Favorite Trailers That Make The Cut!ūüé¨

Image result for movie theatre screen image

I was working on a post the other day and the TV show Nothing but Trailers was on in the background. It got me thinking about some of my all-time favorites and what constitutes a great trailer.

First of all, it can’t just be a series of scenes from the movie. That really irks me! What’s the point of me going if you’ve already given me your best shots? Just lazy.

An excellent trailer peaks your curiosity¬†gets your heart-stirring and demands that you’re first in line to see it. An incredible trailer gives you minimal information but builds the anticipation with atmospheric music, punctuation¬†shots, and an ending that¬†elicits the core emotion of the film.

This is the criteria I applied to the following trailers and is the basis for them being some of the most memorable.

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Number One has got to be the 1979¬†sci-fi classic – Alien. “In space, no one can hear you scream.”

Starring Sigourney¬†Weaver, director Ridley Scott scared the crap out of me and the little boy sitting in front of me at the theater. Oh, and to make matters worse, I was pregnant at the time. Yikes! (if you’ve seen it you understand if you haven’t, what?? You must!) And my girl Sigourney Weaver showed the world what a badass woman in space looks like.

Image result for alien movie

Sigourney Weaver

This is the epitome of an incredible trailer. Little bits and moments and truly haunting music. My heart was racing and I had no idea of what I’d just seen.

The visuals were outstanding! There was absolutely¬†nothing familiar in the images coming off the screen.¬†The Alien and its accompanying elements were designed by Swiss surrealist artist H. R. Giger. (I don’t know how he slept with those images in his head) The film¬†received both critical acclaim and box office success, receiving an Academy Award for Best Visual Effects.

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Number Two is the sci-fi thriller –The Dark Knight¬†(2008) – “Why So Serious?”

First of all, Heath Ledger. Second of all, Heath Ledger!! Even in the trailer, his intensity shines thru. He draws you in and you’re compelled to see more. His Oscar-winning¬†performance was incredible and the most talked about that year.

Ledger¬†almost made a¬†complete sweep of over twenty awards for acting, including the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor, Screen Actors Guild Award for Best Supporting Actor, the Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor ‚Äď Motion Picture, and the BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role.

Heath Ledger

Unfortunately, we lost him, but his genius as The Joker lives on. Starring Christian Bale as the caped crusader and directed by Christopher Nolan, when I saw this trailer I knew where I was going to be on opening night. Totally lived up to the hype.

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And, Now Presenting… “The Master of Suspense”!

In 1960, Alfred Hitchcock shocked the world with his groundbreaking thriller. Unsuspecting moviegoers stood in lines that wrapped around the block with no one being allowed admittance after the movie began. Intensifying the anticipation, each patron’s directive was to NOT reveal the ending.

Watch this legend pull on your tension string. From the “Master of Suspense”, Sir Alfred Hitchcock’s¬†– Psycho (1960)¬†“…she just goes a little mad sometimes.”

This trailer shows Alfred Hitchcock taught the world just how horror is done. Fits all my criteria for an incredible movie trailer and then some. Starring Janet Leigh and Anthony Perkins, my heart is racing right now re-visiting this magnificent piece of cinema.

Hitchcock, Alfred 02.jpg

Sir Alfred Hitchcock – (13 August 1899 ‚Äď 29 April 1980)

Hitch’s stylistic trademarks include the use of camera movement that mimics a person’s gaze,¬†forcing viewers to engage in a form of voyeurism.¬†In addition, he framed shots to maximize anxiety, fear, or empathy¬†and used innovative forms of film editing. (Wikipedia)

To quote me, “An incredible trailer gives you minimal information but builds the anticipation with atmospheric music, punctuation¬†shots, and an ending that¬†elicits the core emotion of the film.”

