Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Kael's Writing Came Off Without A Hitch

With the press reviews of the new Pauline Kael bio, "A Life in the Dark," I was surprised to read that the doyenne of film critics had no affection for the films of Alfred Hitchcock. Maybe I'd heard something to that effect and forgot about it. It was easy to forgive the mecurial Kael her missteps occasionally. After all, who else could make us anticipate those semi-weekly reviews as we did with her writing in the New Yorker? Hitchcock's crime thrillers, such as "Dial M For Murder" (pictured above) practically redefined the detective movie genre. And what about "Strangers on a Train"? It's hard to dismiss Hitchcock when he turned out stunning films like that. All I can say is, no matter how brilliant your favorite writer may be, read carefully and remain skeptical. It's your best line of defense.

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