Saturday, 23 April 2011

Review - North by Northwest (1959 - Dir. Alfred Hitchcock)

To an older generation this film would be classed as mainstream. To a younger generation, who have never seen it, you are missing a treat. Cary Grant plays Roger Thornhill, well, Cary Grant really, a man mistaken for a secret agent by James Mason and his crew of suit-wearing henchmen. 

Hitchcock is on top form with this film. There are so many great moments. Standouts include a chase sequence in a corn field (culminating in my favourite film explosion), a comedy auction and a climax on a famous American landmark. There are some great double entendres in the film, especially on a train journey with Eva Marie Saint. Also, there is a cheeky end shot to the film. 

I've had this on DVD for quite a few years and have recently bought it on Blu-ray. It was like watching a different film. The colours and the sense of scale are breathtaking, not to mention the excellent score by Bernard Herrmann never sounding better. Younger readers: ignore/embrace some suspect rear projection shots, relax into a slower pace of editing, enjoy the gentle humour and prepare yourself for a classic that still holds up to this day.


If you like this you could try:
To Catch a Thief, Suspicion, Rear Window, Rebecca

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