An unquestionable classic!

alfredhitchcockpsycho

◊◊◊◊◊◊◊◊◊

Now that I’ve shared some of my faves, I’d love to hear some of yours! ūüėé

 

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“God bless us, everyone.” Quotable Closing Lines

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I can appreciate there are those who don’t like Top 10 lists but I tend to enjoy them because of getting to find out the favorites of fellow film lovers. Also, reminiscing about my best-loved movies that perhaps I haven’t thought about for a while.

 

 

Closing lines can serve as punctuation, the¬†cherry on top. They can also, wrap up the film. One-liners¬†that recall the movie all over again. Often times these are the quotes we remember most and become representative of the movie’s theme.

There are way too many movies to choose from so these are just a sampling that made this particular list. I love the Top 2 but as I was watching so many other films came to mind.

Please, let me know in the comments some of your best quotes. I’m looking forward to reading them.

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Spoiler Alert: I make it a point to never reveal a film’s ending because it’s a matter of courtesy. Don’t spoil the movie!

 

Although not closing, a few choice quotes:

Charlie Chaplin – The Great Dictator (1940)

Peter Lorre – Maltese Falcon (1941)

 

Colin Clive -Frankenstein (1931)

 

Wallace Shawn – Princess Bride (1987)

 

Paul Reubens- Pee-Wee’s Big Adventure (1985)

 

Clevon Little – Blazing Saddles (1974)

Favorite Trailers That Make The Cut!ūüé¨

Image result for movie theatre screen image

I was working on a post the other day and the TV show Nothing but Trailers was on in the background. It got me thinking about some of my all-time favorites and what constitutes a great trailer.

First of all, it can’t just be a series of scenes from the movie. That really irks me! What’s the point of me going if you’ve already given me your best shots? Just lazy.

An excellent trailer peaks your curiosity¬†gets your heart stirring and demands that you’re first in line to see it. An incredible trailer gives you minimal information but builds the anticipation with atmospheric music, punctuation¬†shots, and an ending that¬†elicits the core emotion of the film.

This is the criteria I applied to the following trailers and is the basis for them being some of the most memorable.

◊◊◊◊◊◊

Number One has got to be the 1979¬†sci-fi classic – Alien. “In space, no one can hear you scream.”

Starring Sigourney¬†Weaver, director Ridley Scott scared the crap out of me and the little boy sitting in front of me at the theater. Oh, and to make matters worse, I was pregnant at the time. Yikes! (if you’ve seen it you understand, if you haven’t, what?? You must!) And my girl Sigourney Weaver showed the world what a badass woman in space looks like.

Image result for alien movie

Sigourney Weaver

This is the epitome of an incredible trailer. Little bits and moments and truly haunting music. My heart was racing and I had no idea of what I’d just seen.

The visuals were outstanding! There was absolutely¬†nothing familiar in the images coming off the screen.¬†The Alien and its accompanying elements were designed by Swiss surrealist artist H. R. Giger. (I don’t know how he slept with those images in his head) The film¬†received both critical acclaim and box office success, receiving an Academy Award for Best Visual Effects.

◊◊◊◊◊◊

Number Two is the sci-fi thriller –The Dark Knight¬†(2008) – “Why So Serious?”

First of all, Heath Ledger. Second of all, Heath Ledger!! Even in the trailer, his intensity shines thru. He draws you in and you’re compelled to see more. His Oscar-winning¬†performance was incredible and the most talked about that year.

Ledger¬†almost made a¬†complete sweep of over twenty awards for acting, including the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor, Screen Actors Guild Award for Best Supporting Actor, the Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor ‚Äď Motion Picture, and the BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role.

Heath Ledger

Unfortunately, we lost him, but his genius as The Joker lives on. Starring Christian Bale as the caped crusader and directed by Christopher Nolan, when I saw this trailer I knew where I was going to be on opening night. Totally lived up to the hype.

◊◊◊◊◊◊

Last, but certainly not least of this compilation is the original master of suspense, Alfred Hitchcock’s¬†– Psycho (1960)¬†“…she just goes a little mad sometimes.”

