and analyzes every movie made by this master filmmaker. Illustrated throughout with shots from each film, The Art of Alfred Hitchcock also includes a storyboard section, a complete filmography, and “A Hitchcock Album” (sixteen pages of photos) as an added celebration of his life.
Alfred Hitchcock: A Life in Darkness and Light is the definitive biography of the Master of Suspense and the most widely recognized film director of all time. In a career that spanned six decades and produced more than 60 films – including The 39 Steps, Vertigo, Psycho, and The Birds – Alfred Hitchcock set new standards for cinematic invention and storytelling. Acclaimed biographer Patrick McGilligan re-examines his life and extraordinary work, challenging perceptions of Hitchcock as the “macabre Englishman” and sexual obsessive, and reveals instead the ingenious craftsman, trickster, provocateur, and romantic. With insights into his relationships with Hollywood legends – such as Cary Grant, James Stewart, Ingrid Bergman, and Grace Kelly – as well as his 54-year marriage to Alma Reville and his inspirations in the thriller genre, the book is full of the same dark humor, cliffhanger suspense, and revelations that are synonymous with one of the most famous and misunderstood figures in cinema.
Haeffner is less interested in the concept of the Freudian subconscious or in the torment said to lurk deep inside Hitchcock. Instead, he examines the force that has been called Hitchcock's genius in the light of his social & economic situation, providing a novel reading of his cinematic work.
Among the abundant Alfred Hitchcock literature, Hitchcock's Motifs has found a fresh angle. Starting from recurring objects, settings, character-types and events, Michael Walker tracks some forty motifs, themes and clusters across the whole of Hitchcock's oeuvre, including not only all his 52 extant feature films but also representative episodes from his TV series. Connections and deeper inflections that Hitchcock fans may have long sensed or suspected can now be seen for what they are: an intricately spun web of cross-references which gives this unique artist's work the depth, consistency and resonance that justifies Hitchcock's place as probably the best know film director ever. The title, the first book-length study of the subject, can be used as a mini-encyclopaedia of Hitchcock's motifs, but the individual entries also give full attention to the wider social contexts, hidden sources and the sometimes unconscious meanings present in the work and solidly linking it to its time and place.
The most comprehensive volume ever published on Alfred Hitchcock, covering his career and legacy as well as the broader cultural and intellectual contexts of his work. Contains thirty chapters by the leading Hitchcock scholars Covers his long career, from his earliest contributions to other directors’ silent films to his last uncompleted last film Details the enduring legacy he left to filmmakers and audiences alike
From the beginning of his career, Alfred Hitchcock wanted to be considered an artist. Although his thrillers were immensely popular, and Hitchcock himself courted reviewers, he was, for many years, regarded as no more than a master craftsman. By the 1960s, though, critics began calling him an artist of unique vision and gifts. What happened to make Hitchcock's reputation as a true innovator and singular talent? Through a close examination of Hitchcock's personal papers, scripts, production notes, publicity files, correspondence, and hundreds of British and American reviews, Robert Kapsis here traces Hitchcock's changing critical fortunes. Vertigo, for instance, was considered a flawed film when first released; today it is viewed by many as the signal achievement of a great director. According to Kapsis, this dramatic change occurred because the making of the Hitchcock legend was not solely dependent on the quality of his films. Rather, his elevation to artist was caused by a successful blending of self-promotion, sponsorship by prominent members of the film community, and, most important, changes in critical theory which for the first time allowed for the idea of director as auteur. Kapsis also examines the careers of several other filmmakers who, like Hitchcock, have managed to cross the line that separates craftsman from artist, and shows how Hitchcock's legacy and reputation shed light on the way contemporary reputations are made. In a chapter about Brian De Palma, the most reknowned thriller director since Hitchcock, Kapsis explores how Hitchcock's legacy has affected contemporary work in—and criticism of—the thriller genre. Filled with fascinating anecdotes and intriguing excerpts, and augmented by interviews with Hitchcock's associates, this thoroughly documented and engagingly written book will appeal to scholars and film enthusiasts alike. "Required reading for Hitchcock scholars...scrupulously researched, invaluable material for those who continue to as
Alfred Hitchcock called the silent "the purest form of cinema," and the ten silent films he directed between 1925 and 1929 reveal the young director's mature artistry. Hitchcock's silents have often been characterized as the work of a talented amateur, a young director practicing his craft during a pre-sound era of antiquated instruments and poor film techniques--the director experimented with myriad points of view, unique camera angles and movements, and special effects such as dissolves, blurriness, and violent cuts. These films, however, contain the first appearances of some of his greatest and most familiar techniques: the vertigo-inducing crowd scene, the symbolic use of inanimate objects, the manipulation of the audience's emotions, and the self-conscious, often macabre wit. This work discovers Hitchcock's early talent and skill through close readings of the films from The Pleasure Garden to the silent version of Blackmail, using shot-by-shot descriptions and interpretations. Each film's chapter includes technical information, a summary of the critical response from the film's release to the present, and detailed analysis of the camera techniques and themes Hitchcock uses.
