Downhill

Film/Video
Downhill

Downhill

Image courtesy of British Film Institute

Downhill

(Alfred Hitchcock, 1927)

The Hitchcock 9

Alfred Hitchcock is one of the most famous film directors of all time, but his first ten silent films—nine of which survive—are little known compared to his later features. Made from 1925 to 1929, the films are among the greatest achievements of British silent cinema. They can also be seen as blueprints for the rest of Hitch’s body of work, containing many of the motifs and obsessions we have come to recognize as Hitchcockian.

Hitchcock’s development as a filmmaker in the era of silent cinema is crucial to an understanding of his filmmaking style. He was hailed as a genius very early on, and audiences and critics alike were captivated by his daring and powerful mixture of European editing styles, dramatic composition, and humor-laced high drama. Anyone who has been thrilled by Hitchcock’s Hollywood classics such as Vertigo, The Birds, or Psycho will recognize elements of the director’s touch in these earliest works.

The British Film Institute’s restoration of The Hitchcock 9 is the largest restoration project the BFI has ever undertaken and is only possible with the help of new digital technology. Thanks to the BFI’s efforts these films are being made available to venues around the world, including the Wexner Center. We’re complementing the screenings of most films with live musical accompaniment and also hosting a related film studies lecture.

The Hitchcock 9 is a joint venture of the BFI, Rialto Pictures/STUDIOCANAL, and Park Circus/ITV.

Tue, Oct 15, 2013 7 PM

One of Hitchcock’s darkest early films, Downhill chronicles the fall from grace of a schoolboy who is expelled for getting a girl pregnant and subsequently disowned by his father. (105 mins., DCP)

A Park Circus Films Release. Restoration by the BFI National Archive in association with ITV Studios Global Entertainment and Park Circus Films. Principal restoration funding provided by Simon W. Hessel. Additional funding provided by Deluxe 142 and The Headley Trust.

Jean Dubuffet, Vaches au pre (Cows in a meadow), 1954

Transfigurations: Modern Masters from the Wexner Family Collection closes Dec 31. Don't miss the exhibition artnet named among the world's 25 "must-see shows."

Artists featured in Transfigurations: Modern Masters from the Wexner Family Collection

Learn more about the artists represented in Transfigurations at our dedicated website. (Educators will also find curriculum resources to support their K–12 classrooms.)