This trailer shows Alfred Hitchcock taught the world just how horror is done. Fits every criterion for an incredible movie trailer and then some. Starring Janet Leigh and Anthony Perkins, my heart is racing right now re-visiting this magnificent piece of cinema.

Hitchcock, Alfred 02.jpg

Sir Alfred Hitchcock – (13 August 1899 ‚Äď 29 April 1980)

Hitch’s stylistic trademarks include the use of camera movement that mimics a person’s gaze,¬†forcing viewers to engage in a form of voyeurism.¬†In addition, he framed shots to maximize anxiety, fear, or empathy¬†and used innovative forms of film editing. (Wikipedia)

To quote me, “An incredible trailer gives you minimal information but builds the anticipation with atmospheric music, punctuation¬†shots, and an ending that¬†elicits the core emotion of the film.”

An unquestionable classic!

alfredhitchcockpsycho

◊◊◊◊◊◊◊◊◊

Now that I’ve shared some of my faves, I’d love to hear some of yours! ūüėé

 

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My Top 3 Picks for Brilliant Movie Endings!

movietitle

The Usual Suspects

Psycho

Seven

Spoiler Alert! 

*As a matter of principal, I never reveal movie endings. So, please don’t divulge¬†these.

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Number 3

Seven (movie) poster.jpg

Seven (1995)

Okay, I’m a firm believer that not being shown everything can sometimes be more powerful than exposing it. We didn’t need to see the contents of the box at the end of the movie because the tension and reaction from both Morgan Freeman and Brad Pitt were palpable. Wow!

This outstanding, psychological thriller was directed by David Fincher and stars Brad Pitt, Morgan Freeman, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Kevin Spacey. It was nominated for Best Film Editing at the 68th Academy Awards but lost out to Apollo 13.

The entire movie was one of those peek through your fingers experiences. Just when you thought you’d seen it all, the next shot was more horrific than the first. What a roller coaster ride!

◊◊◊

Number 2

psycho poster

Psycho (1960)

Believe it or not, I saw this Hitchcock classic in the theater when it first came out. I was 5-years-old and I’m still a little paranoid going into the bathroom!

Image result for psycho hitchcock

Starring Anthony Perkins, and Janet Leigh, this classic horror-thriller is pure genius and a prime example why Alfred Hitchcock is the “Master of Suspense.” You believe he’s telling one story and suddenly everything is flipped on its ear. Who kills off the lead 1/3 way through the film and gets you to feel sympathetic toward the killer? I still can only watch Psycho during the daytime.

Initially, Hitch was not supported in the making of this little gem to the chagrin¬†of “The Master.” Theater-goer lines were wrapped around the block hyped by a “No Admittance”¬†policy after the start of the movie.

hitchcockpsycho

The ending shot still haunts me and remains an amazing ending to one disturbing flick!

 

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My number 1 choice for brilliant movie endings is without a doubt!

 

The Usual Suspects (1995)

Usual suspects poster

The name Keyser Söze will forever be synonymous with one of the greatest cons ever perpetrated in cinema history.

This crime thriller masterpiece was directed by Bryan Singer and written by Christopher McQuarrie. It stars Kevin Spacey, Gabriel Byrne, Benicio del Toro, Kevin Pollak, Chazz Palminteri, and Stephen Baldwin.

Kevin Spacey’s portrayal of Roger “Verbal” Kint is compelling and flawless! He’s placed in numerous “best villain” lists over the years, including AFI’s 100 Years…100 Heroes & Villains. Spacey won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor, turning him from a character actor into a star.

I have so many favorite scenes, it’s hard to pick just one. However, besides the ending, this rates. I crack up just thinking about it, so posting this was a hilarious endeavor!

One of the best parts of watching this film has got to be re-watching it to look back at all the elements of this fantastic set-up!

Love it, Love it, Love it!!

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These are just a few of the myriad of essential movies to ponder.

