This new edition of A Hitchcock Reader aims to preserve what has been so satisfying and successful in the first edition: a comprehensive anthology that may be used as a critical text in introductory or advanced film courses, while also satisfying Hitchcock scholars by representing the rich variety of critical responses to the director's films over the years. a total of 20 of Hitchcock?s films are discussed in depth - many others are considered in passing section introductions by the editors that contextualize the essays and the films they discuss well-researched bibliographic references, which will allow readers to broaden the scope of their study of Alfred Hitchcock
This provocative study traces Alfred Hitchcock's long directorial career from Victorianism to postmodernism. Paula Cohen considers a sampling of Hitchcock's best films -- Shadow of a Doubt, Rear Window, Vertigo, Psycho -- as well as some of his more uneven ones -- Rope, The Wrong Man, Topaz -- and makes connections between his evolution as a filmmaker and trends in the larger society. Drawing on a number of methodologies including feminism, psychoanalysis, and family systems, the author provides an insightful look at the paradox of a Victorian-style gentleman who evolved into one of the leading masters of the modern medium of film. Cohen sees Hitchcock's films as developing, in part, as a masculine response to the domestic, psychological novels that had appealed primarily to women during the Victorian era. His career, she argues, can be seen as an attempt to balance "the two faces of Victorianism": the masculine legacy of law and hierarchy and the feminine legacy of feeling and imagination. Also central to her thesis is the Victorian model of the nuclear family and its permutations, especially the father-daughter dyad. She postulates a fundamental dynamic in Hitchcock's films, what she calls a "daughter's effect," and relates it to the social role of the family as an institution and to Hitchcock's own relationship with his daughter, Patricia, who appeared in three of his films. Cohen argues that Hitchcock's films reflect his Victorian legacy and serve as a map for ideological trends. She charts his development from his British period through his classic Hollywood years into his later phase, tracing a conceptual evolution that corresponds to an evolution in cultural identity -- one that builds on a Victorian inheritance and ultimately discards it.
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.
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
One is ravished by the density of insights into cinematic questions....Truffaut performed a tour de force of tact in getting this ordinarily guarded man to open up as he had never done before (and never would again)....If the 1967 Hitchcock/Truffaut can now be seen as something of a classic, this revised version is even better. Phillip Lopate The New York Times Book Review
In the process of providing the most extensive analysis of Alfred Hitchcock’s Rear Window to date, John Fawell also dismantles many myths and clichés about Hitchcock, particularly in regard to his attitude toward women. Although Rear Window masquerades quite successfully as a piece of light entertainment, Fawell demonstrates just how complex the film really is. It is a film in which Hitchcock, the consummate virtuoso, was in full command of his technique. One of Hitchcock’s favorite films, Rear Window offered the ideal venue for the great director to fully use the tricks and ideas he acquired over his previous three decades of filmmaking. Yet technique alone did not make this classic film great; one of Hitchcock’s most personal films, Rear Window is characterized by great depth of feeling. It offers glimpses of a sensibility at odds with the image Hitchcock created for himself—that of the grand ghoul of cinema who mocks his audience with a slick and sadistic style. Though Hitchcock is often labeled a misanthrope and misogynist, Fawell finds evidence in Rear Window of a sympathy for the loneliness that leads to voyeurism and crime, as well as an empathy for the film’s women. Fawell emphasizesa more feeling, humane spirit than either Hitchcock’s critics have granted him or Hitchcock himself admitted to, and does so in a manner of interest to film scholars and general readers alike.
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.
Film scholar Murray Pomerance presents a series of fascinating meditations on six films directed by the legendary Alfred Hitchcock, a master of the cinema. Two of the films are extraordinarily famous and have been seen--and misunderstood--countless times: North by Northwest and Vertigo. Two others, Marnie and Torn Curtain, have been mostly disregarded by viewers and critics or considered to be colossal mistakes, while two others, Spellbound and I Confess, have received almost no critical attention at all. In An Eye for Hitchcock, these movies are seen in a striking new way. Pomerance takes us deep into the structure of Hitchcock's vision and his screen architecture, revealing key elements that have never been written about before. Pomerance also clearly reveals the link between Hitchcock's work and a wide range of thinkers and artists in other fields, thereby offering viewers of Hitchcock's films the rare opportunity to see them in an entirely new light.