As a teenager, he was imprisoned in the police station prison for disciplining him, on the strict orders of his father. This caused him a pathological fear of closed spaces and anxiety about imprisonment, and his influence appeared in his films that made him “the master of suspense” and “the king of horror films.”
It is the British-American director Alfred Hitchcock (1899-1980), ranked among the greatest film directors of the last century. And the philosopher who published his 2005 book, “Hitchcock as a Philosopher,” by American author Robert J. Yanal. Where his works are characterized by delving deep into the human psyche, with an amazing mixture of excitement and humor.
Hitchcock was also known for his focus on 3 main characters: an innocent man accused of committing a crime by mistake, and he must track down the real perpetrator in order to acquit himself, and the movie “North by Northwest” – 1959 as an example. The guilty woman who clashes with the protagonist, and ends up either destroying him or saving him, and the movie “Vertigo” – 1958, is an example. The psychopathic killer, who is discovered during the events, and the 1960 movie “Psycho”, is also an example.
Sir Hitchcock directed more than 50 films in his 6-decade career, and MovieMaker called him “the most influential director of all time”. Although more than 40 years have passed since his death, he is still seen as an exceptional director that may not be repeated in the history of cinema, and his books are still published in different languages around the world.
Among his prizes are the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (1968), the American Institute of Film Prize (1979), and he was awarded a knighthood in 1980.
But surprisingly, only 5 of his films have won various Oscars, of which only one won Best Picture, “Rebecca” 1940.
As for Hitchcock, he was nominated 5 times for the Academy Award for Best Director without being lucky in any of them, until it seemed that he had been ignored. Perhaps because he was technically ahead of his time, or because he seemed too vague in the content of his stories.
And Graeme Ross, artistic editor of the British newspaper The Independent, said that “denying Hitchcock an Oscar is still a stain in its history.” Without being awarded an honorary Oscar in 1968, it did not diminish that.
4 of his most important films
Rear Window, a movie directed by Hitchcock in 1954, shared by Grace Kelly with James Stewart, and was nominated for 4 Oscars. It is also a peerless piece of pure suspense-making in which Hitchcock reveals the benefit of indulging our voyeuristic tendencies in discovering a murder.
Of course, the killing scene comes as a masterpiece of indirect connotations, as the murder took place out of sight, behind curtain curtains, without hearing screams or seeing a drop of blood. It is raining, and the killer moves in and out of the apartment carrying a bag to distribute the body parts. This is the genius of the Hitchcock School in the killing scenes, which prompted critic Kim Newman to say, “If it were rated higher than 5 stars, this is one of the very few films that deserves it.”
Hitchcock continues with James Stewart, but with the participation of superstar Kim Novak, in this chilling thriller that he directed in 1958 and was nominated for two Oscars.
Film critic Peter Bradshaw described the film as “an unbearably melancholy, wonderfully shocking love story”. Hitchcock’s most disturbing masterpiece, which combined his traumatic taste with elegant genius. It takes general human emotions, such as fear, guilt, and lust, and puts them into ordinary characters, and develops them in pictures more than words. To present one of the best American films, if not the best ever.
Novak appeared more charming, and Bernard Hermann’s wonderful music starred. Hitchcock imprinted his character in each scene with revolutionary ideas, and a chilling ending.
Veteran critic Roger Ebert considers “Far North West” to be the funniest film Hitchcock directed in 1959, and was nominated for 3 Oscars, and the star was Cary Grant at his charming best.
Critic Bradshaw says, “I can’t imagine anyone now succeeding in mixing excitement, caress and laughter the way Hitchcock did in this great classic.” With a mixture of suspense, intrigue and comedy, accompanied by scary music from Bernard Hermann, indeed, this mixture is rarely deliciously served.
The events revolve around a man accused of a murder he did not commit, and then he was chased across America in several ways, including the startling nightmare sequence of chasing the crop spray plane.
Few films have profoundly changed the rules of cinema, as did the movie “Psycho”, directed by Hitchcock in 1960, about the novel of the same name by American writer Robert Bloch, which was nominated for the Best Director award.
Despite the passage of more than 60 years since its release, it is still a watershed in horror cinema, as it is the most shocking of his films. The famous murder scene in the bathtub, which is the most famous movie crime that took 45 seconds on screen, but filmed a week, is enough, and 78 different camera angles.
According to Ebert, what makes Psycho immortal is that it is directly related to our fears, our fears that we might commit a crime recklessly, our fears of the police, our fears of becoming a victim of insanity, and of course our fears of disappointment in our mothers.