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Top 5 Hitchcock films


konway87
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Hey, Konway -- Frank Grimes said he is going to post about interesting

scenes in The Birds soon. So I am just waiting for it.

 

Sorry for the delay. Melanie pulled off the side of the road to read Rebecca. I'm

gonna try some lines on her to see if I can get her going again.

 

I enjoyed reading your comments on The Paradine Case and Suspicion.

You and I exchanged some interesting posts on The Paradine Case this past

summer. And I'm not sure anyone has ever written as much about Under

Capricorn as you and I did last year.

 

Hi, ChiO -- I should watch it again, too, and continue to until I figure out who

portrays Rebecca. It was probably Gloria Grahame. See, FrankieG, your opinion is

the one that really counts.

 

Gloria Grahame gets a mention on a Hitch thread and I wasn't the culprit! Could you

see Timothy Carey playing Martin Landau's role in North by Northwest? Would

that spice that film up for ya?

 

I'm really starting to feel lonely. I never thought that I'd feel compelled to defend

Citizen Kane as my favorite film, or read a post calling Killer of Sheep (one of my

Top 10 faves) "independent junk", or sense that my integrity is being questioned

(not on this Board) by listing Tourneur's Stars in My Crown as my favorite Western.

 

All of us Kane fans initially get suckered into defending it, but you will soon realize, it's

a never-ending battle over nothing.

 

Such a price to pay for not worshipping at the feet of Hitchcock.

 

Miss G may rough you up for that one, but I won't. She tends to be quite snippy if you

don't like what she likes. I should know since I rarely like a thing she likes.

 

But, hey, I really enjoyed The Informer.

 

Kiss up! You'd never catch me doing such a thing. If I like a Ford film, I choose not to

talk about it. :P

 

 

Hiya, Miss G(ilded Cage) -- Brilliant photos!

 

Who reads novels on holidays? Girls who are bored with the same stale lines.

 

So you travel alone then, eh? That makes sense. I can't imagine anyone wanting

to go on a "holiday" with a boring, snippy bookworm.

 

Here's some fresh lines for you:

 

How'd you like to buy me dinner?

 

What's your friend's name?

 

How much?

 

Here is where I disagree with most auteurists---why does a director have to limit

himself to a particular genre, style, story type or anything in particular? I think Hitch

can ONLY be considered great because he did so much more than "thrillers".

 

Hitch couldn't put his own complete stamp on Rebecca. He himself was the

one who was limited. Rebecca just doesn't feel like Hitch to me in terms of

story, not look. It's a very good film, but I think it could have been even better if

Hitch were allowed to tinker. But the reason he didn't get this opportunity is because

of what you said in a previous post: the book was extremely popular at the time and

Selznick wanted the film to be as faithful to the source as possible. That's

understandable. But this handcuffed Hitch.

 

one of the worst films ever made is on at 5:45 P.M. today. My VCR committed

suicide just at the mention of taping the film, Laziest Gal in Town.

 

I see the disease in that camp is terminal. It's called Schnickelitis.

 

:D

 

Frank Grimes said he is going to post about interesting scenes in The Birds soon.

So I am just waiting for it.

 

Yes, we're all waiting...and waiting....and waiting...

 

Only three "waitings." I've got a few more "waitings" to use up, right?

 

If I don't get forced out a window by a secret Schnickel lover, I'll get to The Birds tonight.

 

rebecca1-1.jpg

 

rebecca2-1.jpg

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I don't know if anyone noticed this. The color of James Stewart's tie and color of Kim Novak's clothes are same.

 

Here is the link to Kim Novak's clothes.

http://hitchcock.dreamhosters.com/hitch/1000/Vertigo%20(1958'>http://hitchcock.dreamhosters.com/hitch/1000/Vertigo%20(1958'>http://hitchcock.dreamhosters.com/hitch/1000/Vertigo%20(1958'>http://hitchcock.dreamhosters.com/hitch/1000/Vertigo%20(1958)/0438.jpg

 

Here is the link to James Stewart's tie.

http://hitchcock.dreamhosters.com/hitch/1000/Vertigo%20(1958)/0505.jpg

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Hey, Konway -- I don't think you were around when I totally lost my mind and

spent hours talking (composing) about Vertigo this past Fall. I still don't know

how I got hoodwinked into that one. I guess my heart was in it then. Those were the

days.

