Alfred Hitchcock Essay 2

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Alfred Joseph Hitchcock, or ‘The Master of Suspense’, was born in August 13, 1899, in Leytonstone, London, England. He was a British filmmaker and producer who, in his 50 year career, greatly contributed to filmmaking’s growth as an art. His brilliance was sometimes too bright: He was hated as well as loved, oversimplified as well as overanalyzed. Hitchcock was eccentric, challenging, creative, and impassioned. Hitchcock started working as a title card designer for the London branch of what would become Paramount Pictures. In 1920 he got a full time position at Islington Studios, designing the titles for silent movies. From there it took him 5 years to rise from title designer to film director, and by the end of 1930s he had become one of the most famous filmmakers in England. In 1923 Hitchcock took his first shot at directing with the film ‘The Number 13’. However the production was stopped and he was unable to complete it. His first completed film as a director was ‘The Pleasure Garden’ (1925) which was a commercial flop. In 1926 Alfred Hitchcock made his breakthrough with his first thriller, ‘The Lodger’. This film was a perfect example of the classic Hitchcock plot: an innocent protagonist is falsely accused of a crime and becomes involved in a web of intrigue. Hitchcock went on to make many films in the UK including ‘Blackmail’ (which was promoted as Britain’s first full-length talkie), ‘The Man Who Knew Too Much’, ‘The 39 Steps’ and ‘The Lady Vanishes’. ‘The 39 Steps’ was one of the first to introduce the concept of the “MacGuffin”, a plot device around which a whole story seems to revolve, but ultimately has nothing to do with the true meaning or ending of the story (In this case, a stolen set of design plans). In 1939 he moved to the United States, starting his career in Hollywood. His first American film was ‘Rebecca’ (1940) starring Laurence Oliver, Joan Fontaine, and Judith Anderson in an adaptation of the Daphne du Maurier's best-selling novel. The...
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