Hitchcock Powerpoint

Alfred Hitchcock
1899 - 1980
Born in London, moved to California in
Known for well-made SUSPENSE thrillers!
Started in film as a title designer. Later
became art director then director of films
for Lasky studio.
Neo-Hitchcockian thrillers look the way
they do today because of Hitchcock.
Thriller is a broad genre of literature,
film, and television programming that
uses suspense, tension and excitement as
the main elements. Thrillers heavily
stimulate the viewer's moods giving them
a high level of anticipation, ultraheightened expectation, uncertainty,
surprise, anxiety and/or terror. Thriller
films tend to be adrenaline-rushing,
gritty, rousing and fast-paced. Literary
devices such as red herrings, plot twists
and cliffhangers are used extensively. A
thriller is a villain-driven plot, whereby he
or she presents obstacles that the
protagonist must overcome. (Wikipedia)
Hitchock is an auteur. Auteur—a filmmaker whose individual
style and complete control over all elements of production give
a film its personal and unique stamp.
• Appears in cameos in his films, usually in the beginning so
the audience doesn’t get too distracted looking for him and
lose focus on the story.
• Bathrooms are often a plot device. What?!
• Liked using a shot to feature a female’s hairstyle.
• Themes often of “wrong man” or “mistaken identity.”
• Icy Blonde women…harsh blondes. Sexually enticing but frigid—
cold emotion.
• Motifs of lost or assumed identities.
• He was always in a suit on film sets. At the end of a shoot,
would toss a teacup behind his back.
• “In order to create suspense in his films, he would alternate between
different shots to extend cinematic time. His driving sequences were
also shot in this particular way. They would typically alternate b/w the
character’s p-o-v while driving and a close-up shot of those inside car
from opposite direction. This technique kept the viewer ‘inside’ the car
and made any danger encountered more richly felt.”
• Uses city as backdrop. Lots of shots of significant city/town scenes.
• MacGuffin—object of device which drive the plot and are of great
interest but prove insignificant and are forgotten by the audience once
they’ve served their purpose.
• Name often appears before film titles.
• Filmed in b/w. Too gory in color. Made film for less than $1
• First American film to show a toilet flushing onscreen. Realism.
• Movie split in two parts.
• Cast didn’t know the ending of the film until H. was ready to shoot
• Trailers to create suspense. Once the movie began no one was
permitted to enter later. Psycho Trailer
• Drivers often get out of the car on the passenger side. H. wanted
to shoot w/out moving the camera, or have to follow the actor, or
have the actor walk b/w the car and the camera.
• Hitchcockian shot/Zolly shot—Investigator falls down the stairs, camera
pulls back and zooms forward or vice-versa. Zoom Dolly Shot
• Shower scene—7 days to film, 70 camera setups, 90 splices, 45 seconds
of footage, heated water for Janet Leigh. Chocolate syrup for blood.
Knife sound on melon. Janet Leigh’s parts were covered. You never see
her parts and the knife never actually cuts her in the scene.
• References to birds—Marion CRANE, Norman’s hobby is stuffing birds,
refers to her as she “eats like a bird.” H’s next film, The Birds.
• Sinking car scene, faulty hydraulics. Anthony Perkins fear to the film
crew is real but stayed in character.
• The novel the film was based was inspired by the serial killer Ed Gein.
Other films inspired by him Deranged, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre,
Silence of the Lambs.

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