Was Alfred Hitchcock a cynical trifler with his audience's emotions, as he liked to pretend? Or was he a profoundly humane artist? Most commentators leave Hitchcock's self-assessment unquestioned, but this book shows that his movies convey an affectionate, hopeful understanding of human nature and the redemptive possibilities of love. Lesley Brill discusses Hitchcock's work as a whole and examines in detail twenty-two films, from perennial favorites like North by Northwest to neglected masterpieces like Rich and Strange.
"Deserves a place alongside the most provocative and incisive Hitchcock criticism of the decade."--Choice
"Brill argues his case ingeniously and goes a long way to explaining why Hitchcock was such a tease: he loved to scare us before leading us by the hand back to a world where dragons do not exist--except in the dark of the cinema...."--David Coward, The [London] Times Literary Supplement
"Brill argues his case persuasively in a knowledgeable analysis of Hitchcock's work."--George L. George, American Cinematographer