Saturday, October 29, 2005

Embarrassment of Riches

Turner Classic Movies is the gem of any cable line-up. No commercials - no editing - no pan-and-scan. Each movie is presented the way it was meant to be seen.

I have my TiVo set to be on the lookout for any movies directed by Alfred Hitchcock, and this past week it scored the mother-load. Some kind of festival must have been going on, because in the last five days, I've tivoed (and have yet to watch):

Dial M For Murder
Number Seventeen
The Lady Vanishes
Shadow of a Doubt
Strangers on a Train
Bon Voyage
and Frenzy.

I've always loved the work of Hitchcock - but I have to admit that I've only seen his most popular movies: Psycho, Dial M for Murder, The Birds. This gives me a chance to catch up on the movies he's done that I never got around to renting and watching.

And it's fun! I already watched part of Spellbound, and it's just incredible. Ingrid Bergman and Gregory Peck are both at the height of their beauty - during the whole movie I simply wonder why they didn't get together and have baby after baby - can you imagine how attractive and talented those babies would have been?

Super babies!

Hitchcock's direction always stands out. It can seem cheesy at times (I don't need to see people drinking milk from the perspective of the person drinking milk) but it's original (even seems original today) and keeps you interested.

The music in his movies - while never exactly the same - always seems similar, with the sympathetic strings next to the foreboding brass section. Spellbound makes use of a theremin; who in their right mind uses a theremin? (except every cheesy horror movie)

So, if I don't blog for a couple of days, you'll know why.


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