Alfred Hitchcock

Watch Selected Independent and Cult Films

Watch hundreds of rare independent and arthouse films, cult films and hand-picked documentaries from around the world with a single subscription, on any device. No limits, no ads.

Table of Contents

Who Was Alfred Hitchcock? 

The one who would become one of the most famous directors of all time was the son of a modest family of merchants, his father was a fruit and vegetable trader, Alfred Hitchcock studied in a strict boarding school of Jesuit fathers. After the loss of his father he enrolled in a naval engineering school. After the war ended, he found a job as an advertiser at the Henley Telegraph and Cable Company.

His interest in film work came when Famous Players-Lasky opened a branch in London. He works first in the office dealing with subtitles, then moves on to screenwriting and directing. The first films, Number 13 (1922) and Always Tell Your Wife (1923), were not particularly successful. 

He made two other silent films: The pleasure garden (1925) followed by The Lodger (1926). The Tenant is Hitchcock’s first particularly successful work, loved by both critics and audiences. In the meantime he changes production, starts working with British International Pictures with which he shoots his first sound film, Blackmail, in 1929.

It was written and conceived as a silent film, but with the arrival of the new technology Hitchcock changes the screenplay little before shooting. From then on he enjoyed appearing as an extra in all of his films, eventually becoming a well-known television personality a few decades later. Hitchcock creates with his personality a very strong brand for all thriller lovers, a genre from which he will never stray. 

Hitchcock’s Movies in Hollywood


In the mid-thirties his fame as a master of thrills arrives in Hollywood with the film The Man Who Knew Too Much, from 1934. In 1939 he decides to move to work in the United States in the Mecca of cinema. In 1940 he made Rebecca. The film wins the Oscar for best actress and brings the young Jean Fontaine into the limelight. 

Hitchcock only has to be content with a nomination for best director. In the course of his career, five other nominations will follow: Suspicion (1941), Lifeboat (1944), Spellbound (1945), Rear window (1954), Psyco (1960). 

In the 1940s, Hitchcock returned to England only to make two propaganda documentaries. Back in Hollywood he shoots Notorious. In the cast there are two stars of those years Cary Grant and Ingrid Bergman. The film is a huge commercial success. 

In 1948 he made his first color film Rope, where he experimented with something never made before: a sequence shot that lasted the entire duration of the film. The period, however, is not the best, his production company, Transatlantic, fails, Hitchcock is forced for a period to teach directing at the University of Los Angeles. 

Hitchcock’s Masterpieces of the 50s and 60s 

In 1951 he managed to resume his activity and in 1955 he began the famous television series Alfred Hitchcock presents, with which he also became a well-known television personality. In the following years he created a series of masterpieces, one after the other: To Catch a Thief (1955), Vertig (1959), The Birds (1963).

Cinema According to Hitchcock by Truffaut


In 1966 the book-interview created by François Truffaut Cinema according to Hitchcock contributes to changing the opinion of both critics and the public on his work. American critics did not consider him a filmmaker of arthouse cinema but an entertainer, a thriller professional. 

The French critics, on the other hand, saw his filmography in another way: a great author with a personal and recognizable style who, for a variety of reasons, was able to work with large budgets within the Studios. Hitchcock knew how to use and create stars, he knew how to respect the genres and needs of industrial cinema. 

And he did all this without giving up creating as great artists do: becoming a means of communication between the work of art and unknown worlds. He makes films by delving into his irrational fears and transforming them into fears of the collective unconscious

Until the 1960s, Alfred Hitchcock was considered a good craftsman, a thriller creator in the Hollywood commercial system, but he was not considered a great film artist. 

Alfred Hitchcock, from entertainer to artist 

The French filmmakers and critics of the Nouvelle Vague, including Truffaut, Chabrol, Rivette, Rohmer, wrote a series of articles on Cahiers du cinema, the magazine directed by the godfather of the movement Andre Bazin, which subverted ideas traditional on certain films and certain directors. One of their main theses was that classic American cinema was not always to be considered commercial cinema, when behind it there was a director with a strong personality. Filmmakers who according to their thinking were absolutely great artists and geniuses of cinema but who managed to work within the rigid system of Studios. 

Among them were certainly Howard Hawks, and Alfred Hitchcock and Orson Welles. Against Alfred Hitchcock of French filmmakers from Nouvelle veg conduct a real promotional campaign that spreads everywhere. The fundamental article was written in October 1954 by Alexandre Astruc in an editorial entitled When a man… 

The themes of Alfred Hitchcock


“When a man for 30 years and through 50 films tells roughly the same story, that of a soul grappling with evil, and maintaining along this unique line the same style essentially made up of an exemplary way of undressing the characters and immersing them in the abstract universe of their passions, it seems difficult to me not to admit that we are, for once, of in the face of what appears increasingly rare in this industry: a film author. “

Hitchcock’s career will continue for more than twenty years after this article and the work of promotion by the filmmakers of the Cahiers du cinema. But his style and themes will remain personal and consistent until the end of his career, confirming what Astruc said. 

But while Orson Welles‘ career was not often rewarded by commercial success and the director became a financial danger to be avoided by the studios, Hitchcock’s films were nearly all major commercial successes and helped create bias from some critics who he looked suspiciously at the Hollywood directors making box office cashes. 

Hitchcock, thrill master 


One of the reasons was probably that Hitchcock specialized in only one genre that I never give up. The public identified him over the decades as the master of the thrill and remained faithful to him until the last film. From the very beginning of his career in England, Hitchcock focused on the thriller genre and suspense. The moral themes that will focus his attention in the following years are guilt and sin, reality and appearance, anguish and suspicion. 

