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10 Hitchcock Movies Everyone Can Enjoy

Whether you love movies or not, you have most likely heard of Alfred Hitchcock. Hitchcock was a brilliant director known for his thrilling stories and masterful use of the camera. You've probably seen Psycho, one of his most famous films, or you've heard the famous 'shower scene' referenced many times. Hitchcock's films have become classics, and rightfully so, they are still captivating to modern audiences and keep you on the edge of your seat. Be sure to check one of these out – you won’t regret it!

Vertigo

Vertigo is probably my favorite Hitchcock movie and one of the best movies of all time. The movie stars James Stewart as an ex-police officer who has incredible vertigo from his fear of heights. He's employed by an old friend to keep tabs on his wife... but there may be more going on than meets the eye. If you watch only one Hitchcock movie, you have to see this one – the twists and turns of this movie will keep you in suspense the whole time. The movie's even responsible for creating a camera technique, the Vertigo Effect, which is used in many movies and shows today. It's the type of movie that will have you thinking about it for days afterward. 

Dial M for Murder

Dial M for Murder is about a man who has a meticulous plan to kill his wealthy wife (Grace Kelly) in order to inherit all her money, but when the murder goes wrong and his wife is alive, he has to throw the police off his scent and make sure no one finds out his plan. Dial M for Murder is a classic mystery story with the twist of the audience knowing who planned the murder but waiting to see if/how the characters find out. If you love mysteries you should definitely add this movie to your watchlist!

The Birds

The Birds is about a woman (Tippi Hedren) who drives to Bodega Bay to give someone two birds they purchased as a gift. However, the birds that live in the town start behaving strangely, first attacking our heroine, then a school, resulting in a massive bird assault on the whole town. The Birds is an incredibly thrilling film – watching the birds start off seemingly innocent and rise as a malicious group of terrors on the town. This suspenseful story of an apocalyptic attack is entertaining for everyone and is definitely one of my favorites by Hitchcock. 

North by Northwest

North by Northwest is about a man (Cary Grant) who gets mistaken for a spy by an enemy agency and is forced to go on the run from them. North by Northwest is a departure from Hitchcock's typical thriller films and is more rooted in action – it feels very much like a Mission Impossible movie with the hero dodging attacks and climbing things at great heights. If you enjoy action and Tom Cruise movies you'll be sure to enjoy Cary Grant's stint as a hero who's not quite a spy.

Rear Window

Rear Window, starring James Stewart and Grace Kelly, is about a photographer with a broken leg who spends all his time watching the lives of his neighbors outside his apartment window. When he becomes convinced that he has seen a murder, he and his friends have to try and find evidence to prove that their neighbor is guilty. Rear Window is a classic, with the mystery of the murder keeping you in suspense, but you also get glimpses of different neighbors' lives and become interested in their stories too. It will make you wonder what your neighbors are up to (not murder, I hope) and is a movie you should definitely check out. 

Marnie

Marnie is about a woman (Tippi Hedren) who takes on different identities to steal from companies that she works from. When Mark (Sean Connery) finds out about Marnie and what she does, he tries to help her and marries her. Then, he finds out about all her psychological issues and tries to find their cause to help her face her trauma. Marnie is very interesting and you want to find out more about her – Why is she scared of thunderstorms? Why is she triggered by the color red? It's an interesting psychological thriller by Hitchcock and is worthy of his canon. 

To Catch a Thief

To Catch a Thief is about retired cat burglar John Robie (Cary Grant) who has come under suspicion after recent crimes that mimic his style. To clear his name and find the real cat burglar, he finds people who have expensive jewelry and meets Francie (Grace Kelly), who falls in love with him. This a mystery and romance that doesn’t feel like a typical Hitchcock film, but is enjoyable nonetheless. 

Rope

Two men feel they have committed the perfect murder and invite their friends to a dinner party with the dead man hidden in the same room. Will they be discovered?  Rope is a great, short mystery that has you simultaneously rooting for the body to stay hidden and for the men to get caught. It also has the feel of a classic play, as the whole story takes place in the same room.

Strangers on a Train

Guy Haines meets a psychopathic person on a train who wants to trade murders. The man jokingly describes killing Guy’s wife so that Guy can be with his girlfriend and, as a trade, Guy will kill the man’s father. Guy thinks nothing of the interaction, but later finds his wife killed and the psychopathic man demanding that he fulfill his side of the 'deal'. The movie is a thrilling tale, hoping the man gets caught for his crime, and Guy won't be blamed or forced to do something he would regret. This is a thrilling noir film that you’ll definitely enjoy. 

The Man Who Knew Too Much

Dr. Mckenna and his wife are on a family trip to Morrocco when they meet a mysterious stranger. Later, the stranger is killed in a marketplace and reveals an assassination plot to the doctor. Their child is then kidnapped by the assassins who threaten the couple not to reveal the plot. The rest of the film involves the couple trying to get back their son. James Stewart and Doris Day are excellent in this film and you’ll find it very interesting!

I hope you find something on this list that catches your eye and you enjoy watching Hitchcock’s films!

Ashmita Shanthakumar is a student at the University of Utah pursuing a BA in English and Political Science. She is the Politics & Entertainment News Correspondent for HC Utah for 2020-21. When she's not writing you can find her watching old movies, petting friendly cats, and talking about superheroes.
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