Thursday, 2 August 2012

Capital Celluloid 2012 - Day 216: Sat Aug 4

Young and Innocent (Hitchcock, 1937): BFI Southbank, NFT1, 4pm

This early Alfred Hitchcock film, which is screening as part of the director's season at BFI Southbank, is also being shown on August 18th and 22nd. This was one of my five picks for the Guardian of underrated Hitchcock films not to be missed this summer. You can read my thoughts on the quintet of movies via the web here and this is what I had to say about Young and Innocent:
'The attention devoted to The 39 Steps (1935) and The Lady Vanishes(1938) has ensured that Young and Innocent has remained the poor relation of Hitchcock's three 1930s comedy thrillers – but it's not hard to see why this hugely enjoyable film was reportedly Hitchcock's personal favourite among his 23 British movies. The class elements, so central to his best British films, abound in a double-chase story, involving an innocent man wrongly accused of strangling a famous actress and his involvement with the alluring daughter of the chief constable charged with recapturing him. There are plot points and directorial flourishes here that would resurface in his more mature masterpieces The Birds (1963) and North By Northwest (1959) while the birthday party sequence introduces us to Aunt Margaret, one of Hitchcock's formidable matriarchs. It's worth the price of admission alone to see on the big screen the most famous single piece of camerawork of Hitchcock's British output, the marvellous travelling crane shot which takes the audience the full length of a hotel ballroom and into the eyes of the man the protagonists are desperately searching for.'
Here is an extract.

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