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Let me know some of your favorites in the comments.

 

 

Let’s Get This Party Started!

The opening title sequence of a movie should invoke the tone of the film, grab your attention and create the anticipation of what’s to come. I recently did a post on most memorable film trailers and now I’m offering up some of the most memorable opening titles.

Vertigo (1958)

 

Alfred Hitchcock is the “master of suspense” for a myriad of reasons and this opening sequence created by Saul Bass, graphic designer, and Academy Award-winning filmmaker¬†is an epic example of setting the tone and anticipation of what’s to come.

Hitchcock hints at the relationship between James Stewart and Kim Novak by opening on James Stewart’s name above Kim Novak’s lips transitioning into her eyes and the swirling sensation of vertigo. In addition, the beautifully haunting theme music of Bernard Herrmann perfectly sets the suspenseful mood of the film.

Casino Royale (2006)

The poster shows Daniel Craig as James Bond, wearing a business suit with a loose tie and holding a gun. Behind him is a silhouette of a woman showing a building with a sign reading "Casino Royale" and a dark grey Aston Martin DBS below the building. At the bottom left of the image is the title "Casino Royale"¬†‚Äď both "O"s stand above each other, and below them is a 7 with a trigger and gun barrel, forming Bond's codename: "Agent 007"¬†‚Äď and the credits.

It’s always dicey when you try to recast an iconic treasure like James Bond. Sean Connery was the only¬†Bond I recognized (although Pierce Brosnan¬†definitely held his own) so, when Daniel Craig was announced to fill Connery’s spot, I was definitely skeptical but quickly became a huge Daniel Craig fan. I think he did a great job of bringing just the right amount of attitude, style, and hotness necessary to carry on the franchise.

Casino Royale introduces James Bond before he holds his license to kill through his transition into his 007 status. The opening theme song by Chris Cornell (then-former lead singer of Soundgarden and former lead singer of Audioslave), adds the perfect punctuation with his title song – “You Know My Name!”

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Official poster shows the titular hero Deadpool standing in front of the viewers, with hugging his hands, and donning his traditional black and red suit and mask, and the film's name, credits and billing below him.

One of the coolest, funniest, most irreverent sequences I think I’ve ever seen are the opening titles for one of my new favorite movies, “Deadpool” (2016).

I call Deadpool the anti-Marvel film because its tone goes against the grain of a typical Marvel movie. Ryan Reynolds was hil-a-ri-ous! Although there was plenty of action, Reynold’s deadpan comedy changed the attitude of the film and was priceless. Talked friends into watching who aren’t Marvel fans and after it was over, loved it and said it was totally not what they expected. If you haven’t, give it a chance. I think you’ll enjoy it.

These are just of few of my favorites. Let me know in the comments those that make your list.

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Nothing But My Favorite Trailersūüé¨

Image result for movie theatre screen image

I was working on a post the other day and the TV show Nothing but Trailers was on in the background. It got me thinking about some of my all-time favorites and what constitutes a great trailer.

First of all, it can’t just be a series of scenes from the movie. That really irks me! What’s the point of me going if you’ve already given me your best shots? Just lazy.

An excellent trailer peaks your curiosity¬†gets your heart stirring and demands that you’re first in line to see it. An incredible trailer gives you minimal information but builds the anticipation with atmospheric music, punctuation¬†shots, and an ending that¬†elicits the core emotion of the film.

This is the criteria I applied to the following trailers and is the basis for them being some of the most memorable.

◊◊◊◊◊◊

Number One has got to be the 1979¬†sci-fi classic – Alien. “In space, no one can hear you scream.”

Starring Sigourney¬†Weaver, director Ridley Scott scared the crap out of me and the little boy sitting in front of me at the theater. Oh, and to make matters worse, I was pregnant at the time. Yikes! (if you’ve seen it you understand, if you haven’t, what?? You must!) And my girl Sigourney Weaver showed the world what a badass woman in space looks like.

