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Old 23-04-2003, 19:45   #1
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The DVD Forums bi-monthly Hitchcock thread

Well, it seems Hitchcock threads pop up on these forums every couple of months or so...
I'd like to keep up the trend...soooo..


I've seen:
Rear Window
North by Northwest
Psycho
Vertigo


Next on the list: The 39 Steps. But Im not sure I'd enjoy that since its one of his 'earlies'.

Any other suggestions to keep me occupied?
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Old 23-04-2003, 20:34   #2
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'The 39 Steps' is (debatebly) Hitchcock's best British film and probably the next "classic" that you should see. Follow this with 'The Birds', 'Rebecca', 'Notorious' and 'The Lodger'. Once you've got the "important" Hitchcock's out of the way then delve into the more idiosyncratic works whether that be 'Under Capricorn', 'Spellbound', 'Rope', 'Family Plot' or 'Mr and Mrs Smith' is up to you; the thing people tend to forget about Hitch is that he tried his hand at various types of movie from the straight horror of 'Psycho' to a Sean O'Casey adaptation ('Juno and Paycock'); from Cold War thriller ('Torn Curtain') to boxing pic ('The Ring'). The great thing about Hitchcock is that there's so few truly bad pics to choose from and even these (for my money 'Torn Curtain' especially) have fantastic moments (the assassination involving the gas oven in aforemention flick).

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Old 23-04-2003, 20:38   #3
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I recommend a purchase of the 'Wrong Men And Notorious Women' criterion boxset which comes out on the 20th May and that you also head over to Play and buy Strangers On A Train.

Then after all of these watch Rope and The Birds for something a little different.
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Old 23-04-2003, 20:49   #4
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Sorry, I should have mentioned...Ive seen the Birds. IIRC it was the first Hitchcock film I saw on the TV. Got me totally hooked
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Old 23-04-2003, 21:12   #5
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I've seen (with marks out of 10 next to them):

Lodger, The - 1926 - 8/10
Rich and Strange - 1932 - 8/10
Man Who Knew Too Much, The - 1934 - 8/10
39 Steps, The - 1935 - 10/10
Secret Agent - 1936 - 8/10
Sabotage - 1936 - 8/10
Rebecca - 1940 - 10/10
Suspicion - 1941 - 10/10
Shadow of a Doubt - 1943 - 10/10
Spellbound - 1945 - 9/10
Notorious - 1946 - 10/10
Paradine Case, The - 1947 - 8/10
Rope - 1948 - 9/10
Under Capricorn - 1949 - 8/10
Rear Window - 1954 - 10/10 (his bbest film!)
To Catch a Thief - 1955 - 9/10
Man Who Knew Too Much, The - 1956 - 10/10
Vertigo - 1958 - 10/10
North By Northwest - 1959 - 10/10 (his 2nd best film!)
Pyscho - 1960 - 10/10
Birds, The - 1963 - 10/10
Marnie - 1964 - 9/10


Still got a fair few to see aswell... pretty great filmography he had!!!
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Old 24-04-2003, 08:20   #6
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I've been trying to collect and watch all the hitchcocks myself (albeit very slowly).

Currently I've got Psycho, Vertigo, North by Northwest, the man who knew too much (1934), and the 39 steps (which I have yet to watch).

I've got my eye on the new r2 set with the matching spines (although I don't really like the colours). Can anyone recommend these dvd's?, also I'm sure that they don't include all his titles just his more "critically acclaimed" ones so was wondering if anyone knew of any plans to release the others?


On the hitchcocks I've seen though, my personal favourite to date is Psycho, though its been ages since I've seen rear window and am pretty sure it was excellent. Interesting that you gave Vertigo 10/10 Yonathon, I watched this and was a little disappointed myself.
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Old 24-04-2003, 08:53   #7
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Here's my scores for the Hitchcock films I've seen. A few of them I haven't seen recently, so my scores might not be 100% accurate:

Family Plot (1976) - 7/10
Frenzy (1972) - 6/10
Topaz (1969) - 6/10
Torn Curtain (1966) - 8/10
Marnie (1964) - 7/10
The Birds (1963) - 8/10
Psycho (1960) - 10/10
North by Northwest (1959) - 9/10
Vertigo (1958) - 10/10 (best - no question!)
The Wrong Man (1956) - 7/10
The Man Who Knew Too Much (1956) - 7/10
The Trouble with Harry (1955) - 7/10
To Catch a Thief (1955) - 8/10
Rear Window (1954) - 10/10
Dial M for Murder (1954) - 8/10
I Confess (1953) - 9/10
Strangers on a Train (1951) - 9/10
Rope (1948) - 7/10
The Paradine Case (1947) - 6/10
Notorious (1946) - 10/10
Spellbound (1945) - 8/10
Lifeboat (1944) - 7/10
Shadow of a Doubt (1943) - 10/10 (second best, IMHO)
Saboteur (1942) - 7/10
Suspicion (1941) - 9/10
Mr. & Mrs. Smith (1941) - 6/10
Foreign Correspondent (1940) - 8/10
Rebecca (1940) - 9/10
The Lady Vanishes (1938) - 9/10
Young and Innocent (1937) - 7/10
Sabotage (1936) - 9/10
Secret Agent (1936) - 8/10
39 Steps, The (1935) - 9/10
The Man Who Knew Too Much (1934) - 9/10
Murder! (1930) - 7/10

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Old 24-04-2003, 09:06   #8
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Another Vote for Vertigo as the best! I enjoyed the film but found that halfway through when
that I suddenly lost interest and it seemed to lose a lot of the intrigue that kept me hooked.

