I wouldn’t be the first to comment on the obvious influence of Hitchcock on Brian De Palma’s films, but I’ve noticed that the way De Palma references Hitch in his work is quite controversial. My question is this: do most Hitchcock fanatics consider De Palma a tasteless rip-off artist or a worthy heir to The Master of Suspense? Feel free to provide your own opinion on the matter, but I was also looking for what the general consensus is among the majority of Hitchcock’s most devoted admirers.
Personally, I consider Hitchcock the greatest filmmaker of all time, but I also think De Palma is fantastic and I was certainly never offended by his references. I wonder if Hitch himself ever gave an opinion on De Palma? I imagine he must have been flattered.
I really like De Palma, but I’ve never really been able to get into Hitchcock. I think I need to reevaluate Hitchcock soon, though… so maybe I’ll change my mind after seeing Vertigo.
de palma has a lot of style but he can’t touch hitch imo. he would probably admit this himself. however i know many, like da foo above, who prefer him
DFFOO, if you haven’t seen Vertigo, you haven’t seen Hitchcock.
DePalma was a wonderful director back in the day. If he’s not in the same league as Hitch, neither are 99% of the other directors out there. Like Tarantino, DePalma wore his influences on hsi sleave and brought his own style and intensity to material openly inspired by earlier works.
Haha I have seen it, but I was like 11, so I don’t really remember much about it. I know that I did like it, though…
Hitch and de Palma are two entirely different animals. Yes, the one lifts or re-appropriates the other, but their aims are different. To the point where I’d argue that comparisons between the two are relatively useless, unless you’re trying to contrast Vertigo with Obsession; then you have something to work with.
I haven’t seen Obsession yet, but I definitely think some of De Palma’s films can be associated with specific works of Hitchcock. Dressed To Kill is mostly a Psycho homage, and Body Double is a fusion of Vertigo and Rear Window.
DFFOO, Vertigo is essential- always worth a re-watch. If you aren’t too keen on Hitch’s other stuff, I don’t know how much you’ll love it, but I’ve never been one to discourage someone from watching Vertigo. I recently got a huge print of Saul Bass’ iconic poster, framed and hanging in my basement; I can’t stop looking at it!
Yeah, specific comparisons – movie to movie – can work well at times, but Hitch and de Palma are still operating with completely different aims and perspectives. Obsession, by the way, is de Palma’s Vertigo.
I’ll have to check it out, then. He’s got big shoes to fill ;)
I think Hitchcock’s sense of humor is usually a lot more pronounced than De Palma’s, as is the emotional connection he manages to forge between audience and character…something I’m not even sure De Palma is striving for in his stunningly surface creations.
I don’t think a fan of one of the directors will necessarily be a fan of the other. I know a lot of Hitchcock fans who don’t care for De Palma. I’ve enjoyed films by both directors.
De Palma’s a much colder director, more interested in the shock. I agree with the comments above, that he’s somewhat humorless as well. Wheras Psycho is a black comedy of sorts, I don’t think that you can make that claim for Dressed to Kill.
The Obsession/Vertigo comparison is interesting as well. De Palma hits a lot of the right plot points, but his movie isn’t really very romantic, whereas Vertigo, in its twisted way, is very romantic.
I can take or leave De Palma. Hitchcock is essential viewing.
Body Double may have some Hitchcockian references, but it is a mess of a movie. De Palma was more enraptured with the porno industry than in making a tight well crafted movie, which was the case with Rear Window. Dressed to Kill is tighter but also very indulgent, a far cry from Psycho, if we are comparing movies.
I am a strong Hitchcock fan and a strong De Palma critic. I simply feel that Hitchcock was a solid craftsman and artist, while De Palma relies too much on being shocking and stylish. Also, there’s a certain level of depth to Hitchcock’s films, in regards to technique and characterization, that I don’t see in De Palma’s films.
Mind you, I don’t mind that De Palma borrows from Hitchcock because I think any smart filmmaker should (and often does).
Not really a fan of either.