First Hit: This film is for older people because if you don’t remember his films or TV show, this film isn’t much to watch.
Alfred Hitchcock (played by Anthony Hopkins) directed many great films from thrillers to mysteries to horrors to dramas.
This film begins after the success of his film North by Northwest which starred Cary Grant and Eva Marie Saint. He’s searching for a film to do and finds the book Psycho which is a horror story. He buys all the available copies so that no one will know the ending until they see the film.
However Paramount films won’t finance the film because, to them, they think it is a cheap type of film. They want another North by Northwest. Anyway this story focuses on his relationship with this wife Alma Reville (played by Helen Mirren), how they work together, and his fantasies about being with sexy blonds. This point is made in the film because his previous films co-star (Eva Marie Saint) won’t work with him again. The film is also about his creative genius and abilities to make a film work.
In Psycho Janet Leigh (played by Scarlett Johansson) is the femme-fatal and has a wonderful working relationship with Hitchcock. Alma has an admirer who likes working with her, but although she likes working with him she doesn’t want to have an affair.
Hitchcock has some very odd mannerisms and his way of speaking is halting and direct. He is also shown here as obsessed with food and ice cream. I do recall his films when they came out and I also use to watch his television program – but here I saw a version of Hitchcock the human and it was interesting.
Hopkins played an interesting Hitchcock and without knowing much about the man, I found it interesting and disturbing in the way he acted and responded to people. Mirren was fabulous as Alma, the woman who loved and was a major creative force in Hitchcock’s life. Johansson was really good as Janet Leigh’s character. John J. McLaughlin wrote an interesting and informative screenplay. Sacha Gervasi did have a clear vision for this film but it felt limited in execution.
Overall: I enjoyed the film but it is probably for a selected audience.