Thursday, August 11, 2016

My Ten Favorite Alfred Hitchcock Movies


Eva's Alfred Hitchcock Blogathon has begun!  This is my contribution to the event, the list of my favorite Hitch films.  Are any of these your favorites?  Does your taste coincide with me, or differ wildly?  I'd love to hear which of his films you love best!



1.  Shadow of a Doubt (1943)  A young woman (Teresa Wright) who idolizes her uncle (Joseph Cotten) slowly comes to suspect that he's not the nice, kindly man she thought, but actually a serial killer.  Yes, I love this one especially much for Joseph Cotten, as he's a pet of mine and this is one of his best performances.

2.  To Catch a Thief (1955)  French authorities ask a reformed cat burglar (Cary Grant) to help them catch another jewel thief, using the glittering assets of a lovely socialite (Grace Kelly) as bait.  This is just one gorgeous costume after another, with snazzy dialog to match.

3.  The Trouble with Harry (1955)  Harry is dead, and various people try to figure out what to do with his body.  It's kind of a screwball black comedy, if you can imagine that combination.  Daffy and delightful.

4.  North by Northwest (1959)  A normal guy (Cary Grant) gets mistaken for a spy by an Evil Bad Guy (James Mason) and goes on the run with a lovely blonde (Eva Marie Saint), who I'm sure had a connection to the plot somehow, but I can never remember what it is.  It doesn't matter, cuz this one is great fun even so.

5.  Rear Window (1954)  Wheelchair-bound photographer (James Stewart) and his girlfriend (Grace Kelly) spy on their neighbors and suspect one of them has committed murder.  But how to prove it?  Voyeuristic filmmaking at its best, it reminds us that we're just peeking at movie characters through a window too.

6.  Dial 'M' for Murder (1954)  A rich tennis champ (Ray Milland) wants his wife (Grace Kelly) to die, and each time his plan goes awry, he concocts a new one.  The real mystery for me is why she ever married him the first place, but whatever, it's tense and thrilling.

7.  Strangers on a Train (1951)  Two strangers (Farley Granger and Robert Walker) meet on a train (you could've guessed that much from the title, right?) and casually discuss the idea of killing off each others' annoying relations.  Only then one of them actually does it.  This one always gets me on the edge of my seat even though I don't particularly like any of the characters.

8.  Rebecca (1940)  A young lady (Joan Fontaine) marries a rich, older widower (Laurence Olivier) and finds herself tormented by the idea of his first wife.  Secrets and obsession at their darkest.

9. The Man Who Knew Too Much (1956)  An American couple (James Stewart and Doris Day) on holiday in Morocco accidentally get involved in a conspiracy and find not only their own lives threatened, but their child's as well.  I really just like this one for the cast, as the plot never grabs me very much.  But I do love James Stewart and Doris Day.

10. Stage Fright (1950)  A young actress (Jane Wyman) tries to prove that her friend (Richard Todd) is innocent of killing the husband of his mistress (Marlene Dietrich).  And then she starts to wonder if he's innocent after all.  This is another one I mostly love for the cast, as I have a soft spot for Richard Todd.  It's got a great plot and everything, I just mostly like it for him.


Don't forget to visit Coffee, Classics, and Craziness for all the Hitchock-themed fun over the next few days!

18 comments:

  1. I've seen all of these except for The Trouble With Harry, The Man Who Knew Too Much, and Stage Fright. Of the ones I've seen, I love them all and I really want to see all the ones I *haven't* seen. I love your 'top ten' lists, by the way, whatever the topic. :)

    ~Eva

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If you loved We're No Angels, I think you would dig The Trouble with Harry. Of the three you haven't seen, it's the one I recommend the most, for sure.

      And thanks! I have fun with them. I keep thinking I'll start duplicating lists, but so far, they've all had at least a few films not on my other lists.

      Delete
  2. I've really wanted to watch more Hitchcock movies (as I haven't seen very many) and this blogathon is only making me want to more! I've only seen North by Northwest, Rebecca, and The Man Who Knew Too Much (except it was the earlier version, from the 30s.). I actually have a DVD collection of some of his movies that I still need to watch, only they are a bunch of his earlier ones that aren't as well known. Anyway, this gives me a good bunch to look into! :D

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hayden, I didn't really get into Hitch's movies until I was in college, and even though I've seen more than 20 of them, I've got oodles more I want to see. I think my library has that same collection, and I need to start catching up via it.

