Described by Hitch himself as “the first true Hitchcock movie,” this masterful thriller is set in a fog-bound London terrorized by a Jack-the-Ripper-style murderer known only as The Avenger. With Ivor Novello. (90 mins., DCP)
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, these 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 by critics 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 work 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.