 

If you are interested in reading my thoughts on Vertigo, here's the link:

 

http://forums.tcm.com/jive/tcm/thread.jspa?threadID=114811&start=105&tstart=45

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All of them are Great Informations, Frank Grimes. I didn't know that "Ferguson" is Scottish. I totally agree with you that the primary reason why Jimmy Stewart's character is known as "John" and "Scottie" is to show that he also has two personalities just as Kim Novak's character has "Judy" and "Madeleine".

 

I never noticed Scottie and his brown suit. I also agree with you that "green" represents life or the living.

 

I think Color "Grey" connects the relationship between Madeleine and Judy.

 

"I believe "blue" represents guilt, which is a major theme in the film." - I can see what you mean. Also in Under Capricorn, the surrounding is filled with blue color when Lady Henrietta is introduced. And her mind is filled with guilt too.

 

I think "Blue" is also a color that "haunts." In Suspicion, Cary Grant is compared to a "Blue Ghost." Color "Blue" is also mentioned when Hitchcock talks to Truffaut about Mary Rose.

 

In Hitchcock/Truffaut Interview, Hitchcock mentions this about Mary Rose "Whenever she moved, there would be no shadow on the wall, only a blue light. You would have to create the impression of photographing a presence rather than a body." This is mentioned in Page 232.

 

While reading your brilliant post about Vertigo, I also noticed this dialogue " The Chinese say that once you've saved a person's life you're responsible for it forever; so I'm committed. I have to know." I think this is also mentioned in Hitchcock's Rich and Strange. But I don't remember exactly where in the film.

 

The idea of Vertigo's title design by Saul Bass came from Hitchcock's Rich and Strange. This is mentioned in Hitchcock/Truffaut Book Page 56.

 

I learned lots of things from your post about Vertigo. Thanks for telling me about it.

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Hi, Konway -- All of them are Great Informations, Frank Grimes.

 

Thanks!

 

I think Color "Grey" connects the relationship between Madeleine and Judy.

 

That may be the case.

 

"I believe "blue" represents guilt, which is a major theme in the film." - I can see

what you mean. Also in Under Capricorn, the surrounding is filled with blue color

when Lady Henrietta is introduced. And her mind is filled with guilt too.

 

Excellent observation.

 

I think "Blue" is also a color that "haunts." In Suspicion, Cary Grant is compared

to a "Blue Ghost." Color "Blue" is also mentioned when Hitchcock talks to Truffaut

about Mary Rose.

 

In Hitchcock/Truffaut Interview, Hitchcock mentions this about Mary Rose "Whenever

she moved, there would be no shadow on the wall, only a blue light. You would have

to create the impression of photographing a presence rather than a body." This is

mentioned in Page 232.

 

I'll have to watch Suspicion again. Your "Blue Ghost" points on this thread look

to have great validity.

 

While reading your brilliant post about Vertigo, I also noticed this dialogue " The

Chinese say that once you've saved a person's life you're responsible for it forever; so

I'm committed. I have to know." I think this is also mentioned in Hitchcock's Rich and

Strange. But I don't remember exactly where in the film.

 

If I find a little extra time, I'll attempt to track that down.

 

The idea of Vertigo's title design by Saul Bass came from Hitchcock's Rich and Strange.

This is mentioned in Hitchcock/Truffaut Book Page 56.

 

I didn't know this. I like Rich and Strange. It's a very unique Hitchcock film.

 

I learned lots of things from your post about Vertigo. Thanks for telling me about it.

 

Thanks again, and you're welcome.

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Back to The Birds.

 

The arrival of Melanie Daniels (Tippi Hedren) at Bodega Bay produces one of my favorite

images from The Birds:

 

thebirds2.jpg

 

I just love the juxtaposition with this shot. In the foreground, we see Melanie getting

out of her luxurious, convertible sports car in her extravagant fur coat. In the

background, we see a shop that serves the community as both a post office and

a general merchandise store. As you can see to the right, the "folks" are staring at

Melanie. I especially like the elderly lady who is carrying two bags of groceries. This

is something Melanie really hasn't done in her life. She's always had others do things

for her.

 

At this point in the film, Melanie still feels she is in control and that everything is on

her terms. She's thinking selfishly. Will her train of thought change?

 

Melanie enters the shop and asks the shopkeeper if he knows where Mitch Brenner

lives. The shopkeeper informs her that he lives across the bay. This leads to this

interesting exhange of dialogue:

 

thebirds3.jpg

 

thebirds4.jpg

 

Melanie is at first worried to hear "Brenners," plural. Is Mitch married? Did she drive 60

miles to give lovebirds to a married man? No, Mitch is not married.

