Alfred Hitchcock reigns supreme perfecter of the ‘film noir’ genre. Hitchcock isn’t the only director to dabble in the dark “Psycho” drama, but he did it better than most. “I Confess” that I have a freakish predilection for Hitchcock memorabilia. A “Frenzy” for it, if you will. I don’t know if it’s the elegant black and white’ filming of a Hitchcock or the element of dark, delicious death that I love best. My “Suspicion” is that it’s a combination of plot twist, retribution and captivating story telling.
Although some Hitchcock films were retellings of famous novels, he always left his trademark on his version of the story. “Rear Window” is a thoroughly invigorating amalgam of John Michael Hayes revision of the original Cornell Woolrich story. Cornell Woolrich did for detective fiction and psychodrama literature, what Alfred Hitchcock did for movies. I love the “Notorious” Hitchcock ‘cameo’. My favorite cameos show Hitchcock juxtaposed in metaphor to the story: at the registrar’s office in “Family Plot”, in front of a poster for dieting in “Lifeboat”, in a class photo in “Dial M for Murder”. Could anything be more psychological than that? I am “Spellbound” by his use of surrealist Salvadore Dali prints. The whimsical Hitchcock intros, spoken in his odd cockney-cum-Etonian dialect delight me. I love the opening for “The Birds” which shows Hitchcock dining on roast goose. And how about Hitchcock looking at neck ties while discussing his film “Rope”? How Freudian!
My Alfred Hitchcock memorabilia collection is small, but growing. Currently, I am currently hunting “North by Northwest” to assemble copies of every Hitchcock film made. Some of the lesser known Hitchcock, like “Saboteur” and “Marnie” (with a young Sean Connery in remarkably poignant role) have risen to my top favorites. Being a cerebral person who loves literary puzzles and ‘macguffins’ (quirky plot elements and bizarre symbols), Alfred Hitchcock might have been writing just for me. He is indeed a “Man Who Knew Too Much”. I’m passionately interested in Freudian psychoanalysis and post-Victorian repression. Hitchcock explores these in many of his films; “Rebecca”, “Vertigo”, “Lifeboat” and of course, “Psycho” are wonderfully rife with repression and the psychoses.
But choosing for my passion so nebulous a subject, it also poses a challenge for amassing a memorabilia collection. I collect words, ideas and themes as much as I do images and words are more difficult to pin on a card and label. I’ve contented myself to hunting up old Alfred Hitchcock movie posters; the art is deliciously ‘film noir’ Hollywood. I’ve also secured some nice reproductions of Salvadore Dali. The most famous of which ‘La Persistance de Memoire’. I also decorate my home in late Victoriana, including dark, funereal design elements, which I’m happily sure are phallic and indicate deep-seated and dark psychoses. My favorite addition would be a Freudian analysis ‘couch’ draped in a lavish Ottoman rug and reeking of sexual symbolism.
*Note: This was written by an Associated Content contributor. Sign up here to start publishing your own movie articles.