The symbols of the Hitchcock film 

To do this, Hitchcock uses real stories and actions that however acquire a strongly symbolic dimension. Vertigo, the sense of sinking and sinking are deep fears of the unconscious that run through much of his filmography. Starting from concrete locations and characters, Hitchcock’s films become increasingly abstract and symbolic during the narration: the faces, the lights, the objects, the spiral camera movements, the shots from above or below are no longer simple directorial tricks but real and own iconographic galleries of the unconscious. This ability of Alfred Hitchcock to transform the details and images of reality into a mysterious and irrational journey, to discover the most hidden fears, makes him one of the greatest directors in the history of films

Even the seemingly lighter films that insert a comedy tone are a very classic narrative and suitable for the large mass audience, such as by Northwest, Hitchcock always maintains an underground dimension that allows the most attentive viewers a deeper reading. What Hitchcock really cares about is analyzing human nature. His characters are always looking for their own identity within distressing and disturbing stories. 

Experimental Cinema Inside the Studios 


Hitchcock’s style is a continuous experimentation and innovation throughout his filmography. The classic language is continually transgressed in the memorable camera movements that lead us from the largest to the smallest to the discovery of insignificant details that allow us to discover the killer, as in Young and Innocent. Or real challenges of the classic ideas of cinema like the film shot in a single sequence shot by Rope, from 1948. Or the fragmentation of the murder in the shower of Psycho, which is inspired by the models of the Soviet avant-garde . 

In the first films such as The lodger, 1927, Blackmail of 1929, The Man Who Knew Too Much, The 39 Steps of 1935, Sabotage of 1936, Young and innocent of 1937, The Lady Vanishes of 1938 Hitchcock creates a moral and psychological universe in which his personal obsessions become a very recognizable visual and directing style, which he subsequently perfects from film to film. Hitchcock’s thriller becomes more and more a dream journey in search of a fundamental problem: the identity of the individual, the split between conscious and unconscious, normality and madness, morality and instinct. 

The Lodger – 1927


It is Alfred Hitchcock’s first real feature film, with the style and characteristics that will make him famous in the following years: suspense, a clash between good and evil, a simple but exciting style. We are in London. On a dark winter afternoon the body of a woman is found on the banks of the Thames, a crowd of onlookers both gather to watch. The news spreads quickly in the city: it seems that there is a killer who kills blond women every Tuesday leaving a note with a signature: “The avenger”.

Plot: “The Lodger” is a suspenseful thriller set in London, where a series of gruesome murders are committed by a mysterious figure known as “The Avenger.” The Avenger targets young blonde women, and the city is gripped by fear and paranoia.

The story centers on a couple, Mr. and Mrs. Bunting, who run a boarding house. Their latest lodger, a man known only as “The Lodger” and played by Ivor Novello, raises suspicions because he exhibits odd behavior and fits the general description of The Avenger. As the lodger becomes romantically involved with the Bunting’s daughter, Daisy, the tension in the house and the neighborhood intensifies.

The film explores themes of suspicion, paranoia, and the fear of the unknown, all while keeping the identity of The Avenger shrouded in mystery.

Style: Alfred Hitchcock’s early directorial style is evident in “The Lodger.” He employs innovative techniques in cinematography and editing to create suspense and tension, even in the silent film format. Hitchcock’s use of visual storytelling and atmospheric scenes foreshadows the techniques he would later use in his more famous works.

Reception: Upon its release, “The Lodger” received critical acclaim and is considered one of Hitchcock’s early masterpieces. It helped establish him as a director with a unique and innovative approach to filmmaking. The film’s success paved the way for Hitchcock’s later career in Hollywood and his reputation as the “Master of Suspense.”

“The Lodger” is celebrated for its contribution to the thriller genre and its role in shaping Hitchcock’s career as one of the most influential directors in film history.

The Secret Agent – 1940


In 1916 the news spread that a British writer died at the front. It is actually a cover for starting a secret agent mission in Switzerland. The protagonist must kill a spy to preserve British interests in the Middle East. Listed among the best foreign films of 1936 by the National Board of Review of Motion Pictures.

Plot: “The Secret Agent” tells the story of Adolf Verloc, a spy and saboteur living in London. Verloc is secretly employed by an embassy to carry out espionage activities. He is tasked with planting a bomb at a famous landmark, which is intended to cause chaos and political unrest.

Verloc’s activities are conducted in secrecy, even from his family. However, his actions have far-reaching and tragic consequences, leading to a chain of events that ultimately threatens to expose his espionage work and endanger those he cares about.

The film explores themes of espionage, political intrigue, and the moral dilemmas faced by individuals involved in clandestine activities.

Style: Alfred Hitchcock’s direction in “The Secret Agent” showcases his early mastery of suspense and tension. The film features Hitchcock’s characteristic use of visual storytelling and innovative camera techniques. Hitchcock’s ability to create a sense of unease and suspense is evident throughout the film.

Reception: “The Secret Agent” received positive reviews upon its release and is considered a solid entry in Hitchcock’s early filmography. While it may not be as well-known as some of Hitchcock’s later masterpieces, it is recognized for its effective portrayal of espionage and its exploration of the psychological toll of living a double life.

While the film is not as famous as some of Hitchcock’s later works, it remains a notable entry in his filmography and is appreciated for its contribution to the suspense and espionage thriller genre.

Sabotage – 1936


A cinema owner actually works for a secret organization that attempts to destabilize the political and social situation in England through terrorist attacks. Film at the time difficult to find in cinemas outside the United Kingdom, it will be released later in many countries in the 60s, after the great success of Hitchcock. 

Plot: “Sabotage” is set in London and follows the story of Verloc (played by Oscar Homolka), a cinema owner who is secretly involved in a terrorist organization. Unbeknownst to his wife, Sylvia (played by Sylvia Sidney), Verloc is tasked with carrying out a bombing mission in the city. The group he is affiliated with intends to cause chaos and destruction.

