Friday, 20 April 2012

Scene 10: The Man with a Cigar

So, a new film about Alfred Hitchcock has started filming. It's going to be about the production of Psycho and is starring Anthony Hopkins as Hitchcock. There is a photo of him in make-up, juxtaposed against one of the real Hitchcock in a Yahoo! Movies article:

I have seen two  Hitchcock films - Spellbound (1945) with Ingrid Bergman and Gregory Peck  and Rebecca (1940) with Laurence Olivier. 

But it is only until recently that I have learnt about how Hitchcock used his own obsessions in his films. Two that often appeared  were the inclusion of cold blonde women who are end up being treated badly and guilt in some form. 

Certainly Spellbound has these characteristics. Ingrid Bergman is an excellent psychiatrist who believes that love is merely biology, and therefore cold. She is hassled at the beginning of the film by her colleague about her lack of emotion and want of love. He says things that nowadays would be considered inappropriate and even kisses her, though is obviously not interested in him. This in my eyes is her 'bad treatment' - this teasing by her colleagues undermines the fact she is a good psychiatrist, because she is shown as cold, serious and  unloving; that she is somehow missing something - the feminists would surely have a field day! 

Meanwhile guilt not only appears in Spellbound, but is a major part of the story. The whole film revolves around the idea of guilt complexes.

It was a good film, but I do wish the character of Dr Petersen had been treated more seriously and given a bit more respect. 

1 comment:

  1. Excellent, I could not agree more. 'Rear Window' is more than worth a watch, it is a work of semi genius, and in film verging on brilliance.