The path through destruction that they have walked, guided along by Hitchcock much like Virgil guided Dante in the circles of Hell, is what people remember most after watching Rear Window, Psycho, and Vertigo.
About 50 years ago Hitchcock followed his artistic masterpiece with two of the most important movies ever to emerge from Hollywood. Two very different pictures, each was to chart a course for an entire genre.
Typical of Hitchcock, he does not provide answers in Vertigo and The Birds, rather, he demonstrates the inherent dangers of living with -- yet denying -- the dark psychic forces that control our lives from deep withing our subconscious minds.
To what degree should a teacher help a student develop taste? Hitchcock stands as one of hundreds of artists whose work educators might use to explore questions of art and the classroom itself with their students.
In this sixth installment of our overview of Hitchcock’s oeuvre, we take a look at his most divisive period -- a string of wildly inconsistent material ranging from masterpieces to films we didn’t even bother reviewing.
Three films of the mid-1940s found Hitchcock in an experimental mode. One takes place entirely in a small boat, another explores the idea of the psychedelic, and the third stretches out into the territory of film noir, while animating the post-war sense of global interconnectedness that presaged the Cold War.
Although Hitchcock made several films expressing his opposition to the Nazis, viewing these films leads to the question: Where was any mention of the Jews who were so profoundly affected by the Nazis and WWII?
As the war in Europe raged, Hitchcock remained in the relative safety of his adopted home far from the bombs that rocked his home country, but Hitch put together a series of fascinating movies dealing with themes of betrayal, paranoia, deceit, and the creeping horror of doubt.
New to Hollywood, it didn’t take long for Hitchcock to master his surroundings, winning the Best Picture Oscar with his first American film. Then, it was on to a series of iffy studio experiments, including perhaps the most bizarre entry in his oeuvre, a screwball comedy starring Carole Lombard!