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Why I Wasn’t Interested in Hitchcock Until I Turned 40: Valuing Films as Entertainment

  • Alan McKee
Chapter
Part of the Palgrave Entertainment Industries book series (PAEI)

Abstract

Academics know how to judge a film’s success or failure as a work of art, but how would we judge its success or failure as a piece of entertainment? Using the case study of Alfred Hitchcock’s Dial M for Murder (1954) this chapter shows that film is great entertainment because no important character or story beat is missing, it is packed with such beats, and it has plenty of satisfying twists. It promotes strong emotional reactions: a continual interplay of suspense, despair and elation. It has an ending that is both happy and satisfying. And it is fun – particularly in its performances. It is important to take Hitchcock seriously as an entertainer – this chapter demonstrates how to value his films for that reason.

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alan McKee
    • 1
  1. 1.Faculty of Arts and Social SciencesUniversity of Technology SydneySydneyAustralia

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