The Cinematic Tools Alfred Hitchcock Used to Toy with Your Emotions


“In feature films the director is God.” — Alfred Hitchcock


A director may be an omnipotent force when they direct films, but it’s a different story entirely when that director sits down and becomes a spectator. Their ability to manipulate an audience using the power of cinema is something Hitchcock commented on quite a bit during his career, and his methods are explored in this video essay written and narrated by Julian Palmer for The Discarded Image.


Hitchcock was known as a master cinematic manipulator, partially because he pulled it off time and time again in his films, and partially because he was one of the first filmmakers to really acknowledge the power of an image, a piece of music, and an edited sequence to influence a viewer’s emotional and psychological response.


In his famous interview with fellow director François Truffaut he stated:




“I don’t care about the subject matter; I don’t care about the acting; but I do care about the pieces of film and the photography and the soundtrack and all of the technical ingredients that made the audience scream.”


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