 

We are next clued in on Mitch's situation:

 

thebirds5.jpg

 

thebirds6.jpg

 

thebirds7.jpg

 

Mitch is a grown man but he's still rather childlike... emotionally. He's a mama's boy.

 

Melanie asks the shopkeeper how to get down to the Brenner's house and he tells her

to take the main road, which will lead her to their front door. Melanie doesn't want the

front door because she wants to surprise Mitch. Surprises are wonderful ways to spark

love. The shopkeeper tells her she could rent a boat and cross the bay.

 

thebirds8.jpg

 

Melanie then asks for the name of Mitch's sister and both the shopkeeper and the

postmaster both give her the wrong answer. One says "Alice" and the other says

"Lois." (I'm not sure if there is a deeper meaning to this or just a needed plot point

to get Melanie to Annie's.) This prompts Melanie to say she needs to know her

exact name. The shopkeeper then tells Melanie there's one person in Bodega Bay

that would know for certain: Annie Hayworth (Suzanne Pleshette). We're soon going

to find out why, too.

 

thebirds10.jpg

 

We're now off to a very important scene. Melanie drives by the schoolhouse in a bit of

foreshadowing by Hitch.

 

thebirds12.jpg

 

I believe the following introduction is exceptionally vital to the film:

 

thebirds13.jpg

 

thebirds14.jpg

 

thebirds15.jpg

 

I feel Melanie's reply of "me" has two meanings and both are very important in the

film. The first meaning of "me" is that Melanie is selfish. Everything is always about

her. She thinks self first all the time.

 

The other meaning of "me" for me is a lot darker and foreboding. The word "me" to

Annie is deathly. For you see, Melanie is the woman Annie has dreaded for years.

Melanie is Mitch's woman. She's finally arrived.

 

I also believe Annie's reply of, "who's me," to be very important. Annie is the opposite

of Melanie. She's not thinking "me," she's thinking "Mitch." She's sacrificed her life for

the man she loves. Ohhh, yes, Melanie's journey is only just begun.

 

Melanie and Annie start to become acquainted with each other:

 

Melanie Daniels: Miss Hayworth?

 

Annie Hayworth: Yes.

 

Melanie Daniels: I'm Melanie Daniels, I'm sorry to bother you, but --

 

Annie Hayworth: Yes?

 

Melanie Daniels: The man at the post office sent me. He said you could tell me the

name of the little Brenner girl.

 

Annie Hayworth: Cathy?

 

Melanie Daniels: The one who lives in the white house across the bay.

 

Annie Hayworth: Yes, that's the one. Cathy Brenner.

 

Melanie Daniels: He seemed sure it was either Alice or Lois.

 

Annie Hayworth: Which is why the mail never gets delivered to the right place in town.

I'm sorry. Smoke? (She offers a cigarette to Melanie.)

 

Melanie Daniels: Thank you. (She accepts the offer.)

 

Annie Hayworth: Did, uh... you want to see Cathy about something?

 

Melanie Daniels: Well, not exactly.

 

Annie Hayworth: Oh. Are you a friend of Mitch's?

 

Melanie Daniels: No, not really.

 

 

Annie is quick to pick up Melanie's interest in Mitch.

 

thebirds17.jpg

 

thebirds18.jpg

 

thebirds19.jpg

 

thebirds20.jpg

 

I love that Annie looks right into the eyes of Melanie and then she smiles. She knows

what's up. Melanie acknowledges Annie's smile with a smirk. She also knows what's up.

 

Annie Hayworth: You know, I've been wanting a cigarette for the last 20 minutes. I just

couldn't convince myself to stop. This tilling of the soil can become compulsive, you know.

 

Melanie Daniels: It's a very pretty garden.

 

Annie's words are haunting. I take her words to mean she's been wanting to move on

but she couldn't convince herself to do so. Mitch was in her system too deep. She

continued to maintain her emotional Mitch garden.

 

Annie Hayworth: Oh, thank you. Well, it's something to do in your spare time. There's

a lot of spare time in Bodega Bay. Are, uh, you planning on staying long?

 

Melanie Daniels: No, just a few hours.

 

Annie Hayworth: Oh, then you're leaving after you see Cathy.

 

Melanie Daniels: Well, something like that. Oh, I'm sorry. I don't mean to sound so

mysterious.