      Delete
  3. The only one on this list I haven't seen is Stage Fright. I really need to watch N by N and RW again, as it's been too long since I watched them and I don't think I was quite old enough to appreciate them.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Phyl, the only one on here I've only seen once is Stage Fright. I'd like to see it again, but my library system here is woefully lacking in classics.

      N by N and RW are amazing rides, sooooo tense. Hope you can see them again! Isn't it interesting how we sometimes have to be at the right stage of life to appreciate a movie? I've been finding lately that movies I deeply disliked as a teen now entrance me.

      Delete
    2. I've been trying to rewatch films that I didn't really like the first time. I now love The Maltese Falcon (there's another one I can't think of at the moment). Still don't like An American in Paris...

      Luckily my brother has them both on dvd so it's just till I find the time to watch them :)

      Delete
    3. How intriguing! I liked "The Maltese Falcon" from the first, and it was one of my earliest noirs. Possibly the first one I saw, in fact.

      Hurrah for helpful brothers!

      Delete
  4. I've just recently started to raid my parent's little Alfred Hitchcock collection. :) So far I've seen Dial "M" For Murder and Strangers on the Train.

    Dial "M" for Murder was rather dull in my opinion, but Strangers on the Train was really good! I didn't care much for any of the characters either, until the last third when I started to like Guy.

    North by Northwest might be next on my list!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Meredith, I like your parents!

      I think Dial M took me a couple viewings to truly dig. Actually, Strangers did too -- I only started liking it a ton after moving to Danbury, CT, where they filmed the shot of the train coming around a curve into the train station. The old station there had a neat little museum with a bunch of cool memorabilia from that shoot, and I bought a copy in their gift shop, watched it again and went, "Oh! I quite dig this now!"

      North by Northwest is a fun ride!

      Delete
  5. Stage Fright has an intriguing cast! I've not seen that one yet. I very much agree with you about Shadow of a Doubt...I never get tired of watching that one and trying to get other people to watch it, too. :) Rebecca...another favorite. There are so many good ones. I wasn't as fond of Strangers of a Train, but it might have been because of what you mentioned...not being as fond of the characters.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Christina! There really are just soooo many good Hitchcock films. It was pretty hard to choose a top ten.

      Delete
  6. Interesting list! I am a big fan of Hitchcock films, but I do not believe I've seen Shadow of a Doubt. I really need watch it! And my top Hitchcock films are cliched, but Rear Window, North by Northwest, Vertigo, and Psycho are my top ones. Rear Window and Psycho especially helped mold my taste for suspense thrillers. Great post!

    -James

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, James! If I was making a "best-of" list, Psycho would be at the top, but it creeps me out too much for it to be a favorite. And I just never can like Vertigo, try though I might. But it's another that's undeniably well-crafted.

      Delete
  7. Awesome list and I'm so happy that The Man Who Knew too Much is among them, because it's my favourite one!

    My top 10 would be

    1- The Man Who Knew Too Much
    2- Strangers on a Train
    3- Shadow of a Doubt
    4- Rear Window
    5- The Lady Vanishes
    6- To Catch a Thief
    7- Rebecca
    8- Spellbound
    9- North by Northwest
    10- The Birds tied with Dial M for Murder

    (well, for the moment lol)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Virginie -- cool list! And I know what you mean about "for the moment." I feel like my list for these is fairly fluid.

      Delete
  8. I have only watched two Hitchcock movies (Rebecca, actually I slept through part of that, and North by Northwest) and didn't like either, thrillers are NOT my things. But I would like to watch more classics, so I need to pick some more to try (not super scary ones). I love the extra help these blog parties give.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Livia Rachelle -- I do like a good suspense movie, but I really dislike scary movies, which is why Psycho isn't on my list of favorites even though it's soooo well made. Kind of ditto for The Birds, which is a little too horror-y for my taste. Of these, both To Catch a Thief and The Trouble with Harry are not scary or even thriller-ish. If you've ever seen Charade, that has a very similar vibe to Thief, kind of cheeky and exciting at the same time. Harry is just black humor and not scary or suspenseful at all.

      Delete

Agree or disagree? That is the question...

(Rudeness and vulgar language will not be tolerated.)