Alfred Joseph Hitchcock was born August 13, 1899, Leytonstone,
England, and died in 1980 in Los Angeles, USA, of liver and heart
problems. He went to Ignatius College in London, to the School of
Engineering and Navigation, and then to the University of London. He
started his film career in 1919 illustrating title cards for silent
films at Paramount 's Famous Players-Laskey Studio in London. There he
learned scripting, editing and art direction and rose to assistant
director in 1922. By 1925, he had directed his first finished film, "
The Pleasure Garden" shot in Munich. His breakthrough film, "The
Lodger", came a year later. Alfred Hitchcock directed over 50 films in
total, including "Vertigo" (1958), "Psycho" (1960) and "The Birds"
(1963), and they earned him the title "the master of suspense".
Hitchcock the Auteur
Hitchcock achieved the title "master of suspense" particularly through
his mastery of the technical means to build and maintain suspense. He
used innovative camerawork (viewpoints and movements), editing
techniques, soundtrack, lighting and mise en scene. Because of this
unique style, Hitchcock is considered to be an auteur. "Auteur" is a
French word meaning "author" and was first used to describe a film
director by Francois Truffaut, a French film theorist. The term refers
to a film director with solid technique, a well-defined vision of the
world and a degree of control over production. It is really a way of
saying that a film has a particular director's signature on it.
Psycho - an overview
"Psycho" was such a re...
... middle of paper ...
... first two examples also reflect back guilt. The sense of danger builds
suspense even though none of the examples leads to anything.
There are other ways in which Hitchcock broke with convention. He
shows the leading actress semi-nude in a bedroom after just having had
sex. Later, he shows her in the shower and finally he eliminates her,
one of the main characters, only 47 minutes into the film.
I think Alfred Hitchcock deserves his status as an auteur because he
introduced a distinctive style to cinema and his unconventional
approach revolutionised horror films. His innovative camerawork
(viewpoints and movements), editing techniques, soundtrack, lighting
and mise en scene are what differentiated Hitchcock's films from those
of earlier directors. Also, his films used intricate plots.
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