As Verloc becomes entangled in this dangerous mission, the film explores the moral dilemmas he faces, particularly concerning the impact of his actions on innocent people, including his wife and her younger brother Stevie (played by Desmond Tester).

The film unfolds as a suspenseful thriller, with tension mounting as Verloc’s involvement in the terrorist plot becomes increasingly perilous.

Style: Alfred Hitchcock’s direction in “Sabotage” highlights his skill in building suspense and tension. The film features Hitchcock’s trademark use of suspenseful sequences and visual storytelling. Hitchcock creates a sense of unease and moral ambiguity, which are central to the film’s themes.

Reception: “Sabotage” received positive reviews upon its release and is considered one of Hitchcock’s notable works from his British period. It is praised for its exploration of the psychological and moral aspects of terrorism and for its suspenseful storytelling.

While “Sabotage” may not be as well-known as some of Hitchcock’s later Hollywood productions, it remains a significant entry in his filmography, showcasing his early mastery of suspense and his ability to delve into complex moral issues in a thrilling narrative.

The Lady Vanishes – 1938


A young English woman traveling by train to London meets an elderly lady with whom she immediately establishes a pleasant friendship. But a short time later the lady disappears into thin air, everyone denies having known her and the young woman suspects that there is a conspiracy behind the disappearance. Hitchcock’s latest film in England is his English cinematic testament. Highly appreciated and studied in detail by Francois Truffaut. 

Plot: “The Lady Vanishes” is set in a remote European village where a group of passengers is stranded at an inn due to an avalanche. Among them is a young Englishwoman named Iris Henderson (played by Margaret Lockwood). She becomes friends with an older Englishwoman named Miss Froy (played by May Whitty) while waiting for the train to continue their journey.

However, when Iris wakes up from a nap, Miss Froy has disappeared, and the other passengers deny ever having seen her. Iris becomes convinced that Miss Froy existed and sets out to uncover the mystery of her disappearance. Along with another passenger, Gilbert (played by Michael Redgrave), they embark on a quest to find the vanished lady.

The film is a blend of mystery, comedy, and suspense, with Iris and Gilbert facing numerous obstacles and eccentric characters as they try to solve the enigma.

Style: Alfred Hitchcock’s direction in “The Lady Vanishes” showcases his talent for building suspense and crafting memorable characters. The film features witty and engaging dialogue, with a clever blend of humor and tension. Hitchcock’s ability to create suspense is evident throughout the film, as the mystery deepens and the stakes rise.

Reception: “The Lady Vanishes” received critical acclaim upon its release and is considered one of Hitchcock’s finest works. It is celebrated for its storytelling, humor, and memorable characters, particularly the spirited performance of Margaret Lockwood as Iris. The film’s success in both the United Kingdom and the United States helped solidify Hitchcock’s reputation as a master filmmaker.

“The Lady Vanishes” remains a classic in the mystery and suspense genre and is cherished for its enduring entertainment value and clever storytelling.

Jamaica Inn -1939


The film is set in the early 19th century and Jamaica is in is a tavern where a pirate hideout has been established in Cornwall. At night they attract ships with light signals causing them to be shipwrecked on the rocks. One of Hitchcock’s lesser-known films, which went almost unnoticed in cinemas after the great success of The Lady Vanishes. 

Plot: Set in Cornwall, England, in the early 19th century, “Jamaica Inn” follows the story of Mary Yellen (played by Maureen O’Hara), a young woman who arrives at Jamaica Inn to live with her aunt Patience (played by Marie Ney) and her abusive husband Joss (played by Leslie Banks). Little does Mary know that Jamaica Inn is a hub for smugglers, and her uncle is the leader of the gang.

As Mary becomes entangled in the dangerous activities of the inn’s criminal inhabitants, she also encounters Jem Trahearne (played by Robert Newton), a handsome stranger who might be the key to unraveling the mysteries of Jamaica Inn. Together, they embark on a journey to expose the criminal network.

Style: Alfred Hitchcock’s direction in “Jamaica Inn” showcases his talent for suspense and atmosphere. The film captures the dark and foreboding atmosphere of the novel and features elements of mystery and intrigue, with Hitchcock’s signature touches.

Reception: “Jamaica Inn” received mixed reviews upon its release and is often considered one of Hitchcock’s lesser works. Some critics praised its atmosphere and performances, while others found fault with the pacing and adaptation. Hitchcock himself was reportedly dissatisfied with the final product due to creative differences with the producers.

Despite its mixed reception, “Jamaica Inn” remains a part of Hitchcock’s filmography and is appreciated by some as an atmospheric thriller with a touch of the gothic. It’s also notable for being Hitchcock’s last film made in Britain before his move to Hollywood, where he would go on to create some of his most iconic works.

The 39 Steps – 1935


A young Canadian traveling to London becomes embroiled in a spy story and must defend himself against a secret organization called the 39 Steps. To help him he will only find a woman named Pamela. Film particularly appreciated by critics for the very in-depth characters, the fast pace, the complex plot and the suspense. 

Plot: “The 39 Steps” follows the story of Richard Hannay (played by Robert Donat), a Canadian visiting London, who becomes embroiled in a web of espionage and intrigue. After attending a music hall performance, Hannay meets a mysterious woman named Annabella Smith (played by Lucie Mannheim), who confides in him about a plot involving spies who are after military secrets.

When Annabella is murdered in Hannay’s apartment, he becomes the prime suspect. With the police hot on his trail, Hannay flees to Scotland to uncover the truth and clear his name. Along the way, he encounters Pamela (played by Madeleine Carroll), who initially disbelieves his story but eventually becomes his ally.

The film takes Hannay on a suspenseful journey as he tries to evade capture and expose the espionage ring known as “The 39 Steps.”

