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In Reply to: RE: What's your favorite Hitchcock film and why?.... posted by TWB on July 30, 2020 at 14:22:19
Wow! No mention so far of PSYCHO!
The original thriller ... mind-bender ... and shocker.
The direction editing and cinematograhy exquisite.
The shower scene, famously constructed of something like 62 pieces of film ... 62 shots.
The score ... the strident, shrieking rhythmic violins ... the deep bass monotonal trombones, terrible in their finality, underlining and magnifying the shower scene death, as the camera withdraws in a dizzying corkscrew from the eye of the victim (a still shot!)
It's hard to imagine today the incredible impact this film had ... how it demolished the notion that viewing film was sanitized and safe and civilized ... how it obliterated our conventional notions of normality and humanity and ushered in the modern era.
I recall there were lines around the block at its screenings, and exhortations by Hitchcock, in advertisements, not to give away the plot ... an exploration of unknown psychological territory.
No one who entered the theater left it as the same person.
Not least because of its genius-level musical score by Bernard Herrmann. But the instrumentation throughout was strings only - no trombones. I believe I read an interview with Herrmann where he mentioned that he consciously restricted himself to string sonorities (no wind or brass colorings) - it was meant as a sonic parallel to the use of black-and-white in the film itself.
Anyway, yes, a truly great film!
You GOT me!
It was, if I am correct now, deep bass violins, one short stroke, one long .. repeated, right?
Thanks for the correction!
"a great movie too"?
I still like some of the earlier ones, FOREIGN CORRESPONDENT and SABATEUR probably don't get too many votes for best ever, but I admire them both greatly.
Then, of course, there's LIFEBOAT with its unique camera work.
But I would still put PSYCHO at the top, then perhaps NORTH BY NORTHWEST, VERTIGO and REAR WINDOW.
But let me think about it, so I can change my mind.
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