• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

How does Alfred Hitchcock develop tension and shock in

Extracts from this document...


How does Alfred Hitchcock develop tension and shock in "Psycho" and "The Birds"? Alfred Hitchcock was born in 1899 in Leytonstone, East London. He enjoyed reading novels by Dickens, G K Chesterton and Edgar Allan Poe. He was fascinated in crime and would go to see murder trials. He left school when he was 14. He married Alma Reville in 1926 and they were married for over 50 years. Alma often assisted Alfred Hitchcock to make his films. In 1927, he directed a film called "The Lodger" which was a silent film. "Blackmail" (1929) was his first film with sound and was very successful. His brilliant films of the 1930s were all thrillers and included "The Thirty-Nine Steps" (1935) and "The Lady Vanishes" (1938). The two films that I am going to analyse are "Psycho" and "The Birds". He was considered a 'Master of Suspense' because he achieved the element of suspense in almost all of his films, including "Psycho". Hitchcock was a great innovator in making his films fresh even as he used common themes. Hitchcock was very specific about the use of sound effects as a means of creating suspense. Music director Bernard Herrmann was most closely linked with Alfred Hitchcock. He wrote the scores for every Hitchcock film from "The Trouble with Harry" (1955) ...read more.


The shower curtain is now visible in front of Marion because someone is coming towards her. The following shot shows a mysterious, unknown attacker coming straight for Marion in the shower. It's in a low angle medium close-up and we are able to see the attacker more clearly. The attacker's expression is not seen but the audience is sure that he/she is a frightening figure. As the curtain is wrenched back chilling screeching violin strokes are introduced to suggest stabbing movements. The next shot is a slightly high angle close up. The shower is still running when Marion finds out that she was not alone and with her eyes closed, she screamed. The closed eyes of Marion suggested that she was crying for help. The eighth shot is a slightly high angle extreme close up; this was where the mouth of Marion Crane fills the screen, the emotional impact is frightening and the music creates more tension around here. The following shot is an extreme low angle medium shot, this time it is focusing on a shadow. We are looking at the unknown attacker who is attacking Marion Crane in the shower. Next shot we see is a high angle medium shot and we see the body of Marion Crane inside the shower, the expression is that she was still being stabbed by the unknown attacker. ...read more.


The final shot is a medium long shot which shows that Melanie finally gets out of the phone and runs into the cafe for more safety in case more birds attack. Alfred Hitchcock uses many cinematic techniques to create suspense and shock in "Psycho" and "The Birds". These techniques include Voyeurism, careful manipulation of the camera and brilliant balancing of calm and tense moments. All of these combined to make the films memorable. His impressive uses of cinematic techniques make his films classic, and have earned him the title, Master of Suspense. One of the differences of these films is that one of them is black and white and one of them is colour. "Psycho" is black and white because it was made quite early. "The Birds" is colour because it came much later than Psycho when colour effect on television and film had been invented. Another key difference is that "Psycho" uses a limited number of shocks. The reason for it was that Hitchcock wanted to keep up the tension and suspense for the audience before the shock. However, in "The Birds", the director kept on giving shocks, to keep the film fast paced. I preferred "The Birds" as my enjoyable film of Alfred Hitchcock because it is livelier and more interesting than "Psycho". It is fast paced and doesn't keep much tension and suspense as it gets the film going by giving it a lot of action. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Writing to Inform, Explain and Describe section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Writing to Inform, Explain and Describe essays

  1. How the film Jaws creates tension

    In the shot we see him, and as one person walks past the camera concealing Brody it cuts to a closer scene of Brody, this is repeated twice, and ends up as a very close shot of Brody. This gives you a feel that you as an audience are getting

  2. How successful are the authors of short-stories you have studied in creating tension and ...

    In response to this revelation of who he truly is napoleon is speechless and worried as he fears nothing yet here he trembles. Napoleons bold nature does burst through though but again this 'presence' makes him uneasy and again he is stripped of title and importance and reduced ever lower

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work