Style: Alfred Hitchcock’s direction in “The 39 Steps” showcases his talent for suspense and innovative storytelling. The film features several iconic sequences, including the famous scene in which Hannay and Pamela are handcuffed together. Hitchcock’s ability to create tension and keep the audience engaged is on full display.

Reception: “The 39 Steps” received critical acclaim upon its release and is considered one of Hitchcock’s classic works. It is celebrated for its storytelling, clever use of humor, and the dynamic chemistry between the lead actors. The film’s success helped establish Hitchcock as a master of suspense, both in Britain and internationally.

“The 39 Steps” remains a beloved and influential film in the thriller genre and is often regarded as one of Alfred Hitchcock’s finest achievements.

Notorious – 1946


According to Francois Truffaut, the pinnacle of Hitchcock’s abstraction and stylistic perfection is the film Notorious. The French filmmaker comments on it in an article with these words: “Notorious has remained extraordinarily modern, it contains few scenes and is of a magnificent purity. He managed to get the maximum effect with the minimum of elements, all the suspense scenes are built around two objects, always the same, the key and the false bottle of wine. the maximum of stylization and the maximum of simplicity “. 

Notorious was born from a screenplay by Ben Hetch that combines the spy story genre with the love story. Ingrid Bergman plays a woman who accepts an assignment to spy on her father’s friend, Sebastian, to redeem herself from her status as the daughter of a Nazi criminal and a woman of easy virtue. Cary Grant plays the secret agent who forces her to accept the job but falls in love with her too. However, Alicia is forced to marry Sebastian. 

If in the first part of the film The division between good and evil, between good and bad, may seem simplified as in classic Hollywood cinema, the progression of the story completely questions these values. The good hero played by Cary Grant forces and forces the woman to risk her life and leaves her in the arms of the villain Sebastian. On the other hand, the villain is betrayed by the woman who pretends to love him and marries him, in her good faith and in her sincere feeling of love. 

Plot: The story revolves around Alicia Huberman (played by Ingrid Bergman), the daughter of a convicted Nazi spy. After her father’s conviction, Alicia is recruited by a U.S. intelligence agent, T.R. Devlin (played by Cary Grant), to infiltrate a group of Nazis who have relocated to Brazil after World War II.

Alicia’s mission is to get close to one of the Nazi leaders, Alexander Sebastian (played by Claude Rains), and gather information about their activities. As she becomes entangled with Sebastian and the other members of the group, including his overbearing mother (played by Madame Konstantin), Alicia and Devlin’s feelings for each other intensify.

The film is a tale of espionage, deception, and moral ambiguity, as Alicia risks her life to uncover Nazi secrets while navigating a treacherous romantic relationship.

Style: Alfred Hitchcock’s direction in “Notorious” is celebrated for its masterful storytelling and suspense-building techniques. The film is known for its long takes, including an iconic three-minute kiss between Alicia and Devlin, and a key plot element involving wine bottles.

Hitchcock’s meticulous attention to detail and his ability to create tension through subtle nuances in performances make “Notorious” a standout in his filmography.

Reception: “Notorious” was a critical and commercial success upon its release and is considered one of Hitchcock’s finest works. It received Academy Award nominations and was praised for its performances, particularly those of Ingrid Bergman and Cary Grant, as well as Hitchcock’s direction.

Over the years, “Notorious” has continued to be celebrated as a classic of the thriller genre and is noted for its exploration of complex characters and morally ambiguous situations. It remains a beloved and influential film in Hitchcock’s oeuvre.

The Paradine case – 1947

The Paradine case

Maddalena Paradine is accused of killing her old and blind husband. Agreeing to defend her in court is a famous lawyer named Kean. Failed film at its release, both from the point of view of critics and that of the public: proceeds were not enough to cover production costs. Hitchcock himself felt he had made some bad choices in the cast and script. It was later re-evaluated by the French filmmakers Rohmer and Chabrol. 

Plot: The film centers around the trial of Maddalena Anna Paradine (played by Alida Valli), an Italian woman accused of the murder of her wealthy and elderly husband, Colonel Paradine. The Paradine case becomes a high-profile cause célèbre and draws the attention of a renowned defense attorney, Anthony Keane (played by Gregory Peck), who is tasked with representing Maddalena.

Keane is a successful lawyer with an impeccable reputation, but the Paradine case tests him both professionally and personally. During the trial, Keane discovers that his client may be hiding secrets and that there could be strong evidence against her. Meanwhile, Keane becomes emotionally entangled with Maddalena, jeopardizing his marriage to his devoted wife, Gay (played by Ann Todd).

The film explores legal drama, moral ambiguities, and the complex relationships of the characters as the mystery surrounding Colonel Paradine’s murder gradually unfolds during the trial.

Style: “The Paradine Case” reflects Alfred Hitchcock’s typical style, with a particular focus on the psychology of the characters and visual details. While the film may be less well-known than some of Hitchcock’s more celebrated works, it still bears his distinctive touch in building suspense and portraying the characters’ emotions.

Reception: Despite Hitchcock’s directorial talent and a talented cast, “The Paradine Case” did not achieve great critical or commercial success upon its release. Some critics found the film to be too slow and melodramatic. However, over the years, the film has gained some reappraisal and is appreciated for its cinematic qualities and exploration of complex themes.

While “The Paradine Case” may not be one of Hitchcock’s most famous films, it remains an interesting part of his filmography and a testament to his ability to direct courtroom dramas and thrillers with psychological nuances.

Rope – 1948

“Rope” is a 1948 film directed by Alfred Hitchcock. This psychological thriller is known for its unusual format and gripping plot.

