Iconic, groundbreaking interviews of Alfred Hitchcock by film critic François Truffaut—providing insight into the cinematic method, the history of film, and one of the greatest directors of all time. In Hitchcock, film critic François Truffaut presents fifty hours of interviews with Alfred Hitchcock about the whole of his vast directorial career, from his silent movies in Great Britain to his color films in Hollywood. The result is a portrait of one of the greatest directors the world has ever known, an all-round specialist who masterminded everything, from the screenplay and the photography to the editing and the soundtrack. Hitchcock discusses the inspiration behind his films and the art of creating fear and suspense, as well as giving strikingly honest assessments of his achievements and failures, his doubts and hopes. This peek into the brain of one of cinema’s greats is a must-read for all film aficionados.
This second volume of Alfred Hitchcock’s reflections on his life and work and the art of cinema contains material long out of print, not easily accessible, and in some cases forgotten or unknown. Edited by Sidney Gottlieb, this new collection of interviews, articles with the great director's byline, and “as-told-to” pieces provides an enlivening perspective on a career that spanned seven decades and transformed the history of cinema. In writings and interviews imbued with the same exuberance and originality that he brought to his films, Hitchcock ranges from accounts of his own life and experiences to provocative comments on filmmaking techniques and cinema in general. Wry, thoughtful, witty, and humorous—as well as brilliantly informative and insightful—this volume contains much valuable material that adds to our understanding and appreciation of a titan who decades after his death remains one of the most renowned and influential of all filmmakers. François Truffaut once said that Hitchcock “had given more thought to the potential of his art than any of his colleagues.” This profound contemplation of his art is superbly captured in the pieces from all periods of Hitchcock’s career gathered in this volume, which reveal fascinating details about how he envisioned and attempted to create a “pure cinema” that was entertaining, commercially successful, and artistically ambitious and innovative in an environment that did not always support this lofty goal.
The most comprehensive volume ever published on Alfred Hitchcock, covering his career and legacy as well as the broader cultural and intellectual contexts of his work. Contains thirty chapters by the leading Hitchcock scholars Covers his long career, from his earliest contributions to other directors’ silent films to his last uncompleted last film Details the enduring legacy he left to filmmakers and audiences alike
From the beginning of his career, Alfred Hitchcock wanted to be considered an artist. Although his thrillers were immensely popular, and Hitchcock himself courted reviewers, he was, for many years, regarded as no more than a master craftsman. By the 1960s, though, critics began calling him an artist of unique vision and gifts. What happened to make Hitchcock's reputation as a true innovator and singular talent? Through a close examination of Hitchcock's personal papers, scripts, production notes, publicity files, correspondence, and hundreds of British and American reviews, Robert Kapsis here traces Hitchcock's changing critical fortunes. Vertigo, for instance, was considered a flawed film when first released; today it is viewed by many as the signal achievement of a great director. According to Kapsis, this dramatic change occurred because the making of the Hitchcock legend was not solely dependent on the quality of his films. Rather, his elevation to artist was caused by a successful blending of self-promotion, sponsorship by prominent members of the film community, and, most important, changes in critical theory which for the first time allowed for the idea of director as auteur. Kapsis also examines the careers of several other filmmakers who, like Hitchcock, have managed to cross the line that separates craftsman from artist, and shows how Hitchcock's legacy and reputation shed light on the way contemporary reputations are made. In a chapter about Brian De Palma, the most reknowned thriller director since Hitchcock, Kapsis explores how Hitchcock's legacy has affected contemporary work in—and criticism of—the thriller genre. Filled with fascinating anecdotes and intriguing excerpts, and augmented by interviews with Hitchcock's associates, this thoroughly documented and engagingly written book will appeal to scholars and film enthusiasts alike. "Required reading for Hitchcock scholars...scrupulously researched, invaluable material for those who continue to ask: what made the master tick?"—Anthony Perkins