 

Annie Hayworth: Actually, it's none of my business.

 

Melanie Daniels: Well, I better be on my way. Thank you very much.

 

Annie Hayworth: Not at all.

 

I really like Annie's reply of, "not at all," to Melanie's, "thank you," because she is using

a negative word, "not."

 

Here's a little visual test for you.

 

thebirds21.jpg

 

thebirds22.jpg

 

thebirds23.jpg

 

thebirds24.jpg

 

thebirds25.jpg

 

Did you notice that Annie did not look at Melanie when she asked a question she

was afraid to know the answer for? She couldn't "face" the truth. When Annie

hears a hopeful reply from Melanie, she turns and faces her. Annie even attempts

to dissuade Melanie from staying with the line, "there's a lot of spare time in Bodega

Bay."

 

As Melanie and Annie leave the porch to go to Melanie's car, you see another interesting juxtaposition:

 

thebirds32.jpg

 

Melanie is clean and dressed gorgeously while Annie is dirty and wearing gardening

clothes. Heels compared to sneakers. A dress compared to slacks. A fur coat

compared to a sweater. Make-up compared to dirt smudges. Have I mentioned

that Miss Daniels has just begun her journey?

 

The parting exchange between Melanie and Annie is a tough one for Annie.

 

Annie Hayworth: Did you drive up from San Francisco by the coast road?

 

Melanie Daniels: Yes.

 

Annie Hayworth: Nice drive.

 

Melanie Daniels: It's very beautiful.

 

We will in time find out that Annie took the same drive as Melanie. And when she did,

it was definitely nice.

 

Annie Hayworth: Is that where you met Mitch?

 

Melanie Daniels: Yes.

 

Annie Hayworth: I guess that's where everyone meets Mitch.

 

Melanie Daniels: Now you sound a bit mysterious, Miss Hayworth.

 

Annie also met Mitch in San Francisco. I also believe she knows she's off his list now

that she's in Bodega Bay. They won't "meet" again.

 

Annie Hayworth: Do I? I don't mean to. Actually, I'm an open book, I'm afraid. Or

rather a closed one. (She then notices the lovebirds on the passenger side of the car).

Oh, pretty. What are they?

 

Melanie Daniels: Lovebirds.

 

Annie Hayworth: I see. Good luck, Miss Daniels.

 

Melanie Daniels: Thank you.

 

A closed book, indeed.

 

 

thebirds26.jpg

 

thebirds27.jpg

 

thebirds28.jpg

 

thebirds29.jpg

 

thebirds30.jpg

 

thebirds1.jpg

 

This scene-closing shot is very sad and tragic to me:

 

thebirds31.jpg

 

Annie lives in a white picket-fence house next to a schoolhouse. She's a married

woman with children in her mind AND in her setting. Her dream world sits and waits

and hopes for Mitch... but he's never going to show. And she greatly fears this while

also knowing it.

 

I will pick up with my analysis at a later date. Maybe later tonight. Maybe.

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Very interesting observations about some of my favorite scenes. I have always been curious about the significance of that last image of Annie by the mailbox as Melanie drives away. It is a very sad feeling you get, and the color red is so strong---almost violent, like Annie's death.

 

All of this illustrates why I find all the scenarios leading up to the climax of the bird attacks so interesting and in fact, while the special effects remain jaw dropping no matter how many times I see them, the real reason for my affection for this film is the [people] in it and what they do, how they change. Do you think Mitch changes at all? I see him get a little frustrated when things go haywire and his mother becomes hysterical but beyond that he manages to keep it together I think.

 

And it's about time. Maybe tonight we can get the next installment, Mr. Snail.

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Again A Great Post, Frank Grimes. I liked many of the things you explained. For Example, you clearly explained Melanie's line "Who is me?" I see lot of things I haven't noticed while watching the film The Birds. For Example, I noticed Annie did not look at Melanie when she asked the question. I noticed something in common when I read this. - "Annie also met Mitch in San Francisco. I also believe she knows she's off his list now that she's in Bodega Bay. They won't "meet" again. "

 

I noticed "San Francisco." Saint Francis is the patron saint of "Birds." This also explains the middle name of Norman Bates. Norman Francis Bates is the full name of Norman. And his hobby is taxidermy (Stuffing Birds).

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Hi, Miss Demanding! -- Very interesting observations about some of my

favorite scenes.

 

In a Melanie Daniels voice: "thank you."

