Monday, September 13, 2010

Claude Chabrol (1930-1910): Filmmaker, Hitchcock Pioneer

A little more than eight months ago Eric Rohmer, the French director and film critic passed away. Yesterday marked the passing of Rohmer's co-author of the first book-length study of the films of Alfred Hitchcock—Claude Chabrol.

In my previous post on Eric Rohmer, I noted the significance of their book Hitchcock: The First Forty-four Films, a critical survey of Hitchcock’s films chronologically from The Pleasure Garden through The Wrong Man.

Considered the father of the French New Wave, Chabrol's output as a director paid homage to Hitchcock perhaps more than any of his Cahiers du Cinéma contemporaries who helped initiate and elevate the critical discussion of Hitchcock's work. Chabrol's films leaned toward the thriller genre—Le Boucher, The Unfaithful Wife, The Cry of the Owl—and reveal both a fascination with murder and sense of irony that can be characterized as Hitchcockian.

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