What was your first experience with Alfred Hitchcock? For me, I remember watching Psycho in eighth grade and having my mind blown. His movies felt like they were from the future. He knew how to put you on the edge of your seat and command your attention. Studying his films always pays off, so that's what we're going to do now.
Hitchcock rewrote the rules of cinema to achieve fame and fortune in Hollywood. Now, check out this vintage CBS Sunday Morning where correspondent Seth Doane looks back on the life and career of the director, and talks with stars Eva Marie Saint (North by Northwest) and Tippi Hedren (The Birds), horror director John Carpenter, and film professor Jack Sullivan about Hitchcock’s innovative talents and unique legacy.
Alfred Hitchcock's Directing Artistry Explained
Will a director ever walk out and introduce their film before it happens again? Will we ever have a personality so chilling and charming that we don't write it off as cliche or corny? As Eva Marie Saint said, "There are some people who are unable to be copied, they're like a unique gem..."
Hitchcock is often sighted by modern directors, but is there anyone like him? He was so capable of carrying so many tones across movies. He was the master of suspense, but he nailed comedy, action, and drama at a level that felt almost unreachable.
But we need to probably stop trying to make another Hitchcock appear and start just loving the art he left behind.
Hitch was a storyteller and a wonderful character unto himself. Someone seen as larger than life, a legend walking on set. There will probably be no one like him again, and he'd rather have it that way himself.
Along with many other skills, Hitch was the master of the psychology of his characters. We get cinematography that matches their experience, from the drunk driving in North by Northwest to the loopy shots in Vertigo.
Digging through vulnerability was Hitchcock's specialty. Remember, he was a shopkeeper's son, someone who saw customers come and go all the time. He studied people and brought out the best and worst in his characters.
Of course, many of his characters were blonde women. The Hitchcock blonde set the standard for femme fatales of the era. He created a standard for actresses and provided some of his best roles to them. This obsession created an overbearing style that drove some away, though it made fans of others.
Hitchcock was a master of many different ideas, but his artistry truly came from figuring out how people tick. His characters and villains all had compelling motivations.
He also constantly kept the audience in mind. What would make them scream? What would make them shout? His appreciation for entertainment, thrills, and for laughing at the morbid is why we remember him today.
We love Hitch because he loved us too.
Got a favorite Hitchcock memory or piece of artistry? Let us know in the comments!
Source: CBS Sunday Morning