From a couple racing across the top of Mount Rushmore to a woman's final shower at an isolated motel, no other filmmaker has given movie fans more unforgettable images or heart-pounding thrills than Alfred Hitchcock. Now you can share in the Master of Suspense's inspiration and development -- his entire creative process -- in Hitchcock's Notebooks. With the complete cooperation of the Hitchcock estate and access to the director's notebooks, journals, and archives, Dan Auiler takes you from the very beginnings of story creation to the master's final touches during post-production and publicity. Actual production notes from Hitchcock's masterpieces join detailed interviews with key production personnel, including writers, actors and actresses, and Hitchcock's personal assistant of more than thirty years. Mirroring the director's working methods to give you the actual feel of his process, and highlighted by nearly nearly one hundred photographs and illustrations, this is the definitive guide into the mind of a cinematic legend.
A gripping short biography of the extraordinary Alfred Hitchock, the master of suspense. Alfred Hitchcock was a strange child. Fat, lonely, burning with fear and ambition, his childhood was an isolated one, scented with fish from his father's shop. Afraid to leave his bedroom, he would plan great voyages, using railway timetables to plot an exact imaginary route across Europe. So how did this fearful figure become the one of the most respected film directors of the twentieth century? As an adult, Hitch rigorously controlled the press's portrait of him, drawing certain carefully selected childhood anecdotes into full focus and blurring all others out. In this quick-witted portrait, Ackroyd reveals something more: a lugubriously jolly man fond of practical jokes, who smashes a once-used tea cup every morning to remind himself of the frailty of life. Iconic film stars make cameo appearances, just as Hitch did in his own films: Grace Kelly, Cary Grant, and James Stewart despair of his detached directing style and, perhaps most famously of all, Tippi Hedren endures cuts and bruises from a real-life fearsome flock of birds. Alfred Hitchcock wrests the director's chair back from the master of control and discovers what lurks just out of sight, in the corner of the shot.
Alfred Hitchcock made many great films, but he also made many that critics and audiences largely dismissed. These least celebrated films, despite their admitted flaws and relative obscurity, offer much to reward the open-minded viewer. This critical study examines and reappraises fifteen such films generally overlooked by scholars and Hitchcock aficionados: Juno and the Paycock, The Skin Game, Waltzes from Vienna, Jamaica Inn, The Paradine Case, Under Capricorn, I Confess, Torn Curtain, Number Seventeen, Rich and Strange, Secret Agent, Mr. and Mrs. Smith, Stage Fright, The Wrong Man, and Topaz. Each film is discussed and analyzed in detail, revealing the master's touch in many previously unheralded ways. Brief assessments of the films from popular review compendia introduce each one, and excerpted highlights of numerous works of scholarship are liberally sprinkled throughout the text. In addition, wonderful rare still photographs from each film are included. Readers will come away with a richer sense of the director's talents in these films, adding to their appreciation of his work in unexpected ways.
An engaging look at Alfred Hitchcock's work from all angles, culled from an authoritative source of Hitchcock film commentary.
