Shadow Of A Doubt Suspense Analysis

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Hitchcock tends to define suspense in his films by "concern for how a character will respond to a threat about which the audience is already informed. Here, viewers feel suspense for the character rather than fright or shock with the character, [unlike his definition of surprise]" (Cohen 126). In this article, Cohen talks about a second kind of suspense, which she calls conceptual suspense. She describes it as "extending the suspense situation into a larger social/historical arena. This type of suspense makes it possible for certain films to continue to be suspenseful not only when the outcome is known but also when supposedly realistic elements in the film no longer reflect the contemporary practice" (Cohen 127). When watching Shadow of a Doubt through the lens of …show more content…
Her uncle says she knows too much and that she can't live because of it. In the struggle against her uncle for her life, he loses his footing and she pushes him off the train instead, killing him immediately. This whole scene is suspenseful because the viewer has no idea what is going to happen and they fear for Charlie's life with her. In a way, I view this movie and conceptual suspense as one of those films where the character has no idea where the outcome will take him or her and the audience knows what is going to happen so while the character can't hear the viewer, they're screaming in suspense at the scene to keep him or her from doing whatever stupid thing the audience knows they're about to do. I find using conceptual suspense to create a film than just a little bit of suspense and some surprise. I find it makes those films uninteresting to watch after the first viewing. There is nothing new to feel for the character as with regular horror films. In Shadow of a Doubt, I feel the audience will not lose interest and will continue to feel that suspense and concern for the character, instead of with the character, for years to

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