Image result for alien movie

Sigourney Weaver

This is the epitome of an incredible trailer. Little bits and moments and truly haunting music. My heart was racing and I had no idea of what I’d just seen.

The visuals were outstanding! There was absolutely¬†nothing familiar in the images coming off the screen.¬†The Alien and its accompanying elements were designed by Swiss surrealist artist H. R. Giger. (I don’t know how he slept with those images in his head) The film¬†received both critical acclaim and box office success, receiving an Academy Award for Best Visual Effects.

◊◊◊◊◊◊

Number Two is the sci-fi thriller –The Dark Knight¬†(2008) – “Why So Serious?”

First of all, Heath Ledger. Second of all, Heath Ledger!! Even in the trailer, his intensity shines thru. He draws you in and you’re compelled to see more. His Oscar-winning¬†performance was incredible and the most talked about that year.

Ledger¬†almost made a¬†complete sweep of over twenty awards for acting, including the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor, Screen Actors Guild Award for Best Supporting Actor, the Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor ‚Äď Motion Picture, and the BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role.

Heath Ledger

Unfortunately, we lost him, but his genius as The Joker lives on. Starring Christian Bale as the caped crusader and directed by Christopher Nolan, when I saw this trailer I knew where I was going to be on opening night. Totally lived up to the hype.

◊◊◊◊◊◊

Last, but certainly not least of this compilation is the original master of suspense, Alfred Hitchcock’s¬†– Psycho (1960)¬†“…she just goes a little mad sometimes.”

This trailer shows Alfred Hitchcock taught the world just how horror is done. Fits every criterion for an incredible movie trailer and then some. Starring Janet Leigh and Anthony Perkins, my heart is racing right now re-visiting this magnificent piece of cinema.

Hitchcock, Alfred 02.jpg

Sir Alfred Hitchcock – (13 August 1899 ‚Äď 29 April 1980)

Hitch’s stylistic trademarks include the use of camera movement that mimics a person’s gaze,¬†forcing viewers to engage in a form of voyeurism.¬†In addition, he framed shots to maximize anxiety, fear, or empathy¬†and used innovative forms of film editing. (Wikipedia)

To quote me, “An incredible trailer gives you minimal information but builds the anticipation with atmospheric music, punctuation¬†shots, and an ending that¬†elicits the core emotion of the film.”

An unquestionable classic!

alfredhitchcockpsycho

◊◊◊◊◊◊◊◊◊

Now that I’ve shared some of my faves, I’d love to hear some of yours! ūüėé

 

Image result for movie film images

 

 

 

The Man with the “Touch” – Ernst Lubitsch ūüé¨ūüôĆūüé•

Ernst Lubitsch

Ernst Lubitsch (January 29, 1892 ‚Äď November 30, 1947)

Keeping with the “Faces Behind the Camera” theme I’m spotlighting the saucy, bedroom comedies director¬†Ernst Lubitsch and his famous “Lubitsch Touch”. This moniker was bestowed on him by other legendary filmmakers including Billy Wilder who was featured in the previous “Faces Behind the Camera” post. The phrase is used to describe the unique style and cinematic trademarks of director Ernst Lubitsch.

Hailed by the likes of Alfred Hitchcock (my other favorite director), Francois Truffaut and Orson Welles as a giant among filmmakers, Ernst Lubitsch was a preeminent figure in the history of cinema who directed some of Hollywood’s most sophisticated and enduring comedies.

Hollywood Sign

More than a great director of actors and action, he added his own personal signature – the “Lubitsch touch” – to all his work creating a sense of style and grace that was rarely duplicated on the screen.

After making a name as a director in his native Germany, Lubitsch was brought over at the behest of silent film star Mary Pickford to direct her in “Rosita” (1923). From there, he made comedies like “The Marriage Circle” (1924) and “Kiss Me Again” (1925), as well as dramas like “The Patriot” (1925). But with the advent of sound, the cigar-chomping director’s career took off with his fascination with a new genre, the musical comedy, and he began displaying his famed Lubitsch touch with classics like “Monte Carlo” (1930) and “One Hour with You” (1932).

