Monday, February 6, 2012

Alfred Hitchcock's bomb

Illustration Friday: suspense

Hitchcock was quoted describing suspense vs. surprise:
"We are now having a very innocent little chat. Let's suppose that there is a bomb underneath this table between us. Nothing happens, and then all of a sudden, "Boom!" There is an explosion. The public is surprised, but prior to this surprise, it has seen an absolutely ordinary scene, of no special consequence. Now, let us take a suspense situation. The bomb is underneath the table and the public knows it, probably because they have seen the anarchist place it there. The public is aware the bomb is going to explode at one o'clock and there is a clock in the decor. The public can see that it is a quarter to one. In these conditions, the same innocuous conversation becomes fascinating because the public is participating in the scene. The audience is longing to warn the characters on the screen: "You shouldn't be talking about such trivial matters. There is a bomb beneath you and it is about to explode!"

Oooo, just found this set of audio interviews. Here is their brief description:
"In the fall of 1962, François Truffaut carried out extensive interviews with Alfred Hitchcock at his offices at Universal Studios...." Pin It Now!

1 comment:

  1. Great illustration. I've always been a bit to scared to watch much of Hitchcock's stuff, he certainly knows how to mess with people's nervous system!