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Everything posted by Wizona

  1. In thinking about who would be a Hitchcock collaborator in 2017, I immediately went to the Coen Brothers. The movies these 2 have written, produced and directed beginning with Crimewave in 1985, and especially 1996's Fargo, have definite Hitchcock nuances. The dark humor, the seemingly "normal" people in extraordinary circumstances, the dark hidden motives of character all point to Hitchcock. Like Hitchcock, the Coen's also don't seem too concerned with logic at all times. As far as a modern collaborator in music, it is hard to think of anyone with the genius of Berrmann, but I could see a s
  2. This topic is fun! I am enjoying reading all the posts! Since beginning this course, I am seeing Hitchcockian elements in many movies and TV episodes. One TV episode was glaringly Hitchcockian in some of the camera work. I have been rewatching the original Twighlight Zone on Netfix, and in the episode about the boxer who is past his prime and still has to get in the ring to fight, the director/editor must have been channeling Hitchcock. In the scene during the boxing match, we are shown the spectators of the fight in a montage of hands. We don't ever really see faces, just hands shown in vario
  3. Instead of directly commenting on the Further Reflections questions about Frenzy, I want to discuss what this opening scene says to me in regards to Hitchcock and his career. When the scene opens with the long, long shot over the Thames in London, with the seal of The City of London in the corner, and the music swelling triumphantly, it is like it is meant to be a triumphal return to his homeland for Hitchcock. The Thames is the "red carpet" and Hitchcock is portraying his victor processional to the place he left over 30 years before in frustration over his career. Now here he comes...Hitchcoc
  4. 1. In the opening scene of Marnie we learn some things about her. She is obviously concealing her identity. In fact, she has many identities. One might wonder if she is a spy, as she calmly packs and ditches her old clothes in one suitcase and packs brand new, still in the package clothes in another. She seems organized and methodical. There is no hesitation or panic, just calm actions. 2. Herrmann's score is sad and haunting. It builds to a crescendo when the audience finally gets to see the face of the woman we have been following. The music is beautiful to match the beautiful woman, but th
  5. 1. The opening scene of The Birds seems more like a romantic comedy because of the light flirting and banter going on between the two characters. The audience knows (and later we discover Rod Taylor knows) that Tippi Hedren is not a sales clerk in a pet store and that she knows nothing about birds. This is very similar to romantic comedies where misunderstandings happen and the romance begins. In this scene we learn that Melanie wants to buy a Myna bird and is anxious to get it. She has obviously been in pet shop before because the clerk knows her name. We also learn that she has a sense of hu
  6. 1. Saul Bass's graphic title design introduces the themes of this film by using horizontal and vertical lines. The title of the film, Psycho, is divided into horizontal lines that then move in opposite directions. It almost forms the word Psychotic. During the dissolve into the opening scene, the vertical lines resemble the lines of a heart beat. Bernard Herrmann's score is genius. The hard driving strings make me feel unsettled and anxious. I feel like something bad is coming. The score and the title design work so seamlessly together, that I am again wondering which came first, the title de
  7. 1. The dining car scene in North by Northwest is one of the sexiest scenes in a movie. The way Eva Marie Saint keeps looking frankly at Cary Grant throughout the entire scene and his rakish charm help build the appeal of this scene. I was especially struck by this when Cary Grant lights Eva Marie Saint's cigarette and she gently touches his hand and then blows the match out. That scene is hot! I don't have a lot of background knowledge of Eva Marie Saint, but she comes across as cool, sexy and in control. Now, Cary Grant, I have heard some stories about. I have heard that he loved women, esp
  8. 1. Based on the title sequence of Vertigo, I think the film will be about psychosis and fear of some kind. The psychosis and fear will be related to a woman. Whatever the story in the film, it feels like it will have a cyclical structure. The spirals make it feel relentless, almost inevitable and repeating. 2. In the opening sequence of Vertigo, the most powerful image for me was the static Lissajous figure that resembled an eye with a brow. Besides the fact that it resembled an eye (relating back to the closeup of Kim Novak's eye) it was also unmoving. The other Lissajous figures were spinn
