SCARE TACTICS: SIX BY HITCHCOCK
August 28-31, 2014
The Lone Star Film Society's ArthouseFW and the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth finish out the summer with an exciting series showcasing six pivotal Alfred Hitchcock films. The selected films explore the power of Hitchcock's distinctive style in two of his nine silent films and four of his later masterpieces. Both silent films, BLACKMAIL and THE LODGER, will feature live musical accompaniment.
Over a career spanning more than half a century, Sir Alfred Hitchcock, nicknamed the Master of Suspense, fashioned a distinctive and recognizable directorial style. His pioneering camera technique mimicking a person's gaze forces viewers to engage in a disturbing form of voyeurism. His framed shots maximize anxiety, fear, and empathy, and his use of innovative film editing is legendary. Hitchcock's stories often feature fugitives falsely accused and on the run from the law with "icy blonde" female beauties as their accomplices and/or nemeses. Renowned for their surprise twist endings, thrilling plots, and witty dialogue, his films often borrow themes from psychoanalysis and present highly artistic depictions of intrigue, murder, and crime.
Often regarded as the greatest British filmmaker, Hitchcock was first choice in a 2007 poll of film critics in Britain's Daily Telegraph, which said: "Unquestionably the greatest filmmaker to emerge from these islands, Hitchcock did more than any director to shape modern cinema, which would be utterly different without him. His flair was for narrative, cruelly withholding crucial information (from his characters and from us) and engaging the emotions of the audience like no one else."
BLACKMAIL and THE LODGER are fully restored, and all films in the series will screen in full HD Transfer with the exception of NOTORIOUS, which will screen on 35mm.
Screenings will be held in the Modern Art Museum auditorium. Tickets are $9, $7 for Modern members, $6 for Modern Reel People and Lone Star members, and free for 2014 ArthouseFW passholders. Tickets may be purchased in advance at lonestarfilmsociety.com or by calling the Modern at 817.738.9215. Tickets will also be available for purchase at the Modern beginning two hours prior to showtime.
Thursday, August 28
6:30 pm Reception for Lone Star and Modern Reel People members
7:30 pm Screening
1929; with Anny Ondra, John Longden, Cyril Ritchard; 75 minutes
Introduction and discussion following screening with Dr. Joan McGettigan
Dr. McGettigan teaches courses in film history and critical film studies at TCU. Her areas of research include the history of crime films, movie adaptations of The Great Gatsby, the Turner Classic Movies channel and its annual Film Festival, and the films of director Alfred Hitchcock, Terrence Malick, and Martin Scorsese. Dr. McGettigan has also conducted research on the history of movies and movie theaters in her hometown of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Her work has been published in the anthology Poetic Visions of America: The Cinema of Terrence Malick and in journals such as Bright Lights Film Journal, Studies in Popular Culture, and Journal of Film and Video.
Hitchcock's silent BLACKMAIL is one of the best British films, if not the best, of the late 1920s. Made in 1929 during the transition to the sound era, it was commissioned as both a silent film and as part-talkie with music and some dialogue scenes. Czech film actress Anny Ondra stars as Alice White, a young woman whose brief flirtation with an artist turns suddenly and terribly sour. Hitchcock's masterly thriller boasts great London locations including the British Museum, Whitehall, and the Lyons Tea House at Piccadilly Circus.
This screening is silent with live musical accompaniment performed by Robert Edwards.
Robert Edwards holds a bachelor's and a master's degree from UNT in Classical Piano Performance and has always had a soft spot for music from the teens and the twenties. He teaches piano and plays with The Singapore Slingers, an eighteen-piece orchestra that specializes in 1920s jazz. He began accompanying silent features about ten years ago and has played for full-length silent features such as THE CABINET OF DR. CALIGARI and NOSFERATU, as well as comedic features and shorts. He also works with autistic children in the Grand Prairie ISD and plays for services at Greenland Hills UMC in Dallas. Robert lives in Oak Cliff, Dallas.
The film is a restoration by the BFI National Archive in association with STUDIOCANAL. Principal restoration funding provided by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association and The Film Foundation. Additional funding provided by Deluxe 142, Pia Getty, Col and Karen Needham, and the Dr. Mortimer and Theresa Sackler Foundation.
Friday, August 29, 7:30 pm
THE 39 STEPS
1935; with Robert Donat, Madeleine Carroll, Dame Peggy Ashcroft; PG; 87 minutes
A man in London tries to help a counterespionage agent, but when the agent is killed and the man stands accused, he must go on the run to save himself and stop a spy ring trying to steal top secret information. "At 35, with more than a dozen features already under his belt, the director triumphed with this dazzling mixture of spycraft, banter, expository nonsense and manic chases along the Scottish Highlands." Joshua Rothkopf, Time Out.
Friday, August 29, 9:30 pm
1960; with Anthony Perkins, Janet Leigh; R; 109 minutes
In 1960, Alfred Hitchcock was already famous as the screen's Master of Suspense (and perhaps the best-known film director in the world) when he released PSYCHO and forever changed the shape and tone of the screen thriller. From its first scene, in which an unmarried couple balances pleasure and guilt in a lunchtime liaison in a cheap hotel (hardly a common moment in a major studio film in 1960), PSYCHO announced that it was taking the audience to places it had never been before. "Alfred Hitchcock's 1960 masterpiece blends a brutal manipulation of audience identification and an incredibly dense, allusive visual style to create the most morally unsettling film ever made." Dave Kehr, Chicago Reader.