He directed his first bona fide masterpiece, “Trouble in Paradise” (1932) later described as “truly amoral” by critic David Thomson (a British film critic and historian). The cynical comedy was popular both with critics and with audiences. But it was a project that could only have been made before the enforcement of the Production Code. After 1935, “Trouble in Paradise” was withdrawn from circulation. It was not seen again until 1968. The film was never available on videocassette and only became available on DVD in 2003.

Lubitsch later hit his stride full force with “Bluebeard’s Eighth Wife” (1938), “Ninotchka” (1939) co-written by Billy Wilder¬†and “The Shop Around the Corner” (1940). Lubitsch reached great artistic heights with “To Be or Not to Be” (1942) and “Heaven Can Wait” (1943) before dying mid-career in 1947, leaving behind a legacy virtually unmatched by a filmmaker before or since.

In 1946, he received an Honorary Academy Award for his distinguished contributions to the art of the motion picture. He was also nominated three times for Best Director.

Lubitsch died of a heart attack on November 30, 1947, in Hollywood,¬†and was buried at Glendale Forest Lawn in Glendale, CA.¬†Leaving Lubitsch’s funeral, Billy Wilder ruefully said, “No more Lubitsch.” Lubitsch has a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 7040 Hollywood Blvd.

 

 

Turner Classic Movies – Host Robert Osbourne’s 20th Anniversary

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Those of you who read my posts on a regular basis know I’m a big time fan of classic movies. My interests include all genres and typically those from legendary directors like Alfred Hitchcock and Billy Wilder. Melodrama and classic Sci-Fi rate high on my favorite movie lists and the best television source I’ve discovered and my go to for “all things film” is the Turner Classic Movies channel.

 

 

As program host, Robert Osbourne brings a style and wealth of cinema knowledge respected by both enthusiasts and Hollywood legends alike. Osbourne is a graduate of the University of Washington’s School of Journalism and has over 30 years experience writing about film and Hollywood. In 1977, he started his career as a columnist for The Hollywood Reporter and the following year published 50 Years of Oscar which won him the 1979 National Film Book award. He served as President of the Los Angeles Film Critics Association¬†in 1981, a position he would be re-elected to for the next two years. In 1994, Ted Turner created Turner Classic Movies as a competitor to American Movie Classics (now known as AMC). Osborne was selected as the host of their nightly broadcasts as well as special one-on-one “Private Screening” interviews and the weekly feature “The Essentials.”

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This month we celebrate Mr. Osbourne’s 20th Anniversary with a tribute to his memories and moments of sharing rare, golden Hollywood era and restored film classics from the TCM vault. For a retrospective of Mr. Osbourne’s beginnings as host, films and Hollywood legends that have visited and shared their stories, tune in on September 15th at 5:30am (I know, way too early – I’m going to DVR the special:) on your local cable channel or visit online at: http://www.tcm.com for complete details and the upcoming TCM schedule.

 

TCM 20 years of classic movies

TCM’s library of films spans several decades of cinema and includes thousands of film titles. The channel has licensing agreements with such studios as Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer and Warner Bros, Entertainment. They also have movie licensing rights with Universal Studios, Paramount, 20th Century Fox, Walt Disney Studios, Selznick International Pictures, Sony Pictures Entertainment, Studio Canal and Janus Films. With such an extensive collection, we are treated to program features such as “31 Days of Oscar”, “Star of the Month”, “Silent Sunday Night”, “TCM Remembers”and numerous original programming broadcast specials.

 

 

Twenty-Four Seven there’s always new movies to discover, old titles to revisit and an extensive background of cinema and film history. You can’t go wrong. Turner Classic Movies – For Movie Lovers Everywhere!