 

I have always been curious about the significance of that last image of Annie by

the mailbox as Melanie drives away. It is a very sad feeling you get, and the color

red is so strong---almost violent, like Annie's death.

 

I haven't really put much thought into the color schemes of The Birds yet, but I

do believe red may represent violence. I think you are on to something, Smart Girl.

The shopkeeper even tells Melanie that Annie has a red mailbox.

 

All of this illustrates why I find all the scenarios leading up to the climax of the bird

attacks so interesting and in fact, while the special effects remain jaw dropping no

matter how many times I see them, the real reason for my affection for this film is

the people in it and what they do, how they change.

 

No need for me to continue then. :P

 

Do you think Mitch changes at all? I see him get a little frustrated when things

go haywire and his mother becomes hysterical but beyond that he manages to

keep it together I think.

 

Do you wanna know something? I don't know yet. This is the first time I have ever

analyzed The Birds. It was the same for Vertigo. This is all fresh to

me. And if I get to analyzing films like The Shop Around the Corner,

My Darling Clementine, The Misfits, The Fountainhead, etc.,

it would be the same. You are merely getting my own opinions with The Birds.

 

My current feeling is that Mitch is still Mitch, but I may change my mind. You

definitely know who is headed for the change, Miss Manhattan. There are a few

critical moments on the way in regards to that.

 

And it's about time.

 

Sorry. I believe in looooooooooong courtships.

 

Maybe tonight we can get the next installment, Mr. Snail.

 

Maybe not. Mr. Snail was pleasantly distracted. I have a feeling I'll have the time

to post the "next installment" late tonight. Ahhh, Melanie Daniels. She's got some

learnin' to do.

 

Hey, Konway! -- Again A Great Post, Frank Grimes. I liked many of the

things you explained.

 

Thanks! That means a lot coming from you since I consider you to be the most

knowledgeable Hitch poster on the board.

 

For Example, you clearly explained Melanie's line "Who is me?" I see lot of things

I haven't noticed while watching the film The Birds. For Example, I noticed Annie did

not look at Melanie when she asked the question.

 

The Melanie-Annie scenes are my favorite in the film. Annie Hayworth is so very

unique to a Hitch film. I've been trying to think of a woman like her in Hitch pic.

I actually believe Suzanne Pleshette comes off a little like Ava Garnder in her

portrayal of Annie. I just love Annie.

 

The other big Melanie-Annie scene is quite revealing.

 

I noticed "San Francisco." Saint Francis is the patron saint of "Birds." This also

explains the middle name of Norman Bates. Norman Francis Bates is the full

name of Norman. And his hobby is taxidermy (Stuffing Birds).

 

See, that's the brilliant stuff I'd never come up with. I'm not familiar with too many

saints. :)

 

I hope to jump in the boat with Melanie late tonight. It's back to the game of love.

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I forgot to mention something about Under Capricorn. Relationship between Sydney Carton and Charles Adare. Both of their past lives were filled with emptiness. Charles Adare only mentions his past once. "I spent most of my life warding off boredom." This is mentioned in the famous sunset scene. Of Course, the ending makes both characters honorable heroes. I thought James Bridie and Hume Cronyn were clever writers.

 

Hume Cronyn was also a script consultant for The Birds (1963).

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I don't know about that. Hume Cronyn may have worked in scripting process of North by Northwest. But I am not sure.

 

I agree with you that Hume Cronyn and Jessica Tandy were close friends of Hitchcock. I always consider Under Capricorn as one of Hitchcock's finest films. When I read many of the reviews, I was surprised with bad reviews from Critics.

 

One Critic called Under Capricorn "A rare bad movie from Master of Suspense." Hitchcock made a different film. And the Critics call it a bad film, just because it isn't a thriller.

 

I think this is the same problem Ernst Lubitsch. I believe Lubitsch made an antiwar film called Broken Lullaby. But he didn't get enough appreciation to make more movies like this. So he went back to Comedy.

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Frank,

 

If you try to tell me one more time you don't know nothin' about the movies, I am going to have to smack you.

 

Your insightful analysis of both Vertigo and The Birds (not to mention Cat People and the Curse of the Cat People, reveals, that unlikely Prissy, you know a great deal about what you speak.

 

And what's this I hear about you've not seen Rio Grande?

 

Frank, if ever there was a film that depicted womanly longings this is it. All one has to do is but gaze upon Maureen O'Hara's desire to reconcile with John Wayne to learn enough to fill a book.

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