This new edition of A Hitchcock Reader aims to preserve what has been so satisfying and successful in the first edition: a comprehensive anthology that may be used as a critical text in introductory or advanced film courses, while also satisfying Hitchcock scholars by representing the rich variety of critical responses to the director's films over the years. a total of 20 of Hitchcock?s films are discussed in depth - many others are considered in passing section introductions by the editors that contextualize the essays and the films they discuss well-researched bibliographic references, which will allow readers to broaden the scope of their study of Alfred Hitchcock
When Hitchcock's Films was first published, it quickly became known as a new kind of book on film and as a necessary text in the growing body of Hitchcock criticism. This revised edition of Hitchcock's Films Revisited includes a substantial new preface in which Wood reveals his personal history as a critic -- including his coming out as a gay man, his views on his previous critical work, and how his writings, his love of film, and his personal life and have remained deeply intertwined through the years. This revised edition also includes a new chapter on Marnie.
With a sharp eye for social detail and the pressures of class inequality, Alfred Hitchcock brought to the American scene a perspicacity and analytical shrewdness unparalleled in American cinema. Murray Pomerance works from a basis in cultural analysis and a detailed knowledge of Alfred Hitchcock's films and production techniques to explore how America of the 1940s, 1950s, and 1960s is revealed and critically commented upon in Hitchcock's work. Alfred Hitchcock's America is full of stunning details that bring new light to Hitchcock's method and works. The American "spirit of place," is seen here in light of the titanic American personality, American values in a consumer age, social class and American social form, and the characteristic American marriage. The book’s analysis ranges across a wide array of films from Rebecca to Family Plot, and examines in depth the location sequences, characterological types, and complex social expectations that riddled American society while Hitchcock thrived there.
On the surface, The Philosophical Hitchcock: Vertigo and the Anxieties of Unknowingness, is a close reading of Alfred Hitchcock’s 1958 masterpiece Vertigo. This, however, is a book by Robert B. Pippin, one of our most penetrating and creative philosophers, and so it is also much more. Even as he provides detailed readings of each scene in the film, and its story of obsession and fantasy, Pippin reflects more broadly on the modern world depicted in Hitchcock’s films. Hitchcock’s characters, Pippin shows us, repeatedly face problems and dangers rooted in our general failure to understand others—or even ourselves—very well, or to make effective use of what little we do understand. Vertigo, with its impersonations, deceptions, and fantasies, embodies a general, common struggle for mutual understanding in the late modern social world of ever more complex dependencies. By treating this problem through a filmed fictional narrative, rather than discursively, Pippin argues, Hitchcock is able to help us see the systematic and deep mutual misunderstanding and self-deceit that we are subject to when we try to establish the knowledge necessary for love, trust, and commitment, and what it might be to live in such a state of unknowingness. A bold, brilliant exploration of one of the most admired works of cinema, The Philosophical Hitchcock will lead philosophers and cinephiles alike to a new appreciation of Vertigo and its meanings.
In spring 1953, the great director Alfred Hitchcock made the pivotal decision to take a chance and work with a young writer, John Michael Hayes. The four films Hitchcock made with Hayes over the next several years-Rear Window, To Catch a Thief, The Trouble with Harry, and The Man Who Knew Too Much-represented an extraordinary change of style. Each was distinguished by a combination of glamorous stars, sophisticated dialogue, and inventive plots, and resulted in some of Hitchcock's most distinctive and intimate work, based in large part on Hayes's exceptional scripts. Screenwriter and film historian Steven DeRosa follows Hitchcock and Hayes through each film from initial discussions to completed picture and also reveals the personal story-filled with inspiration and humor, jealousy and frustration-of the initial synergy between the two men before their relationship fell apart. Writing with Hitchcock not only provides new insight into four films from a master but also sheds light on the mysterious process through which classic motion pictures are created. This updated edition includes previously unpublished archival material such as Alfred Hitchcock's dubbing notes for Rear Window, deleted script sequences, Hitchcock's own notes on John Michael Hayes's screenplay for The Man Who Knew Too Much, and forty-four illustrations.
