“I’m just a man hiding in the corner with a camera … watching.”
Everyone knows Alfred Hitchcock. Most know him as that creepy, looming silhouette framed in the window of all of his movies; his paunchy belly, his jowly face, his long nose, and his bad posture. A lot of people know his movies, famous for their brilliance, their beauty, and because they’re so psychologically scarring that they’ve terrified people generation after generation.
The few of us that are obsessed with movies (so me, and like, maybe four other people that were silly enough to take on film studies as a minor in college) know Hitchcock as a brilliant, detail obsessed auteur. A man who obsessively story boarded all of his films so that he never had to change from his initial vision. A man who shot all of his films in chronological order despite the fact that it was heavily inconvenient and cost the studios millions of dollars. A man who built an entire apartment complex in Paramount studios and used it to control every single sound that wafted through every scene in Rear Window.
Ok, so he was a little bit crazy. But brilliant. And way ahead of his time.
Fortunately, Sacha Gervasi recognized this brilliance and decided to write and direct a film based on good old Alfred called Hitchcock. The movie spans the Hitchcock’s filmmaking process and the making of his most widely contested film, Psycho. The movie is star studded, including Anthony Hopkins playing the lead, Helen Mirren as his badass wife, and Scarlett Johansson as Janet Leigh. While Psycho initially received mixed reviews, early reviews for Hitchcock are 100% positive and it’s already slated as a contender for this year’s Oscars. I think it says a lot about Hitchcock that a film about his filmmaking makes for an amazing film.
The movie isn’t in theaters until November 23rd, but there is plenty of Hitchcock to catch up on while you wait. The entire series of Alfred Hitchcock Presents is currently streaming on Netflix. Not to mention, my favorite Hitchcock film Dial M for Murder is also on Netflix. Plenty of time to catch up your Hitchcock expertise before the film comes out. If you don’t have Netflix (why wouldn’t you?) then ask a friend or neighbor to borrow one of their classic Hitchcock DVDs. At least one out of three college educated twenty-somethings has a Hitchcock DVD lying around somewhere, according to a statistic I just made up but is probably true.
More of my Hitchcock recommendations are: North by Northwest, Rear Window, Rebecca, Vertigo, To Catch a Thief, Strangers on a Train, Rope, and (of course) Psycho.
Get a better idea of what I’m talking about in the trailer below: