Hitchcock and Disney: Sadists?

by Jeff Abbott on September 8, 2008

The London Times has an interesting article by Jonathan Coe where he talks about the particular genius/sadism of Alfred Hitchcock and Walt Disney in illustrating the world we live in is a place of pain.
(Spoilers follow if you have not seen Bambi, Marnie, or The Birds).
Well, of course the world is a place of pain. It’s also a place of joy. But showing two hours of joyfulness bores an audience to tears. They want to see pain but they want to see people *triumph* over the pain. The point is not that Bambi’s mother dies; the point is that he survives, stronger and wiser. The point is not that the birds savage Tippi Hedren; the point is that she, and Rod Steiger, survive (although albeit in a dramatically changed world.) But Coe’s point about Hitchcock’s insistence on the rape scene in Marnie is chilling, and shows that even geniuses can make a questionable choice.
Via Sarah Weinman.

    Leave a Comment

    Previous post:

    Next post: