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About LRH

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  1. OH, I just remembered! Duh - it was on TCM last night! Manhattan Murder Mystery. Woody Allen and Diane Keaton. It's a riff on Rear Window. Really terrific mystery with an all-star cast (Anjelica Huston and Alan Alda) and a lot of neurotic Woody Allen humor. Highly recommend! And I just heard an ad on TCM for an upcoming showing of The Night of the Hunter. The stolen money that is hidden (I won't say where) seems a bit of a MacGuffin. Instead, the film is really about good and evil - with Robert Mitchum in just about his most evil role. Children on the run from danger. Fantas
  2. The 1948 British film, The Fallen Idol, has a kind of Hitchcock flavor. A butler who looks after a rich diplomat's son is accused of murder (SPOILER: he's innocent). The little boy thinks he saw the murder happen, but lies to protect him. The lies get the butler further in trouble. There's real suspense here, and it's a psychological drama. There's also a good bit of dark humor, particularly the very last line. Check it out. TCM shows it off and on.
  3. Like many other folks, I too would like to know why Hitchcock pulled the rights to Rope, Rear Window, The Trouble With Harry, The Man Who Knew Too Much (1956), and Vertigo. Thanks for a great class! --Lydia
  4. 1. Psycho opens with title design by Saul Bass and music by Bernard Herrmann. This is their third collaboration for Hitchcock, including Vertigo and North by Northwest. How does the graphic design and the score introduce the main themes of this film? The graphic design is about fragmentation. And there are many fragments or cuts in the film: Good Marion vs Bad Marion (see comment in #3 below) Norman’s split personality The cuts of the shower scene The two-part movie – before and after Marion is killed The score follows this idea of fragmentation. The opening music is made up
  5. 1. Even at the level of the dialogue, this film is playing with the idea that two Hollywood stars are flirting with each other (e.g. the line, "I look vaguely familiar.") How does our pre-existing knowledge of these stars function to create meaning in this scene. Cary Grant is always the suave, debonair type. I think it’s funny that he says he looks familiar. Billy Wilder and Tony Curtis used this ironically in Some Like It Hot. When Curtis was pretending to be a millionaire, he modeled his speech and voice patterns on Grant. And when Jack Lemmon calls him out on it, he quips, “no on
  6. I’d like to comment on the music the accompanies the opening of Frenzy. The sweeping camera work, expansively taking in the Thames and London is matched by the grand orchestral score. And the melody of the opening is quite majestic. It has a sense of the regal and the uplifting (with a very British flair). But its beauty and dignity are incongruous with the rest of the film. But for the name “Hitchcock” as the director, this opening would not portend a film of such violence and brutality. This grand, dignified music also reflects the raising of the Tower Bridge. The awesome machinery
  7. 1. Based on the opening sequence alone, what do you feel you already know about Marnie as a character? In what ways does Hitchcock visually reveal her character through her interaction with objects. The thing that struck me the most was that the name we think is hers is on the first social security card. And it’s Marion: the previous blonde woman who stole money in Psycho. Then, of course, we see that she has many identities, and she just thumbs through, choosing the one that suits her at this time. 2. How does Hitchcock use Bernard Herrmann's score in this scene? Herrmann alwa
  8. Herrmann matches the graphics in that his music spirals as well. There are two musical lines at the beginning. The upper line starts high and moves low and back again. The lower line uses the same chord notes (with one exception), and it starts low and moves high and back again. These lines happen simultaneously and together create a spiral that repeats many times. This musical motive also is a great way to depict obsession as well as vertigo. These repeating melodic patterns (ostinato) mirror the kind of circular, repetitive, relentless thoughts that you can't get out of your head when you a
  9. 1) Rear Window (Grace Kelly is radiant and smart. Clever story.) 2) Vertigo (The score is incredible.) 3) Shadow of a Doubt (Wonderful depiction of everyday life in the 40s - evil lurks in cute little towns.) 4) Psycho (The score, again.) 5) Strangers on a Train (Tennis, trains, the lighter, merry-go-rounds!)
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