Saturday, January 8, 2011

Shadow of a Doubt

Today, I'm just going to give you a film recommendation:

See SHADOW OF A DOUBT.  I have about 100 'favorite' films but this one's right near the top.   It's got EVERYTHING.   I own it and rarely get bored from seeing it again and again.............If you get Netflix, put it on your list, you won't be sorry.

Have a good Saturday....I'm still sick.  (oh, and get the singles vaccine)

z

48 comments:

Anonymous said...

Does the singles vaccine keep a person from being single? Hehe.

FrogBurger said...

Saw 127 hours yesterday evening. Awesome film where you get pulled it and are going through some serious emotional changes like I've never been.
It entered my top 10, if not the top 5, despite the few minutes of gore.

Ducky's here said...

I'll have to take another look, z. I'm a huge Hitchcock fan but I've never paid much attention to this one. Maybe time for a reevaluation.

Anonymous said...

I'm a Hitchcock fan too. I have seen Shadow of a Doubt a few times over the years.

My favorite Hitchcock films are, North by Northwest and Psycho. I do like suspense thrillers.

Pris

Z said...

Anonymous, I don't know...does being anonymous completely relieve someone of any sensitivity?

FB, never heard of it..new?

Ducky, it's Hitchcock's favorite.

Pris, me, too.

FrogBurger said...

Yes, new. Low budget 18m but amazing. Dir. Danny Boyle.

Anonymous said...

The shingles vaccine is $250.00 & is not covered by Medicare. Found out about it my last check-up.

'Shadow' is an interesting film as a time capsule of a small town, as well as suspensful. But I have to say that the mother & father drive me over the edge, so it's not easy for me to watch, but I do. She's the archetypal silly, featherheaded, dithering female, & he's a ninny. Joseph Cotton makes up for them, though. A great villain, & I always admired him as an actor. He worked very well with Orson Welles in 'Kane'.

I patronized the same wine/liquor store Hitchcock did in Bev. Hills, & the manager told me he had a wine cellar adorned with fake spider webs! Why was I not surprised? YUCK!

Silvrlady

Craig said...

Big Hitchcock fan here, too also. "Notorious" is still my fav. "Rear Window"is right up there and "Trouble With Harry" is still amusing. Anyone interested in a good Hitchcock biography, "Dark Side of Genius" by Donald Spoto.

Bachmann 2012!

Always On Watch said...

A great film! Joseph Cotten gives a magnificent performance.

Always On Watch said...

Duck,
Really?

This film was supposedly Hitch's personal favorite of all his films.

Always On Watch said...

I can't say which of Hitch's films I like the best.

I used to say that Psycho was, but I've seen it so very many times.

I admit to liking Rope: the long tapes and the Leopold & Loeb connection. This year, I've recommended the film to my world literature class as we're presently studying Crime and Punishment.

Z said...

SilvrLady, it's a VERY small price to pay. Don't think twice. There are situations that arise after shingles that sometimes don't leave you... I know.
Don't risk it.

Anonymous said...

"Anonymous, I don't know...does being anonymous completely relieve someone of any sensitivity?"

Z, I agree. Although I have a feeling anonymous was relieved of any sensitivity long ago if he ever possessed it in the first place.

Pris

Anonymous said...

There aint much sensitivity on this blog by many of the most vocal participants anyway, although I suppose that's often a matter of which side you are on. And anonymity does insulate one a little from that effect. But I thought the singles pun was sort of cute -- couldn't resist. Very sorry you are suffering so from shingles of course.

Jen said...

I'll put it on the queue, Z.
I'm always looking for good movies to add.

Ducky's here said...

Just one of those things, AOW. North by Northwest is definitely my favorite of his. Notorious, Vertigo and the earlier work, Lady vanishes, 39 Steps but his middle period leaves me a little cold.

I've got it in my library and should give it another look.

christian soldier said...

thanks for the head up on the film "Shadow of a Doubt"---

you may want to check your final sentence...(...singles vaccination...)
I believe you meant (..shingles..)..
and that is what - I believe-
Anon is referring to..
So sorry you are still suffering with that condition...
I did not know that there were long term repercussions from it...

Hugs and xo-Get Well My Friend!
Carol-CS

Anonymous said...

I looked up shingles and I can see why you might be impatient with silly puns on a typo so I wish to say I'm sorry and I hope you recover soon. I knew shingles was very painful but now I know there can be a lot more to it. Please get well.

Anonymous said...

Off topic, but we are due to have an ice storm tonight. Wreaks havoc with tree limbs & power lines. We have gas appliances, but no pilots, so I hope the generator will crank. Fingers crossed. Happily, we have a fireplace with a blower that will help heat the house. BRRRR!

