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So as you know, I stopped writing lengthy reviews on this site this year, keeping the blog as more of a film diary of sorts.  Lo and behold,...

Saturday, November 06, 2010

Hitchcock Fest Wrap-Up, Part II

Alright, so we're wrapping up this month-long Hitchcock Fest with a rundown from the Worst to Best films I watched by the Master of Suspense (not that the Best should be any type of surprise).  Today we'll look at #s 34-27 with a snippet of my final thoughts for each film.

#34 --  Spellbound (1945) -- D-
One would think that with two big stars -- Gregory Peck and Ingrid Bergman -- something much better would have come out of Spellbound.  However, the two stars are awful and have zero charisma with each other.  The film is incredibly dated and simply doesn't translate well to today's day and age.  The only thing saving this film from an 'F' is the Salvador Dali-inspired dream sequence, a snapshot of which can be seen above.

#33 --  Lifeboat (1944) -- D-
Talk about boring.  Lifeboat is a film that I had been looking forward to watching, but it's one that I will never watch again.  One would think that being confined to a small space (the entire film takes place on a lifeboat) would cause tensions to rise, but there wasn't a moment of suspense here.

#32 --  Stage Fright (1950) -- D
Stage Fright isn't so much a movie as it is "The Marlene Dietrich Show."  The gravel-voiced Dietrich is such a caricature of herself that there's no disassociation between her and her character and it completely takes you out of the movie.  Not that there was a whole lot of movie there to begin with...

#31 --  Frenzy (1972) -- D
Yep.  That above is supposed to be a serious shot in Frenzy, Hitch's only R-rated film and only film with nudity.  What made Hitch Hitch was the fact that he always had to allude to the horrors that he depicted onscreen.  When he's allowed to show the crimes (as he is here), it just doesn't work.  Maybe someone's tongue really would stick out if they were strangled by a necktie, but it doesn't mean I want to see that.

#30 --  To Catch a Thief (1955) -- D+
Another flick I was looking forward to that fizzled.  Not much chemistry between Cary Grant and Grace Kelly and not much of a story either.  Add in a completely obvious villain and it's a movie that just doesn't have much going for it.

#29 --  Man Who Knew Too Much (1934) -- C-
In the picture above, the man in the front kidnapped the daughter of the man in the back.  One would think that the man in the back would be beating up the man in the front, trying to get his daughter back.  He doesn't.  Instead, he eats sandwiches with the kidnappers.  If anything, I think my C- rating may be a tad high for this one.  Watch the remake by Hitch which you'll see much further up this list.

#28 --  Mr. and Mrs. Smith (1941) -- C-
A flick lacking any amount of mystery, Mr. and Mrs. Smith is Hitchcock's one true comedy.  An apparent love letter to the lovely lady above, Hitch did the film as a favor to the actress Carole Lombard, a comedienne whom Hitch greatly admired.  Unfortunately, the flick just isn't funny.  But I do kind of want to go rent some Carole Lombard movies.

#27 --  Under Capricorn (1949) -- C-
The second Ingrid Bergman movie in this bottom of the barrel list (it makes me kind of want to watch Casablanca again to see if I even like her in that).  A period piece that's more of a drama than anything else.  What is interesting and what perhaps makes this worthy of a rental for film fans is Hitch's utilization of the long take in this film.  There are actually some stunning shots with some beautiful camera movements...the film ain't so stunning and beautiful, though.


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