I thought it would be fun to start with North by Northwest for Summer of Hitchcock because it's just such a fun and popular film, not too scary. It's actually been several years since I'd watched it, so I enjoyed watching it again.
North by Northwest is the story of Roger Thornhill a successful advertising executive who gets caught up by mistake into a case of mistaken identity and finds himself fighting for his life and the life of a beautiful woman he meets on the train.
What I like about North by Northwest is that it is action packed, full of intrigue, and downright humorous. I laughed out loud several times while watching due to the quick wit of the characters, particularly Roger Thornhill. Yet I was also never bored, because the plot moves at a brisk pace we are often wondering what will happen next, and like Roger, we don't always know what actually is happening.
Roger Thornhill himself is an interesting character. He works in advertising which naturally means we'd think him to be focused on helping others get what they think they need. His initials spell out ROT, and his relationships all seem quite superficial. In fact, in the very beginning when his secretary accuses him of lying, he says, "In the world of advertising there is no such thing as a lie, Maggie. There is only the expedient exaggeration." And perhaps that is what the whole film is based upon, the "non-lies" of others he soon finds himself caught in.
I found the entire abduction scene to be so amusing, almost as nauseating as I found the later seduction scene on the train.
My favorite sequence was probably the scene where Roger is running from the plane. I mean how crazy was that?
I did a bit of reading of critial analysis of the film which says that North by Northwest is a the story of a man's struggle for identity. I can certainly see how this would be so, but does he find himself? Or does he just marry another pretty girl he knew for 24 hours???
Alfred Hitchcock famously made cameos in his films...spotted him in the very beginning of this one!
Overall, I really enjoyed this one, and can't wait to watch Dial M for Murder this week!