Hooray, the Seahawks beat N'Awlins!

Silvrlady

Z said...

Anonymous, thanks...you might not know I lost my husband last year, so "single" felt worse than it might have.
I'm sorry I jumped down your throat, I really don't feel well and it wasn't very nice of me. :-)

Maybe on Monday I'll do a FAVORITE FILMS blog again.....and some of you can chime in...that's always a big help.
You won't believe this, but I have a Netflix account and LITERALLY can almost not find films in the genres I like that I haven't seen :-( That's AWFUL!! I watched my copy of THE WOMEN today, it's fabulous.

Anonymous said...

Charles Laughton as Henry VIII, & also as Rembrandt. The original Dracula, 'Nosferatu', & Elmo Lincoln as the original Tarzan is a scream. Of course, Valentino rolling his eyeballs in what was thought to be a lecherous fashion was great fun, too.

My grandmother was in silent films, & I only wish I could see one of those.

I used to go to the Silent Movie Theatre on Fairfax Ave in L.A., sit on hard wooden seats, & sometime during the screening the 'aroma' of what I thought was canned 'Dinty Moore Beef Stew' would waft through the auditorium. It was always the same smell. I don't know if the place is still in existence.

Silvrlady

Ducky's here said...

Silvrlady, The Silent Theater (a national treasure) still exists. It managed to go until 2002 showing ONLY silents.

Anonymous said...

Shadow of a Doubt is one of my great favorites too, Z. The juxtaposition of normal everyday family life in a lovely town like Santa Rosa with the great evil that lurks in the heart of a favorite-but-rarely-seen uncle makes this Hitchcock film more realistic and less sensationalistic than some of his others. It has an intimate quality about it that gives it more heart than many of his others.

I greatly admire the performance of the under-rated actress Patricia Collinge. Her "ditheriness," as someone put it, is a perfect foil to the mounting tension that creeps into the ordinary domestic scene insidiously at first then finally comes to dominate.

I love the plain, very smart, bratty little sister, and the father's ordinariness again is a good part of what makes it all work.

The only artificial element I've found is the "murder game" business between Hume Cronyn's nerdy little character and the father. That does seem gratuitous after twelve or fifteen viewings.

The opening scene with Joe Cotton on the lam in that seedy boardinghouse and his confrontation later with his niece Charlie in the seedy downtown bar where they meet the dreary wistful waitress who'd been a classmate of Charlie's are brilliant and give the film a great deal of its sinister atmosphere.

I'm a classical music buff, as you know, and more and more these old films are getting to be like the symphonies and concerti I listen to over and over again and never get tired of.

Joseph Cotton and all the ret of them are superb, but Theresa Wright's performance as Charlie makes the film as far as I'm concerned. Theresa Wright i another underrated actress who deserves more recognition.

Macdonald Carey never made a convincing suitor for Theresa Wright's Charlie to me, but his homeliness and ungainliness at least do nothing to damge the film.

The Lady Vanishes, The 39 Steps, Notorious, Rear Window and Dial M for Murder, Spellbound, also Suspicion have always been my favorites among Hitchcock's work. The first version of The Man Who Knew Too Much (Don't care all that much for Doris Day in the remake) ranks high.

To Catch a Thief is great fun, but only the opening scenes of North by Northwest last for me. The rest of it goes down hill -- especially after the encounter with the crop duster in the bare cornfield. The ending of North by Northwest has never seemed convincing to me.

Sorry, but Rope is my least favorite Hitchcock. It's too plainly vicious, and the suffocating atmosphere created by its highly unlikable characters does not make for great entertainment.

Family Plot is next on the list of least favorites with Marnie trailing far behind. Marnie should have been played by Grace Kelly. Tippi Hedren with her tinny little voice and wooden acting was a poor substitute -- and a very poor match for Sean Connery, who seemed miscast anyway.

I have a special fondness for Psycho, because the MUSIC is so outstanding. The film would be nothing without it.

So, yes, Z I too an watch these ;pictures over and over an never get bored even though I've known "whodunnit" since the 1950's.

Anyone besides me love Jessie Royce Landis who played the mother in both North by Northwest and To Catch a Thief? She was a wonderful character actress.

~ FreeThinke

PS:Thanks for the tip on that vaccine, Z. I didn't even know such a thing was available at any price. Now I wonder why my doctor has never mentioned it? Hmmmmm. Do get well soon. - FT

Anonymous said...

WOW! This is too weird a coincidence not to mention:

The "code word" we have to type in in order to get posted was SHINGL in the last go 'round.

Can you BELIEVE that?

