Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Hitchcock (2012)



“You may call me Hitch. Hold the Cock.”

I remember the first time I ever sat through a Hitchcock film like it was yesterday. Rebecca was the film. I can remember buying that along with Notorious and Spellbound. I can remember seeing the scene where Maxim tells his new wife the night his first wife died and the camera pans the movements of the woman. That was the moment I saw why Hitchcock is considered a genius. Ever since then Alfred Hitchcock has been my favorite director from the way he films his scenes, casts his characters, and chooses his stories.
            You never talk about Alfred Hitchcock without Psycho coming into the conversation. Psycho is by far the film the director is most known for. Book after book has been written about the film especially of the famous shower scene. Psycho is not my favorite Hitchcock film by far but I do appreciate what it did for film and do understand its impact at the time and now.
            It is only fitting that a movie should be made about the making of the famous 1960 film. Simply titled Hitchcock, this movie starts after North by Northwest has become a hug success and now the director does not know what kind of story he wants to make. He wants to make something different but the studios keep offering him spy movies like his current success. In his office Hitchcock comes across the story of Ed Gein a serial killer from Wisconsin who killed countless women and kept his dead mother in the house. Hitchcock read the book Psycho that is based off of Ed’s murders and immediately wants to turn the story into a movie.
            Of course Paramount hates the idea since it is a horror movie that will be considered too violent. Hitchcock makes his way around the studio system saying that he will finance the movie himself.
            The movie goes into his private life during the making of the film and his interactions with Janet Leigh and Vera Miles.
            Anthony Hopkins was too perfect to describe as the director. Helen Mirren plays Hitchcock’s wife Alma Reville. Now Alma Reville had as much a hand in her husband’s films as he did. She wrote several of the scripts for many of his famous films including Psycho but she never put her name in the credits. In the movie Alma is supposed to have been writing a script with another man which made Hitchcock jealous. I am not sure how much that is really true. I can imagine Hitchcock being a hard man to deal with and live with but it felt as if a lot of their interactions were dramatized. I can also imagine that it must have been hard living with him when he was so infatuated with his blonde leading ladies especially Grace Kelly. Scarlet Johansson I was little worried how she would pull of playing Janet Leigh but she was great. I was so mad to see Jessica Beal as Vera Miles. First off let me say that I am in no way a fan of Jessica Beal I think she is annoying and a bad actress. I have seen Vera Miles in several films and think she is a good actress. I really like Miles in Psycho. So that being said I think you know full well my feelings on Jessica Beal playing Vera Miles. Also had another issue with this portrayal of Miles- before making Psycho Miles had made a film where she had to shave her head so she wore a blonde wig for the role of Lila Crane. In the movie they had Miles with long brown hair and had her wear the wig when filming. Now this film was almost stolen by James D’Arcy playing Anthony Perkins. He was so spot on it was scary! I have to mention that Toni Collette is in this movie as the director’s secretary. I had no idea she was in it and I barely recognized she was great.
            Hitchcock was a very good movie. I am actually looking forward to it being out on DVD. I am extremely interested to know what Alfred Hitchcock and Alma Reville’s daughter Pat Hitchcock thought of the movie. After all she did have a small part in Psycho she was the other secretary where Marion worked.