Frenzy (1972): Hitchcock’s Last Commercial Film

“Frenzy” marked Hitchcock’s return to England after a two-decade absence, during which he made numerous masterpieces in Hollywood.  His last film to be shot in London was “Stage Fright,” in 1950.

“Frenzy” is Hitchcock’s most commercially successful film since “Psycho,” in 1960.

“Frenzy” turned out to be Hitchcock’s next-to-last feature.  His very last work was “Family Plot,” four years later, in 1976; he died in 1980.

“Frenzy” has no major male or female stars—it’s more of an ensemble piece, with some of the U.K. most estimable stage actors, such as Alec McCowen, Anna Massey, and Billie Whitelaw

“Frenzy” contains a larger number of food scenes, and eating features more prominently in the plot, literally and metaphorically, than in any other Hitchcock film.

All the victims in “Frenzy” are women, beginning with the body floating in the river in the first scene, and ending with the murder of the main actress in the plot, played by Anne Massey.

“Frenzy” combines dark, morbid humor with thrilling horror.  Critics were divided at the time about the scene, set in a truck carrying potatoes, searching for the incriminating tie pin in his victim’s hand.

“Frenzy” is a cold, cynical film, in which all the relationships are defined by deceit, disloyalty, and betrayal.

“Frenzy” is one of Hitchcock’s most detached pictures, in which the protagonist is far from being heroic, despite being innocent of the rapes and murders he’s accused of. Angry, poor, unemployed, and alone, he is driven by bitterness about his life and relentless need for revenge at all costs.

“Frenzy” revolves around one of the most frequent themes in Hitchcock’s work: The innocent man accused of murders he did not commit.

“Frenzy” contains the longest, most gruesome violent scene, the rape and murder of Barbara Blaney, in Hitchcock’s work.

During the politician’s self-congratulatory speech, one member of the crows withholds his applause, Hitchcock himself. Dressed in a dark suit, he knows more than the phony politicos about the persistence of pollution in the river.

Share this:
Share this page via Email Share this page via Stumble Upon Share this page via Digg this Share this page via Facebook Share this page via Twitter