Saturday 29 March 2014

North by Northwest

For weeks BBC Two has been televising an unsung season of Alfred Hitchcock films on weekend afternoons. So far I've managed to catch The Lady Vanishes (far better than the recent BBC version, despite technical improvements), Rear Window, Notorious and Suspicion. Today it's the turn of Hitchcock's spy thriller North by Northwest (1959) starring Cary Grant, Eva Marie Saint and James Mason. The screenplay was written by Ernest Lehman, the score by Bernard Herrmann. Graphic designer Saul Bass used groundbreaking kinetic typography in the film's opening credits (CLICK). Shown is a photo from an attempted murder sequence with Cary Grant running from a crop duster plane. The climax of the film is a fight on Mount Rushmore. Legend has it that Hitch wanted one of the villains to drop out of a president's nostril, but was refused permission. The film begins at 3.20pm.


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