  9. 1. In the opening camera shot of Rear Window Hitchcock is giving the audience some knowledge regarding the characters and setting without the use of dialogue. It is shot from the vantage point of the omniscient audience. The audience is let in on some things that even Jeff doesn't see because his back is to the courtyard and he is sleeping. The audience can see all in this shot, as opposed to the rest of the movie where we see everything from Jeff's point of view. 2. We learn a great deal about Jeff from this opening shot. We learn that he lives in a studio apartment that backs on a courtyard
  10. 1. Hitchcock plays with the metaphor of "criss cross" in various ways in the opening scene of Strangers on a Train. There are many visual criss cross elements. The opposing taxis that frame two different men, who enter the station through different doors, the criss crossing train tracks, the two men's crossed legs, the two men across from each other on the train. Another criss cross item that struck me was the music score. There seemed to be a criss cross of musical themes between the two men, an almost comical, lilting theme for Bruno and more serious, smoother theme for Guy. 2. Hitchcock cr
  11. I just wanted to be sure there was some discussion of Lifeboat. It is near the top of my list of favorite Hitchcock films. I think I enjoy it so much because aside from the fact that it is a "locked door" mystery, it is a wonderful character study. You have a group of people from very different backgrounds and walks of life. All of the characters are recognizable: "upper class" wealthy, the rough working man, the innocent young women, etc. The circumstances force them together and how they react and change as people is truly at the heart of the film.
  12. 1. Hitchcock touches noticeable in this scene are the POV camera angles and close-up shots. The shot of Devlin (Cary Grant) from Alicia's (Ingrid Bergman's) point of view is classic Hitchcock. In addition, the close-up of Bergman lying in the bed is another Hitchcock touch. Bergman seems to be an ordinary person (except for her beauty) awakening with a hangover. This ordinary person is being asked to participate in an extra-ordinary spy job. This is a Hitchcock touch as well. 2. Hitchcock uses interesting framing for Grant when the audience (from Bergman's POV) first sees him framed in the do
  13. 1. The "Hitchcock touches" I see in this scene are mainly based on the camera work. The camera pans across the dirty dishes in the room slowly. The audience is left to try to figure out what is going on, the aftermath of a party? Then we see the cards and Robert Montgomery, with his 3-days beard and we start to realize that something else is going on. There is no dialogue for most of the scene. The audience has to rely on the visual images. There are elements of this opening scene in Rear Window, when the camera pans slowly around Jimmy Stewart's apartment and the audience is left to figure ou
  14. 1. In the opening scene of Shadow of a Doubt, we learn that Uncle Charlie is being pursued by someone (maybe the police or maybe a gangster he wronged). He seems, if not unconcerned, resigned to it. Almost as if he knows it is futile to fight against it. He seems tired, almost defeated in some way. We also learn that he must be a likeable person in some ways, as his landlady seems concerned about him, and even warns him about the men looking for him. She also believes he is honest, evidenced by her statement that she hasn't had much trouble with dishonesty. There is lots of money on his bedsid
  15. 1. The opening scene of Rebecca is different from Hitchcock earlier British films in several ways. First this opening is not taking place in a public place with lots of people about. The first minutes there aren't even any people at all. Then when people are present, it is only 2 and they are the main characters of the story. Another difference is that Manderley is not a place where the average person might find themselves, quite the opposite, it is an exclusive, private place where regular people may not enter. This is the same for the South of France cliff scene. Not many average people woul
  16. I'm not sure my favorite underrated Hitchcock film is underrated, but it is Rebecca. I first saw this film as a teenager, and the gothic romance nature of the story hooked me. This is also the first time I was introduced to Sir Laurence Olivier, and I was in love! Grace, elegance, and that wonderful English accent! He made the perfect gothic romance hero to my teenage eyes (maybe even my adult eyes). This was the first movie that made me research where the story came from. When I found out that it came from a Daphne du Maurier novel, I began reading her stories and novels. She is still one o