 

 

TCM logo

 

 

Master of Suspense?

Master of Suspense

Sir Alfred Joseph Hitchcock ¬†(August 13, 1899¬†‚Äď April 29, ¬†1980)

Sir Alfred Joseph Hitchcock aka “Master of Suspense” was a British born director known for his mastery of the suspense and psychological thriller. ¬†He was an innovator using film editing (cuts) as the basis to construct a film. He poked, stabbed and forced us to face our fears, obsessions and¬†compulsions.

Hitch is one of my favorite directors because of his fearlessness. He used a¬†voyeuristic¬†style and cuts to let you see inside the heads of his leading characters. Rear Window (1954) is a classic example of his style as the audience becomes the voyeur along with James Stewart’s character. We go along with Hitch and peer through the windows of Stewart’s neighbors and cross a line we otherwise wouldn’t.

In Psycho (1960) we peer through the peephole with “Norman Bates” (Anthony Perkins) and end up rooting for this very troubled individual. Not allowing patrons to enter the theater after Psycho started was a great gimmick. His most fearless move was what¬†occurred¬†in the first 45 minutes of the film. Now that’s risk and genius!

In 1992, the US Library of Congress deemed the film “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant” and selected it for preservation in the National Film Registry.

Now, meet Hitchcock as he takes us through the Bates Motel and the events that occurred. This is Sir Alfred in all his shocking glory.

Although Hitchcock is legendary for his film editing genius, Rope (1948 ) proved to be his ultimate experiment. Instead of using film editing, he would shoot the movie in one long sequence. Stopping only to change the camera role. Like filming a play. Each role of camera film holds about 10-12 minutes of film.

The set was insane with flying walls and furniture. Jimmy Stewart once remarked about placing his drink on a table, turning back around and not only was the drink gone but the table it was sitting on. Everyone had to be on their mark and not drop a line because if anything went wrong they had to do everything  all over again. Hitchcock said the film just about killed him!

A Little Hitchcock History:

His first directing assignment, Number 13, began in 1922 but unfortunately wasn’t finished due to financial issues. His big break came in 1927 with the completion of his thriller The Lodger: A Story of the London Fog. ¬†The plot revolved around a search for a Jack the Ripper type of serial killer and mistaken identity. Hitchcock’s first thriller is ripe with mood and the German Expressionist influence. A taste of things to come in Hitch’s¬†repertoire, it was a commercial and critical success.

Hitchcock-The_Lodger_1927_Poster

Hitchcock’s tenth film, Blackmail was released in 1929 and considered¬†Britain’s¬†first talkie. It also starts his usage of landmarks as a tradition and appears in the longest cameo of all his films.

Hitchcock-Blackmail_1929_Poster

The 39 Steps (1935) is widely considered the best of Hitchcock’s early films and made him a star in the U.S. ¬†It also branded Hitch’s obsession with the cold blonde, sophisticated leading lady which Grace Kelly would come to epitomize. Then there’s the infamous¬†“MacGuffin.” ¬†A¬†reoccurring¬†plot device that actually had no real significance¬†to the story-line. A decoy. Just another Hitch thing.

The 39 Steps

Alfred Hitchcock’s films were produced in¬†Britain until in 1939. When¬†David O. Selznick signed him to a seven year contract, Hitch relocated to the United States with his wife Alma Reville (his closest collaborator) and his daughter Patricia Hitchcock.

Alma Reville was an accomplished director, writer, editor and producer in Britain before she met Hitch while working¬†¬†at¬†Paramount‘sFamous Players-Lasky studio in London, during the early 1920s. Patricia Hitchcock appeared in several of her dad’s films including: Psycho, Strangers on a Train and Stage Fright.

Rebecca (1940) was Hitchcock’s first American film. It won the Academy Award for Best Picture and Hitchcock was nominated for Best Director but did not win. In fact, although nominated five times, he would never be afforded that honor.

