1 Hitchcock: Male Heroes–Attributes

July 13, 2022

Hero and Motif:

The hero typically lives in a small, enclose world of his own, a fabrication, a protection, a prison

It’s an artificial, unrealistic world into which real chaos erupts, demanding to be faced, forcing to hero to get out of himself and in the process he’s shaken up, (Robin Wood, p. 100)

Jeff in Rear Window

Melanie, The Birds

Donda descent inti hell, Wrong Man

Cary Grant, Nort, he is deprived of the security of his office and cocktail bar

Male characters pop up from off screen space in a sudden fashion (Richard Allen, note 14)

Johnny, Suspicion

Uncle Charlie, Shadow

Rusk, Frenzy


Female villains

Rebecca, housekeeper out of nowhere

Freudian Overtones:

Suspicion: Lina treats men as either children or horses. She associates Johnny with a horse; Johnny also bets on horses

Marnie: also horses

sexual repression and withdrawal

Heroes as Practical Jokers and Aristocratic Rogues

R. Donat, 39 Steps

C. Grant, Suspicion

C. Grant, To Catch a Thief

The Birds: Melanie introduced as practical joker


H’s American heroes change from the 1951 Strangers on train

A callous, lonely and violent narcissist

narcissism is produced by obsessive desire for mastery, or obsessive fear of statis (boredom)

Lack of Self Knowledge

Rear Window: Jeffries, a man who has never come to terms with himself, his lack of self-knowledge, self-awareness and consequent tendency to lapse into compulsive behavior make him an archtypical H protagonist.

Lisa describes him early on as “a tourist on an endless vacation.”