To me "Psycho" was a big comedy. Had to be.'
'You can't direct a Laughton picture. The best you can hope for is to referee.'
'Film your murders like love scenes, and film your love scenes like murders.' Does that also work in the crime writing world?
He says about "North by Northwest". 'Our original title, you know, was "The Man in Lincoln's Nose". Couldn't use it, though. They also wouldn't let us shoot people on Mount Rushmore. Can't deface a national monument. And it's a pity, too, because I had a wonderful shot in mind of Cary Grant hiding in Lincoln's nose and having a sneezing fit.'
Brian, my friend, finally casts his vote as best film to 'The Birds' where birds of all sorts start behaving like football hooligans. You can argue about this at dinner parties but here are a few facts of no consequence whatsoever to boost your argument.
It was advertised by the line ;'Suspense and shock beyond anything you have seen or imagined!'
The film starts off with Tippi Hedrin and Rod Taylor indulging in some romantic nonsense that makes you wonder why they had no work to go to. Tippi is also good at that 'running in tight skirt and stilettos combo' which should be an Olympic event. She also rows in that skirt. No comment.
This is Tippi preparing for the triathalon.
My favourite bit is when the school teacher got her eyes pecked out. But that reflects how I feel about teachers.
In the early 60's Hitchcock was planning to get to work on 'No bail for the judge' but Audrey Hepburn got pregnant. Then he was doing a treatment for Winston Grahams novel 'Marnie' to star Grace Kelly but she wanted to stay being a princess and refused the film in the end. He had the rights to The Birds' which had appeared as a short story by Daphne du Maurier in Good Housekeeping magazine in 1952.
The film is interesting in many ways. The hanging ending of The Birds is an antidote to the end of Psycho, where a psychiatrist witters on for ages about the whys and the hows. If you haven't seen it for a while just listen to the way the music doesn't punctuate the action, there is no opening music at all, just birds screeching and squawking. There are large periods of silence when the tension just sits and waits... and waits.... For over twenty minutes near the end , hardly a word is spoken. Brian has calculated the carnage begins 49 minutes into the film. The school house attack is 70 minutes in. It adds up to 103 minutes of folk getting pecked at. He makes an interesting point, it was not normal for Hollywood to harm kids in films. Yet in the schoolhouse scene all of them are at risk, everybody is equally terrified. Brian said that Hitchcock was reflecting the fact that war is indiscriminate.
Brian voted it best because of its sheer tension which builds for no reason as there is no solution. It's a relentless, harrowing journey that leads absolutely nowhere.
The bit where the birds attack the village was voted by Bravo as the 96th Scariest Movie Moment.
So sit down and have a wee glass of vino and watch it again. As the other tag line says...'The next scream you hear could be your own!
Caro GB 8th of March