Alfred Hitchcock  became an American citizen in 1956 and was a multiple nominee and winner of a number of prestigious awards. Hithcock was the recipient of  two Golden Globes, eight Laurel Awards, and five lifetime achievement awards including the first BAFTA Academy Fellowship Award.

Hitchcock received a knighthood in 1980 when he was appointed a Knight Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (KBE) by Queen Elizabeth II.

What’s your quintessential¬†Hitchcock film?

  • Stage Fright (1950)
  • Saboteur (1942)
  • Strangers on a Train (1951)
  • The Birds (1963)
  • Spellbound (1945)
  • Shadow of a Doubt (1943)
  • Rebecca (1940)
  • Foreign Correspondent (1940)
  • The 39 Steps (1935)
  • Rope (1948)
  • Vertigo (1958)

Not here? Voice Your choice in the comments.

Check out Alfred Hitchcock’s substantial catalog.

The quintessential “Master of Suspense.”

Boo! Don’t Turn Off the Lights

halloween boo 1

Happy Halloween!

 

In anticipation of the big day, I thought I’d share some of my Halloween Day viewing quirks. “Boo, Don’t Turn off the Lights” reveals what films I can watch only while it’s still light outside.

My top 2 are Psycho (1960) and Halloween (1978). If you haven’t experienced them you should and here’s why:

 

Psycho (1960)

Psycho_(1960)

Directed by the “Master of Suspense”, Sir Alfred Hitchcock, it turned the audience perception of a movie plot on its head. There were lines wrapped around the block and absolutely NO ADMISSION after the movie began. Sir Alfred, such a tease. For more on Al, please click here. A previous post tribute.

 

Starring Anthony Perkins and Janet Leigh, the screenplay is by Joseph Stefano and based on the 1959 novel of the same name by Robert Bloch. To fully appreciate the creepy effect of the film understand that the character of Norman Bates is loosely inspired by the crimes of Wisconsin murderer and grave robber Ed Gein.

Norman Bates

Norman Bates (Anthony Perkins)

I can’t give anything away, but the shower scene is legendary and a reason to watch with the lights on!

Janet Leigh Marion

Marion Crane (Janet Leigh)

 

Halloween (1978)

Halloween_1978

Directed by John Carpenter and the debut of¬†Jamie Lee Curtis (Janet Leigh’s daughter), this film is inspired by and born from the masterwork Psycho (1960) bringing a fresh, 1978 twist on the horror genre. Void of a lot of blood and gore the focus becomes a child’s question: “What’s the “boogeyman?”¬†and the response, “I believe that was.”

OMG, I add extra lighting when watching this definitive Halloween classic!

 

The unrelenting Michael Myers character is the scariest psycho of all time! 

Michael myers2007

This quote sums up Michael:

Dr. Sam Loomis:¬†(Donald Pleasence)¬†I met him, fifteen years ago; I was told there was nothing left; no reason, no conscience, no understanding; and even the most rudimentary sense of life or death, of good or evil, right or wrong. I met this six-year-old child, with this blank, pale, emotionless face, and the blackest eyes… the devil’s eyes. I spent eight years trying to reach him, and then another seven trying to keep him locked up because I realized that what was living behind that boy’s eyes was purely and simply… evil.

Michael Myers young

6-year-old Michael Myers

The cinematic significance of this film is unlike other slasher movies of the day, the heroine is intelligent and continually devising ways to get away from the killer. Jamie Lee as Laurie is sweet, compassionate and determined to save the kids she’s babysitting and herself from death and live through Halloween night.

 

Shout out to the first horror “Scream Queen! (for you trivia buffs check-out Wes Craven’s Scream (1996) for a movie reference). Halloween (1978) was the film’s inspiration.

Laurie strong

Laurie Strode (Jamie Lee Curtis)

 

Halloween’s opening sequence is disturbing and reason for exclaiming:

 

Boo! Don’t Turn Off the Lights!