Saturday, August 30, 5 pm
1946; with Cary Grant, Ingrid Bergman, Claude Rains; 101 minutes
Three lives become intimately entangled during an espionage operation in this psychologically complex spy thriller. NOTORIOUS was an official selection of the 1946 Cannes Film Festival, was nominated for two Academy Awards, has been selected for preservation in the US National Film Registry by the Library of Congress, and is on TIME Magazine's Best 100 Films of All-Time. "Alfred Hitchcock's NOTORIOUS is the most elegant expression of the master's visual style. It contains some of the most effective camera shots in his-or anyone's-work, and they all lead to the great final passages in which two men find out how very wrong they both were." Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times.
Sunday, August 31, 2 pm
UK 1926; with Ivor Novello, June, Marie Ault, Malcolm Keen; 90 minutes
Introduction by Dr. Rick Worland
Dr. Worland received his PhD in Motion Picture/Television Critical Studies from UCLA. He is a Professor in the Division of Film & Media Arts at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, where his teaching subjects include film history, documentary, popular genres including the Western and the horror film, television history, and the films of Alfred Hitchcock. His work has been published in Cinema Journal, The Journal of Film and Video, and The Journal of Popular Film and Television, among others. His first book, The Horror Film: An Introduction, appeared in 2007 from Wiley-Blackwell Publishing. He is currently working on a new book for Wiley-Blackwell, Ultimate Trips: Hollywood Films in the Vietnam Era, 1960-1979.
Described by Hitchcock himself as "the first true Hitchcock movie," this masterfully silent thriller is set in a fog-bound London terrorized by a Jack the Ripper-style murderer known only as The Avenger. His victims, all young blonde women, are discovered each Tuesday night. This is one of the great British silent era crime films, starring matinée idol Ivor Novello as the mysterious new lodger who appears to be acting rather strangely.
This screening is silent with live musical accompaniment performed by Curtis Heath.
Musician and composer Curtis Heath lives in Fort Worth, Texas. He plays guitar, sings, and writes songs for The Theater Fire, who will release their fourth album in 2014. As a composer for films, he has provided original music for four feature films in the last two years, three of which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival. These include AIN'T THEM BODIES SAINTS starring Casey Affleck and Rooney Mara, HELLION starring Aaron Paul and Juliette Lewis, and PIT STOP, which was also nominated for an Independent Spirit Award in 2014. Heath will perform with local musicians and frequent collaborators T. J. Prendergast and Chad Walls who will provide additional music and sound effects.
T. J. Prendergast is a percussionist from the DFW area who has been performing with regional acts for two decades. After several years of managing a theater, he matriculated to UT Dallas's Sound Design Program, where he began studying the art of foley and sound effects. In collaboration with the Lone Star Film Society, he recently performed a live foley session for William Wellman's 1927 silent classic WINGS. T. J. lives in Oak Cliff with his wife and cat.
Chad Walls is a musician from Dallas. As a multi-instrumentalist and audio/visual engineer, he has been deeply involved with local music for several decades. His live performances with the groups Eyes Wings & Many Other Things and Water Falls incorporate film loops, sound design, and synesthetic visuals. While hearkening back to the 1960s Brotherhood of Light collective, Chad's audio/visual performances are firmly forward looking.
The film is a restoration by the BFI National Archive in association with ITV Studios Global Entertainment, Network Releasing, and Park Circus Films. Principal restoration funding provided by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association and The Film Foundation, and Simon W Hessel.
Additional funding provided by British Board of Film Classification, Deluxe 142, Shivendra Singh Dungarpur, and Ian & Beth Mill.
Sunday, August 31, 4 pm
1954; with James Stewart, Grace Kelly, Thelma Ritter; 112 minutes
A temporarily wheelchair-bound photojournalist is convinced that a murder has been committed in the apartment across the way. Considered by many to be one of Hitchcock's best, REAR WINDOW screened at the 1954 Venice Film festival, received four Academy Award nominations, is ranked #48 on the AFI's Top 100 movie list, and was selected for preservation in the National Film Registry. "It's an astonishing visual and psychological coup. Hitchcock's brilliant satire of cramped city life and his masterly evocation of urban voyeurism suddenly generate primal fear and profound insight. Stewart displays a formidable capacity for prurient interest and self-loathing, and everything Kelly does is 'proper' yet enchantingly sexual; it's her most charged and charming performance ever." Michael Sragow, The New Yorker.
Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth
3200 Darnell Street
Fort Worth, Texas 76107
Museum Gallery Hours
Tue 10 am-7 pm (Sep-Nov, Feb-Apr)
Tue-Sun 10 am-5 pm
Fri 10 am-8 pm
Coffee, snacks, and dessert
10 am-4:30 pm
The Museum is closed Monday and holidays including New Year's Day, Independence Day, Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, and Christmas.