The plot follows two university students, Brandon Shaw (played by John Dall) and Philip Morgan (played by Farley Granger), who deliberately murder their classmate, David Kentley, simply for the thrill of committing a perfect crime. After the murder, they host a dinner party in the apartment where they’ve hidden the body, inviting friends, family, and even their former professor, Rupert Cadell (played by James Stewart). Brandon and Philip attempt to conceal the corpse and maintain their composure as their professor begins to suspect that something sinister is afoot.

One of the most notable features of “Rope” is its unusual format. Hitchcock filmed the movie to appear as if it were shot in a single continuous take, creating the illusion that the entire film is composed of a single long shot. This experimental approach adds to the tension and claustrophobic atmosphere of the film.

The plot of “Rope” is based on a play by Patrick Hamilton and was adapted for the screen by Hume Cronyn. The film is known for its gripping plot and exceptional performances by the cast. Hitchcock explores themes of guilt, morality, and narcissism through the main characters.

Under Capricorn – 1949


In the first half of the nineteenth century in Australia an Irish nobleman falls in love with a tormented alcoholic woman, the wife of a wealthy businessman. An anomalous film for Hitchcock, a costumed melodrama shot with sequence shot technique, already experimented by the director in Rope. Audiences expecting an adrenaline-charged thriller were deeply disappointed. Years later the director Rivette and other critics of the Cahiers du cinema talk about the forgotten and unknown masterpiece of the great British director. 

Plot: The film is set in New South Wales, Australia, and follows the story of Lady Henrietta Flusky (played by Ingrid Bergman), the wife of the newly appointed Governor Charles Adare (played by Michael Wilding). Lady Henrietta is troubled and haunted by her past, which includes a scandalous incident involving her husband and her former lover, Samson Flusky (played by Joseph Cotten).

As Lady Henrietta struggles with alcoholism and emotional turmoil, she forms a close friendship with her maid, Milly (played by Margaret Leighton). Milly becomes aware of Lady Henrietta’s secrets and begins to manipulate the situation to her advantage.

The film explores themes of love, jealousy, and redemption as the characters’ relationships become increasingly complex. It also delves into the harsh realities of colonial life in Australia.

Style: Alfred Hitchcock’s direction in “Under Capricorn” is notable for its long takes and tracking shots, a departure from his more typical suspenseful style. Hitchcock aimed to create a lush and atmospheric period piece, and the film is known for its visual beauty and attention to detail in recreating the 19th-century setting.

Reception: “Under Capricorn” received mixed reviews upon its release and was not a commercial success. Critics at the time were divided over the film’s pacing and its departure from Hitchcock’s usual suspenseful fare. However, in subsequent years, some critics and Hitchcock enthusiasts have revisited the film and praised its unique qualities, including the performances of the cast and the period atmosphere.

While “Under Capricorn” may not be as well-known as some of Hitchcock’s other works, it remains an interesting departure for the director and is appreciated by some for its historical setting and character-driven drama.

Stage Fright – 1950

“Stage Fright” is a 1950 film directed by Alfred Hitchcock. This psychological thriller is known for its intricate plot and well-developed characters.

The plot follows a young amateur actress, Eve Gill (played by Jane Wyman), who becomes determined to uncover the truth behind a murder for which Jonathan Cooper (played by Richard Todd), an actor she knows, is accused. Eve begins to investigate to prove Cooper’s innocence and encounters a series of twists and deceptions. Marlene Dietrich portrays Charlotte Inwood, a famous actress involved in the affair, and her performance is one of the film’s highlights.

“Stage Fright” is known for its use of unreliable narration, which casts doubt on the truthfulness of the characters’ testimonies and flashbacks. The film also explores themes of obsession and identity. While it is not considered one of Hitchcock’s masterpieces, the director experimented with plot and narrative structure in an interesting way.

Overall, “Stage Fright” is an intriguing thriller that offers a fascinating glimpse into the world of theater and performance and features many of the distinctive elements of Alfred Hitchcock’s filmmaking.

Strangers on a Train – 1951

“Strangers on a Train” is a 1951 film directed by Alfred Hitchcock. This psychological thriller is known for its intriguing plot and effective use of suspense.

The plot follows two men, Guy Haines (played by Farley Granger) and Charles Bruno (played by Robert Walker), who meet by chance on a train. During their conversation, Bruno suggests a murder proposition: each of them should kill a person the other wants to get rid of. Guy initially takes the proposal lightly, but Bruno, who is mentally unstable, starts to take it seriously and commits a murder. This puts Guy in a harrowing situation as he becomes involved in a murder he didn’t commit.

The film explores themes of guilt, double lives, and the burden of a dark secret. Hitchcock uses the plot to create tension and suspense, particularly in key sequences like the amusement park scene.

“Strangers on a Train” is considered one of Hitchcock’s masterpieces and one of his most memorable films. Robert Walker’s performance as Bruno was particularly acclaimed. The film is a classic example of the thriller genre and has influenced many subsequent filmmakers in the realm of suspense cinema.

I Confess – 1953

“I Confess” is a 1953 film directed by Alfred Hitchcock. This psychological thriller revolves around a Catholic priest who becomes embroiled in a murder and the consequences that follow.

The plot follows Catholic priest Father Michael Logan (played by Montgomery Clift), who becomes aware of a confessional secret involving the murder of a lawyer. However, because he is bound by the seal of the confessional, he cannot share this information with the police, even when he becomes the prime suspect in the murder. Tension mounts as the police try to solve the case, and the priest struggles to protect his faith and the sanctity of the confessional.

“I Confess” is known for its intricate plot and the moral conflict of the main character. Alfred Hitchcock skillfully exploits the unique situation of the confessional secret to create suspense and drama. The film explores themes of guilt, redemption, and morality.

While “I Confess” was not one of Hitchcock’s most famous films at the time of its release, it has been reevaluated over the years and is appreciated for its psychological depth and distinctive style. Montgomery Clift delivers a memorable performance as the tormented priest, and the film stands out for its dark and evocative atmosphere.

