Alfred Hitchcock was born in the 19th century but gave birth in the 20th century to the age of modern filmmaking.With a firm belief that suspense involves bringing a victim out from the shadows into the light he crafted the kinds of movies that made you care about characters. He began his career making silent films in Britain. He managed to direct 54 movies over the course of six decades.
He studies humans and meditates on their fears and weaknesses.
Place as a Character
Selecting and depicting locations that emitted a strong atmosphere, even personas. The place adds further torment to the main characters. Whether it’s the Bates Motel in Psycho, that apartment in Rope or the yard in Rear Window.
One of his common themes, represents people not knowing themselves, or each other, also multi-dimensions of our personas. Like in Vertigo or in North by Northwest.
Make Your Audience Suffer
His work is famous for putting people on the edge of their seats. They share the emotional or physical threat the character is having.
No Fear of the Pigeonhole
He loved dark humor. His films managed to be a mixture of noir, comedy, suspense and blood. He was fine with being pigeonholed, but maybe that’s because his particular hole was rather large.
Thing for Beautiful Blondes
Some call him a misogynist. While he didn’t give much personality to the women he used them as a foil to the male leads, a trigger by which the male’s psychological issues became disrupted and thus unhinged.
The “Hitchcock” shots
Whether it is faces where only the eyes are in the light, corridor shots, a glance at clouds to suggest presence or lack of god. Various instances of small spaces to suggest claustrophobia, shadows to suggest unknown, lurking fears, colors to express emotions were his common way of conveying the message to the audience.
Interesting Read: Alfred Hitchcock’s 10 Hidden Edits In ‘Rope’
There are many movies in which he did cameo appearances. Do have a look at this compilation.
His movies are about guilt, repression, torment, voyeurism, obsession and phobias. He started and defined the genre, his touch is evident in any psych thriller. Some of our favorite films director by hitchcock include Rear Window, Rope, Psycho, Strangers on a train, North by northwest, Rebecca, Dial M for murder and Vertigo. If you are a fan of suspense then you must try these films.
What are your favorite films from the master of suspense ?