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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 III

Continuing on with a brief look back at each film in the Hitchcock Fest...

#26 --  Dial M for Murder (1954) -- C-
Perhaps I just wasn't in the mood for this film at the time I watched it, but Dial M for Murder didn't win me over this time around.  I know I've seen it before and I remember liking it, but this time around the production just seemed very dry.  Despite a few good scenes, the story seemed more suited for the stage rather than for film.

#25 --  Topaz (1969) -- C
This espionage thriller works quite well for the first half, but the second half turns into a nighttime soap opera and falls apart.  

#24 --  I Confess (1953) -- C
As I'm discovering as I read through Hitch's biography, Hitch grew up Catholic and his religion certainly shaped him.  Catholicism is front and center in I Confess, the tale of a priest wrongly accused of murder.  Unfortunately, the film's a tad on the melodramatic side and Montgomery Clift's portrayal of the wronged priest (which is actually quite praised by most reviews) didn't work for me at all.

#23 --  The Lady Vanishes  (1938) -- C
This early Hitchcock film about a lady who vanishes on a train trip through eastern Europe would have worked much better had it all been set on a train.  However, the first thirty minutes of the film are just unnecessary filler and bring the flick to a screeching halt before it even begins.  Cut out the first act and you're all set with a decent movie.

#22 --  Strangers on a Train (1951) -- C
Admittedly, this was the only flick in the Fest that I didn't watch in the month of October.  I watched it last February and didn't rewatch it.  However, the problems with the flick were twofold to me.  One, Farley Granger's character is such a limp noodle that he makes his scenes nearly unwatchable.  And two, while Robert Walker makes for a nasty bad guy, there were scenes towards the end of the film that were simply there to "create excitement" rather than forward the plot.  That's very anti-Hitchcockian to me, seeing as how he usually utilizes tension to advance the story to great effect.  Needless to say, this film is loved by many...just not me.

#21 --  The Trouble with Harry (1955) -- C+
A light-hearted mystery-comedy, The Trouble with Harry is perfectly acceptable lesser-tier Hitchcock to me.  The acting is very good and the script is fine, but it's not quite funny enough to work as a comedy and certainly not thrilling enough to work as a mystery.  It falls awkwardly in the middle of the two genres and the balance isn't quite as good as it should be.

Up next...#s 20-11...

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