Alfred Hitchcock's American films are not only among the most admired works in world cinema, they also offer some of our most acute responses to the changing shape of American society in the 1940s, 50s, and 60s. The authors of this anthology show how famous films such as Strangers on a Train, Vertigo, North by Northwest, and Rear Window, along with more obscure ones such as Rope, The Wrong Man, and Family Plot, register the ideologies and insurgencies, the normative assumptions and the cultural alternatives, that shaped these tumultuous decades. They argue that, just as these films occupy a visual landscape defined by the grand monuments of American civic life--Mt. Rushmore, the Statue of Liberty, the United Nations--they are also marked by their preoccupation with the social mores and private practices of mid-century America. Not only are big-city and suburban life the explicit subjects of films like Rear Window and Shadow of a Doubt, so are the forms of experience that emerge within these social spaces, whether the urban voyeurism examined by the former or the intertwining of banality and violence depicted in the latter. Indeed, just about every form of American life that was achieving social power at this time--the national security state; the science and art of psychoanalysis; the privileging of the free-wheeling, improvisatory self; the postwar codification and fissuring of gender roles; road-culture and its ancillary creation, the motel--is given detailed, critical, and mordant examination in Hitchcocks films. The Hitchcock who emerges is not merely the inspired technician and psychological excavator that critics of the past two generations have justly hailed; he is also a cultural critic of remarkable insight and undeniable prescience.
- Author : Edward White
- Publisher : W. W. Norton & Company
- Release Date : 2021-04-13
- Genre : Biography & Autobiography
- Pages : 400
- ISBN : 9781324002406
A fresh, innovative biography of the twentieth century’s most iconic filmmaker. In The Twelve Lives of Alfred Hitchcock, Edward White explores the Hitchcock phenomenon—what defines it, how it was invented, what it reveals about the man at its core, and how its legacy continues to shape our cultural world. The book’s twelve chapters illuminate different aspects of Hitchcock’s life and work: “The Boy Who Couldn’t Grow Up”; “The Murderer”; “The Auteur”; “The Womanizer”; “The Fat Man”; “The Dandy”; “The Family Man”; “The Voyeur”; “The Entertainer”; “The Pioneer”; “The Londoner”; “The Man of God.” Each of these angles reveals something fundamental about the man he was and the mythological creature he has become, presenting not just the life Hitchcock lived but also the various versions of himself that he projected, and those projected on his behalf. From Hitchcock’s early work in England to his most celebrated films, White astutely analyzes Hitchcock’s oeuvre and provides new interpretations. He also delves into Hitchcock’s ideas about gender; his complicated relationships with “his women”—not only Grace Kelly and Tippi Hedren but also his female audiences—as well as leading men such as Cary Grant, and writes movingly of Hitchcock’s devotion to his wife and lifelong companion, Alma, who made vital contributions to numerous classic Hitchcock films, and burnished his mythology. And White is trenchant in his assessment of the Hitchcock persona, so carefully created that Hitchcock became not only a figurehead for his own industry but nothing less than a cultural icon. Ultimately, White’s portrayal illuminates a vital truth: Hitchcock was more than a Hollywood titan; he was the definitive modern artist, and his significance reaches far beyond the confines of cinema.
Explores Hitchcock’s repeated voyages into the dreamlike. A Dream of Hitchcock examines the recurring motif of the dream in Hitchcock’s work—dreamscapes, dream processes, the dream effect—by focusing on close readings of six celebrated but often misinterpreted films: Strangers on a Train, Rebecca, Saboteur, Rear Window, To Catch a Thief, and Family Plot. The Hitchcockian dream, as invoked here, is not so much a dream as it is a way of understanding, in its dramatic contexts, an “unearthly,” irrational quality in the filmmaker’s work. Rebecca revolves around problems of memory; To Catch a Thief around uncertainty; Saboteur around pungent aspiration; Family Plot around intuition; Rear Windowaround expansive imagination; and Strangers on a Train around delirious madness. All of these films enunciate the return of the past, the invocation of a boundary beyond which experience becomes unpredictable and uncertain, and the celebration of values that transcend narrative resolution. Murray Pomerance’s distinctive method for thinking through Hitchcock’s work allows these films to inform theorization, not the other way around. His original, provocative, and groundbreaking explorations point to the importance of fantasy, improbability, doubt disconcertion, hope, memory, intuition, and belief, through which the oneiric comes to the center of waking life. “This lively, informed, insightful book is a like a jazz riff on the six films under consideration, mixing cultural, historical, filmic, and literary allusions to interpret each film. I think it would be as interesting and helpful to a person just beginning to study Hitchcock’s films seriously as to an academic who has been studying and writing about Hitchcock for years.” — Richard A. Gilmore, author of Doing Philosophy at the Movies