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Iconic, groundbreaking interviews of Alfred Hitchcock by film critic François Truffaut—providing insight into the cinematic method, the history of film, and one of the greatest directors of all time. In Hitchcock, film critic François Truffaut presents fifty hours of interviews with Alfred Hitchcock about the whole of his vast directorial career, from his silent movies in Great Britain to his color films in Hollywood. The result is a portrait of one of the greatest directors the world has ever known, an all-round specialist who masterminded everything, from the screenplay and the photography to the editing and the soundtrack. Hitchcock discusses the inspiration behind his films and the art of creating fear and suspense, as well as giving strikingly honest assessments of his achievements and failures, his doubts and hopes. This peek into the brain of one of cinema’s greats is a must-read for all film aficionados.
Alfred Hitchcock's films have had an impact on scholars of all critical persuasions to the extent that the study of his works is synonymous with the study of 20th century cinema itself. These essays reflect the length and breadth of this scholarship.
This second volume of Alfred Hitchcock’s reflections on his life and work and the art of cinema contains material long out of print, not easily accessible, and in some cases forgotten or unknown. Edited by Sidney Gottlieb, this new collection of interviews, articles with the great director's byline, and "as-told-to" pieces provides an enlivening perspective on a career that spanned seven decades and transformed the history of cinema. In writings and interviews imbued with the same exuberance and originality that he brought to his films, Hitchcock ranges from accounts of his own life and experiences to provocative comments on filmmaking techniques and cinema in general. Wry, thoughtful, witty, and humorous—as well as brilliantly informative and insightful—this volume contains much valuable material that adds to our understanding and appreciation of a titan who decades after his death remains one of the most renowned and influential of all filmmakers. François Truffaut once said that Hitchcock "had given more thought to the potential of his art than any of his colleagues." This profound contemplation of his art is superbly captured in the pieces from all periods of Hitchcock’s career gathered in this volume, which reveal fascinating details about how he envisioned and attempted to create a "pure cinema" that was entertaining, commercially successful, and artistically ambitious and innovative in an environment that did not always support this lofty goal.
Forty years after his last motion picture, Alfred Hitchcock is still regarded by critics and fans alike as one of the masters of cinema. From silents of the 1920s to his final feature in 1976, the director s many films continue to entertain audiences and inspire filmmakers. In The Alfred Hitchcock Encyclopedia, film critic Stephen Whitty provides a detailed overview of the director s work. This reference volume features in-depth critical entries on each of his major films as well as biographical essays on his most frequent collaborators and discussions of significant themes in his work. For this book, Whitty draws on primary-source materials such as interviews he conducted with associates of the director including screenwriter Jay Presson Allen (Marnie), actresses Eva Marie Saint (North by Northwest) and Kim Novak (Vertigo), actor Farley Granger (Strangers on a Train), actor and producer Norman Lloyd (Saboteur), and Hitchcock s daughter Patricia (Stage Fright; Psycho) among others. Encompassing the entire range of the director s career from early influences and silent films to his decade-long television show and cameos in nearly every feature this is a comprehensive overview of cinema s ultimate showman. A detailed and lively look at the director s work, The Alfred Hitchcock Encyclopedia will be of interest to cinema-studies professors and undergraduates, as well as the master of suspense s devoted fans."
