SPELLBOUND
1945, Walt Disney Co., 111 min, USA, Dir: Alfred Hitchcock

When bespectacled psychiatrist Ingrid Bergman discovers Gregory Peck is not the famous visiting shrink, Dr. Edwardes but a traumatized amnesiac, she suddenly realizes she’s in love with him. But is Peck a victim of circumstance or the missing doctor’s killer? Director Alfred Hitchcock tackles Freudian territory as well as repressed memories (ably abetted by Surrealist Salvador Dali, who designed the startling dream sequence) and seamlessly blends the elements into a romantic and suspenseful spellbinder.


THE MAN WHO KNEW TOO MUCH (1956)
1956, Universal, 120 min, USA, Dir: Alfred Hitchcock

Alfred Hitchcock remakes his own entertaining but lightweight 1934 thriller as a melancholy examination of the pleasures and nightmares of family life. When the son of James Stewart and Doris Day is kidnapped while on vacation, the couple’s long-simmering resentments threaten to get in the way of their attempts to rescue him. Although the film is rightly celebrated for setpieces like the famous Albert Hall assassination sequence, the depth of Hitchcock’s vision is more effectively felt in the film’s quieter moments: The scene in which Stewart tells Day their son has been kidnapped is one of the most powerful in all of Hitchcock’s cinema.


THE WRONG MAN
1956, Warner Bros., 105 min, USA, Dir: Alfred Hitchcock

Henry Fonda plays real-life jazz musician Emanuel Balestrero, an innocent man who is one day sucked into a whirlpool of circumstantial guilt and left to drown in New York’s criminal justice system. This seldom-seen gem by director Alfred Hitchcock, a grim orphan amongst his glossy 1950s confections, was shot entirely on-site in the locations where the story actually happened, and it expertly draws the viewer into the nightmare of the falsely accused. Hitchcock was famously paranoid of anything and everything to do with the police, and those fears reach their zenith of expression here. With Vera Miles and Anthony Quayle excellent in supporting roles.


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