  17. 1. Hitchcock opens the film The Lady Vanishes on a light-hearted note. There are comedic touches everywhere: the desk clerk's polyglot of languages ( I'm not even certain all of them were true languages), the overly loud and long cuckoo clock, the witty banter of the young women, and the wonderful dialogue of Caldicott and Charters. The music is flutes gaily playing a dance like tune. The music is reminiscent of Austrian/German style music to perhaps help establish that Banderieka is a country located in that part of Europe. The mood is definitely fun and light. On a side note, I wonder if H
  18. 1. The opening scene of The 39 Steps does seem to fit the pattern of other openings in several ways. I was reminded of the flashing To-night Golden Curls in The Lodger by the flashing Music Hall letters. This film begins in a public place as so many Hitchcock films begin. One of the differences I noticed is that the emphasis on faces we have seen in previous openings is less. We don't see faces until the show begins. 2. I am not sure if I agree with Rothman's assessment that Hitchcock is introducing us to a more innocent character than in previous openings. What could be more innocent that t
  19. 1. It seems obvious that Hitchcock is going to be more concerned with characters than plot, based on this opening scene. This is also based on the fact that that is what Hitchcock seems to always be more focused on in his films...the audience investment in the characters. Having the audience invested in the characters helps the progress and suspense of the plot. All we see and hear in this scene is a discussion of characters. Only one moment hints at a possible plot to come, when Abbott (Peter Lorre) stumbles in his words when he sees the face of the skier for the first time. 2. Abbott (Pet
  20. 1. Hitchcock uses sound design to put us into the "mind of Alice" by making all the sound in the sequence as if it is heard by Alice's ears. The volume fades and increases based on where Alice is located. An example is at the beginning of the clip, when Alice is entering the shop. Before she opens the door the voices are quiet and muffled. When she opens the door she/we can hear the speaking clearly. Then when she enters the phone booth, she/we can't hear the gossip at all, but when she opens it she/we hear the gossip loud and clear. The gossip's talk is also reduced to mumbling (except for th
  21. Great topic! One of the elements of Hitchcock films I appreciate is the humor he injects into even the most anxiety laden films. One of my favorites is Hitchcock's "cameo" in Lifeboat. Hitchcock devises a clever way to make a cameo in the confined setting of the lifeboat, by appearing in a newspaper add for "Reduco the Obesity Slayer". It makes me giggle everytime!
  22. 1. The effect of Hitchcock's POVs is especially powerful when the boys are walking toward the headmaster. Most people know that feeling of being called to the principal's office and walking to your doom. On a side note: the actor playing the headmaster does a great job of looking stern and scary. The POV of the girl walking toward the boys to accuse one makes the viewer really feel the unease of the boys. 2. I think Hitchcock used the POV shots to bring the audience into the head of the characters. The POV shots give the character's perspective much more thoroughly than an inter-title. The s
  23. 1. Hitchcock uses montage to add vitality and rhythm to the scene through pacing. The fast cuts between the static "meeting" in one room to the wild dancing and music in the other room is almost like a heart beat that begins slowly and then builds to a racing crescendo with the elongated keys superimposed with the spinning phonograph and strumming ukuleles making one almost breathless. Just like the wildly dancing girls. 2. The main technique Hitchcock uses to create a feeling of subjectivity and empathy with the main character is the superimposing of the image of his wife on the lap of the o
  24. Thank you for your clip with the different music! As I was watching the other, I wondered if this was the originally intended music score? I know the music would have been played live at the theater in 1927, and so it is difficult to know what Hitchcock would have intended, but the clip you posted had music that reminded me of later Hitchcock film scores.
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