From the beginning of his career, Alfred Hitchcock wanted to be considered an artist. Although his thrillers were immensely popular, and Hitchcock himself courted reviewers, he was, for many years, regarded as no more than a master craftsman. By the 1960s, though, critics began calling him an artist of unique vision and gifts. What happened to make Hitchcock's reputation as a true innovator and singular talent? Through a close examination of Hitchcock's personal papers, scripts, production notes, publicity files, correspondence, and hundreds of British and American reviews, Robert Kapsis here traces Hitchcock's changing critical fortunes. Vertigo, for instance, was considered a flawed film when first released; today it is viewed by many as the signal achievement of a great director. According to Kapsis, this dramatic change occurred because the making of the Hitchcock legend was not solely dependent on the quality of his films. Rather, his elevation to artist was caused by a successful blending of self-promotion, sponsorship by prominent members of the film community, and, most important, changes in critical theory which for the first time allowed for the idea of director as auteur. Kapsis also examines the careers of several other filmmakers who, like Hitchcock, have managed to cross the line that separates craftsman from artist, and shows how Hitchcock's legacy and reputation shed light on the way contemporary reputations are made. In a chapter about Brian De Palma, the most reknowned thriller director since Hitchcock, Kapsis explores how Hitchcock's legacy has affected contemporary work in—and criticism of—the thriller genre. Filled with fascinating anecdotes and intriguing excerpts, and augmented by interviews with Hitchcock's associates, this thoroughly documented and engagingly written book will appeal to scholars and film enthusiasts alike. "Required reading for Hitchcock scholars...scrupulously researched, invaluable material for those who continue to ask: what made the master tick?"—Anthony Perkins
Who was Hitchcock? A fat man who played practical jokes on people? A control freak who humiliated others to make himself look better? A little boy afraid of the dark? One of the greatest storytellers of the century? He was all of these and more - twenty years after his death, he is still a household name; most people in the Western world have seen his film, and he popularised the action movie format we see every week on the cinema screen.
Nicholas Haeffner provides a comprehensive introduction to Alfred Hitchcock's major British and Hollywood films and usefully navigates the reader through a wealth of critical commentaries. One of the acknowledged giants of film, Hitchcock's prolific half-century career spanned the silent and sound eras and resulted in 53 films of which Rear Window (1954), Vertigo (1958) and Psycho (1960) are now seen as classics within the suspense, melodrama and horror genres. In contrast to previous works, which have attempted to get inside Hitchcock's mind and psychoanalyse his films, this book takes a more materialist stance. As Haeffner makes clear, Hitchcock was simultaneously a professional film maker working as part of a team in the film factories of Hollywood, a media celebrity, and an aspiring artist gifted with considerable entrepreneurial flair for marketing himself and his films. The book makes a case for locating the director's remarkable body of work within traditions of highbrow, middlebrow and lowbrow culture, appealing to different audience constituencies in a calculated strategy. The book upholds the case for taking Hitchcock's work seriously and challenges his popular reputation as a misogynist through detailed analyses of his most controversial films.
Alfred Hitchcock's American films are not only among the most admired works in world cinema, they also offer some of our most acute responses to the changing shape of American society in the 1940s, 50s, and 60s. The authors of this anthology show how famous films such as Strangers on a Train, Vertigo, North by Northwest, and Rear Window, along with more obscure ones such as Rope, The Wrong Man, and Family Plot, register the ideologies and insurgencies, the normative assumptions and the cultural alternatives, that shaped these tumultuous decades. They argue that, just as these films occupy a visual landscape defined by the grand monuments of American civic life--Mt. Rushmore, the Statue of Liberty, the United Nations--they are also marked by their preoccupation with the social mores and private practices of mid-century America. Not only are big-city and suburban life the explicit subjects of films like Rear Window and Shadow of a Doubt, so are the forms of experience that emerge within these social spaces, whether the urban voyeurism examined by the former or the intertwining of banality and violence depicted in the latter. Indeed, just about every form of American life that was achieving social power at this time--the national security state; the science and art of psychoanalysis; the privileging of the free-wheeling, improvisatory self; the postwar codification and fissuring of gender roles; road-culture and its ancillary creation, the motel--is given detailed, critical, and mordant examination in Hitchcocks films. The Hitchcock who emerges is not merely the inspired technician and psychological excavator that critics of the past two generations have justly hailed; he is also a cultural critic of remarkable insight and undeniable prescience.
The most comprehensive volume ever published on Alfred Hitchcock, covering his career and legacy as well as the broader cultural and intellectual contexts of his work. Contains thirty chapters by the leading Hitchcock scholars Covers his long career, from his earliest contributions to other directors’ silent films to his last uncompleted last film Details the enduring legacy he left to filmmakers and audiences alike