Dial M for Murder – 1954

“Dial M for Murder,” is a film from 1954 directed by Alfred Hitchcock. This is a psychological thriller based on a play by Frederick Knott. The film is known for its intricate plot and suspenseful twists.

The plot revolves around Tony Wendice (played by Ray Milland), a man who plots to murder his wife, Margot (played by Grace Kelly), in order to inherit her fortune. Tony hires a former college acquaintance to carry out the perfect murder, but things don’t go as planned, leading to a series of complex events.

Much of the film is set in a single location, the couple’s apartment, and Hitchcock skillfully uses suspense and psychological tension to keep viewers glued to the screen.

“The Perfect Crime” is also notable for being one of the early films shot in 3D, although most theatrical screenings did not utilize this technology. The film has become a classic of film noir and helped solidify Alfred Hitchcock’s reputation as a master of suspense.

Rear Window -1954


According to the “young Turks” of the Cahiers du cinema, the dominant definition of the thrill master was limiting for Alfred Hitchcock. To confirm this there was a film like Rear Window, a brilliant metacinematographic device, a reflection on observing and being observed. James Stewart is a photojournalist immobilized in a wheelchair due to an accident, and spends his time spying out of the window at the courtyard and the apartments of his neighbors who live across the street.

His character alludes directly to the condition of the cinematic spectator who watches the film motionless in his armchair. Every window in every apartment that James Stewart observes with his binoculars is a possible film, a possible world. 

“Rear Window” is a 1954 film directed by Alfred Hitchcock. It is one of Hitchcock’s masterpieces known for its engaging plot, psychological tension, and innovative use of camera work. Here’s an overview of the film:

Plot: The film follows the story of L.B. “Jeff” Jefferies (played by James Stewart), a professional photographer confined to a wheelchair due to a broken leg. Jeff lives in a New York City apartment with a view of an inner courtyard and observes the lives of his neighbors through his window. During the hot summer nights, Jeff begins to suspect that one of his neighbors, Lars Thorwald (played by Raymond Burr), has committed a murder.

Jeff shares his concerns with his girlfriend Lisa Fremont (played by Grace Kelly) and his friend Stella (played by Thelma Ritter). Together, they try to gather evidence and uncover the truth about the alleged murder, putting their safety at risk.

The film explores themes of observation, voyeurism, and the fine line between innocent curiosity and intrusion.

Style: Alfred Hitchcock’s direction in “Rear Window” is celebrated for its innovative use of visual perspective and creating tension through pure observation. Much of the film is shot from Jeff’s apartment, allowing viewers to see what he sees and share his paranoia and sense of helplessness.

Hitchcock’s camerawork and his use of close-ups, long takes, and rhythmic editing contribute to creating an engaging and tense narrative.

Reception: “Rear Window” was a critical and commercial success upon its release and is considered one of Hitchcock’s masterpieces. It received four Academy Award nominations, including one for Best Director.

Over the years, the film has been praised for its ability to keep the audience glued to the screen and for the performances of James Stewart, Grace Kelly, and the other cast members. It has become a landmark in suspense cinema and continues to be loved and studied as a timeless classic.

To Catch a Thief – 1955

“To Catch a Thief” is a 1955 film directed by Alfred Hitchcock. The film is known for its luxurious settings and its intriguing blend of suspense and romance.

The plot follows John Robie (played by Cary Grant), a former jewel thief known as “The Cat,” who becomes embroiled in a series of jewel heists on the French Riviera. As Robie is the only surviving member of his old gang, he becomes the prime suspect. To prove his innocence and unmask the real thief, Robie teams up with a wealthy French heiress, played by Grace Kelly.

The film is known for its visual elegance and spectacular action sequences, including a famous car chase scene along the winding roads of the French Riviera. Cary Grant and Grace Kelly share undeniable on-screen chemistry, which contributed to the film’s success.

“To Catch a Thief” is considered one of Hitchcock’s lighter works, but it remains a highly regarded film due to its sophisticated style and charm. It is one of the iconic films of the 1950s and helped solidify Hitchcock’s reputation as one of Hollywood’s most celebrated directors.

The Trouble with Harry – 1955

“The Trouble with Harry” is a 1955 film directed by Alfred Hitchcock. This dark comedy is notable because it represents a departure from Hitchcock’s typical style, known for his thrillers and suspense films. The movie is based on a novella by Jack Trevor Story and was primarily shot in Vermont, United States.

The plot revolves around the corpse of a man named Harry, found in the woods by several individuals throughout the day. This sets off a series of comedic events as the characters try to hide, move, or discover what happened to Harry. The film is a dark comedy that treats death in a light and ironic manner.

The cast includes Shirley MacLaine in her first film role, John Forsythe, Edmund Gwenn, and Jerry Mathers. Despite being a box office failure upon its release, the film has gained a cult reputation over the years and is appreciated for its quirkiness and macabre humor. “The Trouble with Harry” represents an intriguing departure from Hitchcock’s typical filmography but is an interesting example of his versatile talent as a director.

The Man Who Knew Too Much – 1956

“The Man Who Knew Too Much” is a 1956 film directed by Alfred Hitchcock. It is a thriller centered around a story of espionage and kidnapping set in Morocco. Here’s an overview of the film:

Plot: The film follows the story of Dr. Benjamin “Ben” McKenna (played by James Stewart) and his wife Josephine “Jo” McKenna (played by Doris Day), an American couple traveling in Morocco with their young son Hank. During a visit to the Marrakech marketplace, they befriend a Frenchman who is subsequently murdered but not before revealing a secret to Ben. This secret involves an international espionage plot.