I've only seen it once though and a lot of people have said that it improves on a second viewing so it looks like I might have to give it another shot.

Like your scoring system though Noel - its a lot easier to judge how good the films are if they haven't all been given 10's
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Old 24-04-2003, 10:12   #9
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Definitely improves on each viewing

It's a film you need to ponder about - ask yourself what the film would be like if Hitch didn't reveal the truth at that point but left it until the end? What does that say about Kim Novak's character? Think about all the similarities between Scottie and Gavin Elster, especially how they (mis)treat Kim Novak's character(s). Look for the similarities between the sad end of the real Carlotta and the real Madeleine (both "thrown away").

Also, exactly who is Scottie in love with - is it the real Madeleine, the fake Madeleine, Judy or Carlotta? And is the person he's in love with a "real" person, or a "made up" character?

It's always worth looking out for references to "mothers" in Hitchcock films - Midge makes an important reference to this after Scottie has his breakdown. It's also worth thinking about Scottie and Midge's relationship.

Also, bear in mind that Hitchcock liked to groom his leading ladies and would choose their haircuts and clothes for each film (Vertigo is often called Hitch's most autobiographical film).

The use of colour is important in the film - e.g. at the end when Judy appears as Madeleine, she materialises out of a green haze (in Victorian theatres, characters who were supposed to be ghosts would be lit in green).

I think as well that for the first half of the film the camera tends to only pan in one direction, and in the second half it pans the other way.

Each time I watch the film I see something new, and it feels like I'm peeling away a layer at a time
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Old 24-04-2003, 10:19   #10
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hmm.. definately seems like there could be a lot to get my teeth into - you've brought up some interesting points that have given me a bit more enthusiasm to watch it again. Maybe I'll get a bit more out of it this time
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Old 11-05-2003, 19:54   #11
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Hmmm am I the only one who didnt think much of Rear Window? Sure enough, its a nice film and I've seen in twice, but I would say Psycho and The Birds are much better.... Maybe I prefer Hitchcock's 'horror' type movies better than 'mystery and suspense'
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Old 11-05-2003, 20:16   #12
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Am I the only one who's seen Waltzes From Vienna?
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Old 11-05-2003, 20:47   #13
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After losing track off the previous hitchcock thread what version of psycho was the forums recommendation?
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Old 11-05-2003, 20:59   #14
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I think it's R1 for Psycho, as the recent R2 re-release is (wait for it) ...exactly the same as the previous featureless R2 release. Let's hear it for Universal UK!
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Old 11-05-2003, 22:57   #15
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Quote:
Originally posted by Michael Brooke
Am I the only one who's seen Waltzes From Vienna?
No... but having seen it, I can't say it inspired me to make any comment about it at all.
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Old 11-05-2003, 23:00   #16
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Can anyone convince me to give Topaz another go?

I tried watching it a couple of times when I recorded it off ITV a few years back, but gave up pretty quickly on both occasions. Just couldn't get into it at all and I found it to be the dullest Hitchcock film I'd ever (partially) seen.

Am I wrong?
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Old 12-05-2003, 06:23   #17
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You're not wrong - I'm sure I read that Hitchcock lost interest in the project at a very early stage, and also the ending wasn't the one that Hitch wanted.
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Old 12-05-2003, 08:03   #18
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Seeing as this is a Hitchcock thread, I thought I'd let people know Mr and Mrs Smith is on BBC2 tomorrow (Tuesday). More details here
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Old 12-05-2003, 08:43   #19
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Quote:
Originally posted by CrazyHorse
Can anyone convince me to give Topaz another go?

I tried watching it a couple of times when I recorded it off ITV a few years back, but gave up pretty quickly on both occasions. Just couldn't get into it at all and I found it to be the dullest Hitchcock film I'd ever (partially) seen.

Am I wrong?
It's got some very good individual sequences - the hotel room break-in, the death of the mistress - and an excellent collection of French actors. But the appalling American casting kills it, leaving an average spy thriller. I quite enjoy watching it on occasion but it's obviously one of Hitch's least effective films.

As for the endings, there are three but none of them really work properly. Hitchcock did indeed lose interest, but then he famously lost interest on most of his films once the storyboards were done.
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Old 12-05-2003, 13:21   #20
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Quote:
Originally posted by tips4tnt
I think it's R1 for Psycho, as the recent R2 re-release is (wait for it) ...exactly the same as the previous featureless R2 release. Let's hear it for Universal UK!
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