Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Movie of the Week - Frenzy

This week’s movie is Frenzy (1972).

The thriller is about a man, Richard Blaney, who is wrongly accused and tried for murdering his ex-wife, among other women, as the necktie-murderer. Now, he must avert the cops, get help from his friends and stay alive as he tries desperately to clear his name and find the real killer. The film is directed by Alfred Hitchcock and is his last masterpiece. With cinematographer Gilbert Taylor, Hitchcock makes a very visual film – there is a fantastic shot where the camera pulls away from an expectant murder, comes down the stairs, out the door and into the street revealing that London is going on as usual, not a thought or care for the gruesomeness that is occurring just within the building. Despite being one of Hitchcock’s more graphic films, it is also quite funny too. Hitchcock and writer Anthony Shaffer have infused humor through everyday life so that it flows out of the film naturally. The score by Rod Goodwin is also wonderful and perfect. Jon Finch, Alec McCowen, Barry Foster, Anna Massey, and Barbara Leigh-Hunt star and they are all great in their roles. It is not a very well known cast, unlike many of Hitchcock’s films, but they are well cast for the roles. What makes Frenzy great is the juxtaposition of humor and violence, of mundane life and thrilling outliers such as serial killers and murder, and of man and what he wants and what he must do. Mistaken identity is a ploy Hitchcock uses a lot, but here it is done maybe to its most thrilling end. This is a must see for fans of thrillers and Hitchcock. Check out the trailer.

Available on DVD on Amazon.com  

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