Amazing!

~ FT

Always On Watch said...

Duck,
Just a little factoid here: I do recommend to my students that they should read DuMaurier's Rebecca and watch the Hitchcock film of the same title. My students have never been disappointed in either the novella or the film -- and typically my students don't like b&w films.

Anonymous said...

Thanks, AOW, I'd forgotten Rebecca was directed by Hitchcock. The performers are so strong and so fine they overshadow the director for once. Laurence Olivier, Judith Anderson, George Sanders ... It doesn't get any better than that.

So, of course, Rebecca is high on my list of favorites.

I'm pretty old, and I'm sure that makes a difference, but I generally prefer black and white movies from the '30's and '40's. B&W seem to have more "class" for want of a better term. Also, by working within a set of strict imitations they tend to bring out more ingenuity, imagination, artistic camera angles, use of light and dark, etc. than their more literalistic counterparts.

I deeply resented it when the colorizing" process reared its ugly head and started to violate and spoil the beauty of classic cinema with what-I-saw-as obscene gimmickry.

No one can improve on perfection, so a colorized Spellbound, Shadow of a Doubt or Rebecca would be a desecration.

Maybe that's why I never liked The Man Who Knew Too Much in it's second version as well as I liked the original.

FreeThinke

Anonymous said...

Speaking of 'colorizing', can you name the only film that can never be subjected to that indignity? A hint: Joseph Cotton was in it.

Silvrlady

Z said...

AOW ..you say "and typically my students don't like b&w films."

Isn't that awful. When I flip through the channels, I rarely stop at a color film; all that awful sixties/seventies stuff gets to me!

I often wonder what today's girls think when they do get an opportunity to watch b/w films and see the dignity men treated women with, how the men cherished them and treated them well and fought to get THEM. I wonder if that sinks in or it's lost to them today.

REBECCA is one of my favorites, too.

FT, how in the world can actors not overshadow a director? I have never watched a film and thought "Gee, all I see is the direction here.." I'd love to know what you mean there, interesting comment.

SilvLady...AMBERSONS?

I can't STAND colorizing...the very VERY worst example is the original FATHER OF THE BRIDE....all the bridesmaids' bouquets are like silver fake crap...it's so bad!!!
I LOVE b/w film....so rich, so textured........colorization is so cheap.

Anonymous said...

I can't imagine my favorite film of all time, Casablanca, in color. However, I can't imagine Gone With the Wind, in black and white.

Wizard of Oz was done in both, very effectively.

I just watched a new movie this last week, The Book of Eli on HBO, a very good film IMO. It was done in sepia tones which suited it very well. I recommend it, not that I'm any expert, however I've watched it twice already. It stars Denzel Washington, and Gary Oldman.

Pris

Anonymous said...

Nope, not 'Ambersons'.

Silvrlady

Always On Watch said...

Silvrlady,
Speaking of 'colorizing', can you name the only film that can never be subjected to that indignity? A hint: Joseph Cotton was in it.

Was it Hush, Hush, Sweet Charlotte?

Always On Watch said...

Z,
In my view, sometimes b&w films are more believable.

Anonymous said...

Not that one.

Silvrlady

Ducky's here said...

AOW, how do your students react to Mrs. Danvers' obvious lesbianism?

That scene where she points out Rebecca's lingerie drawer does as much in a few seconds as some directors do in twenty minutes.

It is a shame that the contemporary audience usually can't watch B&W. I always make B&W at least 60% of my class along with silent film. I think Godard is one of the very few who can work brilliantly in both B&W and color. The number of directors who have become self indulgent in color from Fellini to Kubrick to Truffaut is an interesting topic. Interesting that most of them had their great days in B&W.

Anonymous said...

From a film blog:

'Orson Welles actually sent a letter to Turner Home Entertainment shortly before his death. At the time Turner had annouced his "color" process. I'm not sure if any of the films had been completed yet. Anyway, Welles said this regarding 'Kane',
"Keep Ted Turner and his Goddamned crayons away from my picture." '

I had to hunt to find the quote, but had heard it years ago from a friend who was a dyed-in-the-wool film buff & collector.

Silvrlady

Z said...

Ducky, how important to a class is "Mrs. Danvers' obvious lesbianism"?
We all know she's DEEPLY attached to Rebecca and, with Rebecca's morals, if you want to 'go there' (which is completely unnecessary to the story) it's not a stretch to think they were lovers together, though not 'lovers' but hedonists. That Rebecca didn't know what love even was is a theme, after all.


SilvrLady...Citizen Kane? I can't watch that film anyway, but I sure wouldn't like it in color.

