The Similarities of Alfred Hitchcock and Edward Hopper
Alfred Hitchcock, also known as, “The Master of Suspense”, was a director to a variety of award winning films. Many Hitchcock movies will be noticeably inspired by numerous paintings, including the work of iconic artist Edward Hopper. Hopper, born in New York, was well known for his realist paintings. Comparing the paintings and films, one will see the similarities displayed between the two. Alfred Hitchcock and Edward Hopper are linked by creating an eerie mood through their use of lighting, composition, and viewpoint. Both Hitchcock and Hopper tend to use dark lighting with shadows as well as isolating a small group of people seen from an ‘outside looking in’ point of view. Edward Hopper is able to capture suspense in his paintings and he does this through his use of lighting. He casts shadows and darkness in particular paintings in order to convey the mood he wishes to achieve. In his most famous painting, “Nighthawks”, Hopper uses shadows as a technique to create a strange feeling for the scene. The only light in the painting appears to be coming from the diner itself. It casts shadows on the outside which makes the viewer wonder what will happen next. Because it is dark, there is something eerie about why these people are up so late at night. Similar to Hopper, Hitchcock uses mysterious shadows to create this particular mood. This is seen through a still image of his movie “Rear Window”. During this scene, the main character Jeff, who is a wheel chair bound photojournalist, is confronted by Lars Thorwald, a traveling jewelry salesman who Jeff believes murdered someone. Lars shows up in Jeff’s apartment and the lighting cast upon him is dark. His figure is clearly there but the shadows cover his face completely, which helps to show this mysterious, eerie mood. Unlike Hopper, Hitchcock has an advantage of placing sound into the scene which adds to the atmosphere of uncertainty. If it had been day time or...
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