The couple becomes embroiled in a criminal organization and begins trying to thwart a plan involving murder and kidnapping. Their quest takes them to London, where the climax of the drama unfolds.

The film explores the theme of innocence put to the test and the struggle of an ordinary couple against dark and powerful forces.

Style: Alfred Hitchcock directed “The Man Who Knew Too Much” with his customary skill in building suspense and using psychological tension. The film features some memorable sequences, including a suspenseful assassination attempt at the Royal Albert Hall in London.

Reception: The film was well-received by both critics and audiences upon its release. It is known for the performances of James Stewart and Doris Day, who delivered convincing portrayals. The film’s soundtrack includes the song “Que Sera, Sera (Whatever Will Be, Will Be),” which became a major hit and won an Academy Award.

“The Man Who Knew Too Much” is one of Hitchcock’s most well-known remakes, as he had previously directed a film with the same title in 1934. The 1956 version is considered a classic of the director and the thriller genre and helped solidify Hitchcock’s reputation as a master of suspense.

The Wrong Man – 1956

“The Wrong Man” is a 1956 film directed by Alfred Hitchcock. It is a dramatic thriller based on a true story and explores themes of mistaken identity and justice. Here’s an overview of the film:

Plot: The film is based on the real-life case of Christopher Emmanuel “Manny” Balestrero, portrayed by Henry Fonda. Manny is a struggling musician who works as a bassist in a nightclub to support his wife, Rose (played by Vera Miles), and their two young sons. When Rose needs dental treatment, Manny decides to borrow against her life insurance policy, but when he goes to an insurance office to inquire about it, he is mistakenly identified as a man who had previously committed a series of robberies.

Manny is arrested and charged with the crimes he did not commit. The film follows his ordeal as he goes through the legal system, facing a trial and the possibility of being wrongfully convicted. Rose, his wife, becomes increasingly distraught as she struggles to prove her husband’s innocence.

Style: Alfred Hitchcock’s direction in “The Wrong Man” is marked by its realism and departure from his usual suspenseful style. He sought to create a documentary-like atmosphere and even used some of the actual locations where the events occurred.

The film’s stark portrayal of the criminal justice system and its impact on the lives of ordinary people adds to its intensity and emotional weight.

Reception: “The Wrong Man” received positive reviews for its gripping storytelling and the performances of Henry Fonda and Vera Miles. It was praised for its exploration of the theme of mistaken identity and the injustice faced by the innocent.

While it may not be as well-known as some of Hitchcock’s more famous works, “The Wrong Man” is appreciated for its departure from his typical style and its compelling exploration of a true-life miscarriage of justice.

Vertigo – 1958

“Vertigo” is a 1958 film directed by Alfred Hitchcock. It is one of Hitchcock’s masterpieces known for its intricate plot and exploration of the theme of obsession. Here’s an overview of the film:

Plot: The film follows the story of John “Scottie” Ferguson, played by James Stewart, a private investigator suffering from acrophobia (fear of heights) due to a traumatic incident. After a traumatic experience in which he witnessed a policeman’s death while trying to save him from a rooftop, Scottie has retired from the police force.

He is hired by an old acquaintance, Gavin Elster, portrayed by Tom Helmore, to follow his wife, Madeleine Elster, played by Kim Novak. Gavin suspects that Madeleine is behaving strangely and might be possessed by a spirit. As Scottie begins to follow Madeleine, he becomes infatuated with her and gets entangled in a complex mystery related to Madeleine’s past.

The film explores themes of obsession, identity, and manipulation as Scottie becomes increasingly immersed in Madeleine’s enigma.

Style: Alfred Hitchcock directed “Vertigo” with great mastery in creating suspense and using visual symbolism. The film is known for its use of innovative camera techniques, including the “dolly zoom,” a technique that creates the sensation of vertigo.

The film’s cinematography and score contribute to creating an immersive and eerie atmosphere.

Reception: Upon its release, “Vertigo” received mixed reviews, but over the years, it has become one of Hitchcock’s most celebrated films and a true classic of cinema. The film was praised for the performances of James Stewart and Kim Novak, as well as its intricate plot and exploration of the boundaries between reality and illusion.

“Vertigo” is considered a cinematic masterpiece and a significant milestone in Hitchcock’s filmography.

North by Northwest – 1959

“North by Northwest” is a famous 1959 film directed by Alfred Hitchcock. It is an action thriller starring Cary Grant in the lead role, with Eva Marie Saint, James Mason, and Martin Landau in key roles.

The plot follows Roger Thornhill (played by Cary Grant), a New York advertising executive who becomes embroiled in a series of extraordinarily dangerous events when he is mistaken for a man named George Kaplan by government agents and international spies. Thornhill finds himself in a relentless chase across the United States, trying to evade his pursuers and uncover the truth behind his confused identity.

The film is known for its gripping plot, humor, spectacular action sequences, and Hitchcock’s masterful direction. Among the most iconic scenes are the chase through cornfields, the encounter on Mount Rushmore, and the creative use of real locations and special effects.

“North by Northwest” received critical acclaim and was a major box office success. It is considered one of Hitchcock’s masterpieces and a classic of American cinema. The film is appreciated for its blend of suspense, action, and humor, and it is often cited as one of the best examples of the thriller genre.

Psycho – 1960

“Psycho” is a famous psychological thriller film from 1960 directed by Alfred Hitchcock. It is based on the novel of the same name by Robert Bloch and has achieved cult movie status thanks to its lasting influence on the thriller and horror genres.

The film follows the story of Marion Crane, played by Janet Leigh, a secretary who steals a large sum of money from her employer and goes on a journey to escape the police. She stops at the Bates Motel, a remote motel run by Norman Bates, played by Anthony Perkins, and the film takes a disturbing turn from there.