Z said...

oh, DAMN! I posted my comment, then saw the number of comments had gone from 34 to 36 so someone else had commented and you TOLD ME while I was commenting :-)

Well, I DID get it right! I did post my comment after yours!
Thanks, that's a great quote!

Z said...

BY the way, Anonymous...if you're the wonderful Anonymous and not the angry one, please get an account so I can know it's you! It's easy to get a google account and just pick a name, etc. Or add an initial at the bottom...I suppose others can usurp the initial but at least I'd know.
I'm very happy you comment here and am, again, sorry I blew off at you....being unwell has my wick a little shorter.

Anonymous said...

A rarely seen Welles film is 'Othello'. Some remarkable shots. Welles truly was an 'enfant terrible', but brilliant.

Silvrlady

Anonymous said...

Good point, Pris, about GWTW, The Wizard of Oz, and Casablanca. I agree completely. I didn't mean to imply there was NO appropriate use of color, only to say that in general I prefer the B&W movies from the late '30's into the early '50's.

1939 appears to have been THE greatest year in motion picture history. Has Hollywood ever produced so many first-rate films in one year again?

About directors: Z, I agree that the performers easily make the deepest impression on audiences, but in Hitchcock's case he usually left a personal stamp on his work that makes it all-but-impossible not to realize that this is a HITCHCOCK film we're watching.

Rebecca seems different because the story, itself, based on a very well-written book by Daphne DuMaurier, is stronger than the story in most of the other Hitchcock films. Rebecca almost falls more easily into the film noir category than it does into the typical mystery cum adventure story Hitch was known for. In Rebecca, except for the burning of Manderlay at the end, there is a lack of physical adventure -- even the sinking of the boat is talked about only in retrospect -- not relived before our eyes.

Funny! I've known Rebecca all my life, and it never occurred to me that Mrs. Danvers was a lesbian. Creepy and cruel without a conscience to be sure, but to associate anything sexual with her is impossible. It would be like making love to a reptile.

Silver Lady, I LOVE your Orson Welles quote to or about Ted Turner! And I am a great admirer of Welles too. He was a tremendous artist -- one of the best we've produced -- but he peaked early, grew fat and ugly, was somehow marginalized and died much too young. Who knows why? He bucked the Hollywood Establishment. Joe McCarthy tried that too -- and look what happened to HIM!!!

I'm pretty sure Citizen Kane must be the film that cannot by law be colorized -- am I right?

~ FreeThinke

Z said...

FT, I agree about Danvers...some people think you don't have a great film without something like that..I don't.
I think it's even MORE riveting to consider her deep infatuation for Rebecca on another level not sexual at all. good call

Anonymous said...

TCM ran 'The Third Man' this afternoon. What a coincidence!

Yes, Free Thinker, it is 'Kane'.

Silvrlady

Leticia said...

I am also a Hitchcock fan and just yesterday watched, "Topaz" pretty good.

I will see if our local Blockbuster has it.

Anonymous said...

Does anyone know what Hitchcock's very first film was? I'm sure it was British, but was there anything before The Lady Vanishes and The 39 Steps? And which of those came first?

~ FreeThinke

Always On Watch said...

Duck,
AOW, how do your students react to Mrs. Danvers' obvious lesbianism?

Well, my students didn't pick up on that possibility.

The same goes for those students who read The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson.

Anonymous said...

From Wikipedia:

'As a director: British silent filmsYear Title Production Company Other notes
1922 No. 13* Wardour & F. unfinished; believed lost
1923 Always Tell Your Wife* Seymour Hicks Productions uncredited; only one of two reels survive
1925 The Pleasure Garden Gainsborough Pictures/
Münchner Lichtspielkunst AG (Emelka) Worldwide rights: Granada International
UK DVD distributor: Network DVD (2008 Hitchcock: The British Years boxset release)
1926 The Mountain Eagle* Gainsborough Pictures/
Münchner Lichtspielkunst AG (Emelka) aka Fear o' God (US); lost
1927 The Lodger: A Story of the London Fog Gainsborough Pictures/
Carlyle Blackwell Productions Worldwide rights: Granada International
UK DVD distributor: Network DVD (2008 Hitchcock: The British Years boxset release)
US DVD distributor: MGM
1927 The Ring'


Silvrlady

There were a lot of earlier credits, but not as a director.

Ducky's here said...

Freethinker, he worked extensively in silent film. Lionsgate has a nice box set out of his early work.

I'd be sure to take a look at "The Lodger".

Ducky's here said...

Yeah, AOW, that's why we revisit films. It's like watching "The Lady Vanishes" without a grounding in the start of WW II or the English class structure, which he really despised.