By Michael Walker
Alfred Hitchcock's movies are popular across the world, and a mountain of literature has designated probably each side of them. but remarkably few stories have exclusively concerned about the ordinary motifs in Hitchcock's movies. Michael Walker treatments this incredible hole in Hitchcock literature with an cutting edge and in-depth examine of the sustained motifs and issues threaded via Hitchcock's whole physique of labor. Combing via all fifty-two extant function motion pictures and consultant episodes from Hitchcock's tv sequence, Walker strains over 40 motifs that emerge in habitual gadgets, settings, character-types, and occasions. even if the loaded that means of staircases, the symbolic prestige of keys and purses, homoeroticism, guilt and confession, or the function of paintings, Walker analyzes such components to bare a fancy internet of cross-references in Hitchcock's artwork. He additionally supplies complete consciousness to the wider social contexts during which the motifs and issues are performed out, arguing that those interwoven components upload new and richer depths to Hitchcock's oeuvre. a useful, encyclopedic source for the student and fan, Hitchcock's Motifs is an engaging research of 1 of the best-known and such a lot famous movie administrators in historical past.
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Additional resources for Hitchcock's Motifs (Film Culture in Transition)
I would like to quote one passage in some detail: Childhood memories, according to Freud, are always of a visual character, even for those whose memories are not generally visual. ) Evidently, the sense of sight is essential, not only to the cinema, but also to memory and dream: the images on the screen can trigger repressed memories and through them the unconscious can speak as in a dream. It is clear how often Hitchcock evokes childhood fears: anxieties rooted in early phases of sexual development.
Indeed, the sequence in which Bernice lovingly brushes Jessie’s hair may be paralleled with its equivalent in Rebecca: when Mrs Danvers recalls how she used to brush Rebecca’s hair. Just as grooming Rebecca enabled Mrs Danvers to express covert erotic feelings towards her mistress, so Bernice seems motivated by a similar impulse towards Jessie. And just as the scene in Rebecca includes a track in to Maxim’s photograph from the heroine’s point of view to express her yearning, so Hitchcock repeats the effect in Marnie, tracking in to towards Jessie’s hair as Bernice brushes it to express Marnie’s yearning.
In melodrama these emotions are also moral categories. (Dyer : ) The refusal of Marnie’s hand to take the money also signals a moral change: she no longer sees Mark as someone from whom she can steal. As a result of this change, the way is prepared for the climactic events of the film’s final scene. For further examples of the ‘moral dimension’ to Hitchcock’s use of hands, see HANDS, especially the subcategory Male hands/female hands. From such hand gestures, we can readily infer a character’s feelings and impulses.