The Hitchcock Project


Over the years, I have watched many Alfred Hitchcock movies. Or at least, I thought I had. I’d seen the stone cold classics: from the 1950’s masterpieces such as ‘Vertigo’ and ‘Rear Window’,  to the early British ‘The 39 Steps’ and ‘Blackmail’. But how many more were there? Why hadn’t I seen more? Were they not worth watching? Or was I missing out on untold and unseen excitements that would enrich my life even further?

A few weeks ago it occured to me that there many Hitchcock’s I hadn’t seen and I started ticking off exactly which I had seen and which, for whatever reason, had passed me by.

I started some extensive research. This involved me walking to the bookcase and pulling out the classic ‘Hitchcock by Truffaut’ book and counting.

And what did I find? Between 1926 and 1976 Alfred Hitchcock made 53 movies. 53? Darn it, if only it had been 52 I could watch one a week for a year. Hmmm. I embarked on even more in depth research. This involved  actually reading some of the Truffaut book…

And what did I then find?

One of the movies is lost. ‘The Mountain Eagle’ his second film from 1926, does not exist anymore. In fact, the Truffaut book featured 6 stills from it and these are believed to be pretty much the only images of the film still in existence. I believe the bfi (British Film Institute) in 2010 are making one last effort to see if they can locate this title, but hopes are low…

I will watch 52 films in 52 weeks. 1 film a week, in chronological order.

A Project.

In 2010 The Hitchcock Project will go ‘live’ on this blog and I will update this week by week throughout the year. This blog will undoubtedly spread into other areas (a quiz? Various best-ofs etc. – plus the 2010 ‘Alfreds’) and any thoughts and suggestions that come in will be very welcome.

The Hitchcock Project is a personal reaction to the films. I will not list cast and technical lists or give in depth plot summaries unless they’re relevent – you can find out all this stuff elsewhere. Or, even, watch the films yourself…

Robin Guise, December 2009

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One Response to “About”

  1. Robbie Mills Says:

    Hi Robin,
    Robbie Mills here (your storyboard artist on Wiggle, Barbie, Narnia, Rio etc). Was just looking at your Lipsync staff profiles and found your Hitchcock project – Fabulous! An amazing endeavour. It has inspired me to watch more of his films and properly ‘watch and listen’ to them in the way you describe. It’s interesting to read your point of view as a film maker, analysing the shots and camera moves, not just story and character as most critics would. I am a self-confessed compulsive list-maker so thoroughly enjoyed your ‘best/worst of’ section. My taste in film is very broad but I lean towards sci-fi, probably because of the extra imagination and concept art that goes into it. I am a major Bond-geek and was delighted to find myself sitting next to Bond director John Glen at a friend’s dinner party a few weeks ago. Trying to pretend that I was a normal person and make general chit-chat was excruciating but after John realised I knew of many of his former colleagues behind and in front of the camera, he spent the whole evening sharing wonderful anecdotes until our wives dragged us home. Any way, thanks for the fascinating reading. I have only scratched the surface so far. I may attempt to do the same with the 22 Bond films! Best wishes, Robbie.

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