“Psycho” is known for many iconic scenes, including the famous shower sequence, which has become a landmark in cinema. The film is also known for its haunting music composed by Bernard Herrmann, which helped create an atmosphere of suspense.

Alfred Hitchcock is considered one of the masters of cinema, and “Psycho” is one of his most celebrated works. The film introduced new cinematic techniques and influenced the way psychological thrillers have been made ever since. Its suspenseful plot and shocking narrative have made “Psycho” a cinematic classic that is still beloved and studied today.

The Birds – 1963

“The Birds ” is a 1963 film directed by Alfred Hitchcock. It is a famous psychological thriller and horror film based on a short story by Daphne du Maurier.

The film’s plot revolves around a series of bird attacks on a small coastal village in California. The protagonist, Melanie Daniels, played by Tippi Hedren, becomes entangled in these strange and violent bird incursions, and together with other village residents, tries to understand what is causing this abnormal behavior in the creatures.

“The Birds ” is known for its highly suspenseful bird attack sequences and its eerie atmosphere. Alfred Hitchcock skillfully used the soundtrack and sound effects to create tension. The film is considered one of Hitchcock’s masterpieces and a classic of the horror and thriller genres.

The performances of the actors, especially that of Tippi Hedren, were praised, and the film has had a lasting impact on popular culture. “The Birds ” is still cited as one of the most influential and memorable films by the British director.

Marnie – 1964

“Marnie” is a 1964 psychological thriller film directed by Alfred Hitchcock. The film stars Tippi Hedren as the titular character, Marnie, and Sean Connery as Mark Rutland.

The story follows Marnie, a young woman with a troubled past who is a habitual thief and compulsive liar. She takes on various identities as she moves from one job to another, but her behavior becomes increasingly erratic and self-destructive. Mark Rutland, a wealthy businessman, becomes fascinated by Marnie and decides to employ her despite her criminal history. He also becomes determined to uncover the reasons behind her behavior.

“Marnie” explores themes of trauma, psychology, and identity. It delves into Marnie’s troubled past and her complex relationship with Mark Rutland, who is determined to help her confront her past traumas. The film is known for its suspenseful storytelling and exploration of psychological issues.

While “Marnie” received mixed reviews upon its initial release, it has gained recognition as a thought-provoking and psychologically intense film over the years. Alfred Hitchcock’s direction and the performances of Tippi Hedren and Sean Connery have been praised for their contributions to the film’s depth and complexity.

Torn Curtain – 1966

“Torn Curtain” is a 1966 film directed by Alfred Hitchcock. This espionage thriller stars Paul Newman and Julie Andrews.

The plot revolves around a renowned American scientist, played by Paul Newman, who decides to defect from his country while visiting East Germany during the Cold War. His companion, played by Julie Andrews, follows him in the escape. However, the East German authorities suspect that something is amiss in their behavior and attempt to hinder them.

The film is known for some gripping espionage and escape sequences. “Torn Curtain” is an example of Hitchcock’s Cold War-era film, exploring themes of betrayal, double-crossing, and deception. While not considered one of Hitchcock’s most celebrated masterpieces, it still features elements of suspense and intrigue typical of his filmmaking.

Topaz – 1969

“Topaz” is a 1969 film directed by Alfred Hitchcock. This espionage thriller is based on the novel of the same name by Leon Uris.

The film’s plot is set during the Cold War and involves various intelligence agencies, spies, and political intrigue. It follows the efforts of a French intelligence agent to uncover a Soviet spy ring operating in the United States. As the story unfolds, it takes the audience to different international locations, including Cuba.

“Topaz” is known for its complex narrative and espionage themes. While it received mixed reviews upon its release and was not as well-received as some of Hitchcock’s earlier works, it still offers an intriguing story filled with suspense and intrigue. Hitchcock’s signature style and talent for suspenseful storytelling are evident throughout the film.

Frenzy (1972)

“Frenzy” is a 1972 film directed by Alfred Hitchcock. It is a British thriller and is notable for being one of Hitchcock’s later works.

The film’s plot revolves around a series of murders committed by a serial killer in London. The story follows a man who becomes the prime suspect for the murders and his efforts to prove his innocence while attempting to uncover the true identity of the killer. “Frenzy” is known for its dark and suspenseful tone, as well as its exploration of the mind of a psychopathic murderer.

While “Frenzy” received positive reviews and is considered one of Hitchcock’s later successes, it is also known for its graphic content and a departure from some of Hitchcock’s earlier, more restrained filmmaking. The film showcases Hitchcock’s ability to create tension and suspense in a thrilling and gripping narrative.

Family Plot (1976)

“Family Plot” is a 1976 film directed by Alfred Hitchcock. This film is notable for being Hitchcock’s final directorial work before his retirement from filmmaking.

The plot of “Family Plot” follows the exploits of a phony psychic and her partner as they embark on a search to find a missing heir to a wealthy family. In the process, they become entangled in a series of mysterious and suspicious events, including kidnappings and murders. The film blends elements of mystery, comedy, and suspense, characteristic of Hitchcock’s style.

“Family Plot” is known for its light-hearted tone and playful atmosphere, which is somewhat different from the more intense thrillers for which Hitchcock is famous. The film represents an evolution of the director’s work towards a lighter and more playful style. While not considered one of Hitchcock’s masterpieces, it remains a significant part of his filmography and an opportunity to see his distinctive touch even in the genres of comedy and mystery.

Hundreds of Movies and Documentaries Selected Without Limits

New movies every week. Watch on any device, without any ads. Cancel at any time.
error: Content is protected !!

One year with Indiecinema at a discounted price!

A 20% discount is available only until Sunday to activate your annual subscription to Indiecinema.

To redeem the promo, enter the code INDIE20 at the time of purchase in the promo code box. Alternatively use the button below and the code will be applied automatically.