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Blackmail: BFI Film Classic Blackmail: BFI Film Classic

Hailed as the first British talkie, Hitchcock's Blackmail was also one of the first films to exhibit some of the director's by-now familiar hallmarks.

Hailed as the first British talkie, Hitchcock's Blackmail was also one of the first films to exhibit some of the director's by-now familiar hallmarks.

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Alfred Hitchcock's Blackmail is a landmark in British cinema. Released in June 1929, it was hailed as 'the first British all-talkie film'. Characteristically, Hitchcock makes flamboyant use of the new technical and aesthetic opportunities that sound offered. But the film was also released in a silent version, and to this day some critics consider this version a superior work.

In his lucid and knowledgeable discussion, Tom Ryall covers both versions of the film. It is, he argues, both a considerable work of art in itself, and also one of the first to display those touches we now think of as typically Hitchcockian: a blonde heroine in jeopardy, a surprise killing, some brilliantly manipulated suspense, and a last-reel chase around a familiar public landmark (in this case the British Museum). There's also a cameo appearance by the director himself, as a harassed traveller on the London Underground.

Alfred Hitchcock's Blackmail is a landmark in British cinema. Released in June 1929, it was hailed as 'the first British all-talkie film'. Characteristically, Hitchcock makes flamboyant use of the new technical and aesthetic opportunities that sound offered. But the film was also released in a silent version, and to this day some critics consider this version a superior work.

In his lucid and knowledgeable discussion, Tom Ryall covers both versions of the film. It is, he argues, both a considerable work of art in itself, and also one of the first to display those touches we now think of as typically Hitchcockian: a blonde heroine in jeopardy, a surprise killing, some brilliantly manipulated suspense, and a last-reel chase around a familiar public landmark (in this case the British Museum). There's also a cameo appearance by the director himself, as a harassed traveller on the London Underground.

Additional Info

Additional Info

SKU 9780851703565
Author(s) Tom Ryall
Publisher(s) Palgrave Macmillan , BFI Publishing
Format Paperback
Original publication date 01/11/1993
Number of pages 96

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