Dial M for Murder 3D – TIFF

Dial M for Murder 3D

Wondering who would ever come to watch a Hitchcock classic re-released after 1954, I mean considering movies like Looper and Argo premiering on the same day. We (Myself & Karthik) walked confidently towards the screening; surprisingly we were ushered away saying that the theater was house-full for Dial M for Murder. I didn’t understand the logic, apparently there were more people wanting to watch the Hitchcock Classic among the glitz and glamour of the other films. We just felt unlucky; however we laughed off and walked away.

One month later, finally got to catch up with the movie. I really wanted to experience the movie in 3d not because I’m a fan of 3d ( In fact I hate 3d) , I just wanted to experience a Hitchcock film in 3d. Well I finally got a chance (believe me, it was not easy to get tickets even now)

We all know Dial M for Murder a classic, a film which is so memorable. Dial M for murder is arguably one of Hitchcock’s best films. It Holds You Spellbound with Suspense!  Did Hitchcock make it in 3d? Yes. Reluctantly Hitchcock made Dial M for Murder in 3d. Hitchcock disliked the idea of 3d but the studio convinced him to make it in 3d, and understandably 3d did not catch up well with theaters .Ended with people watching it in 2d.

How did Hitchcock handle 3d?

First of all unlike most contemporary directors, Hitchcock did not get carried away by the technology. He did not create a scene because it would look good in 3d. It wouldn’t be unfair to say that he made the best use of 3d. A 3d movie was and is considered by many as visual spectacles, What Hitchcock tried to do is fascinating! Hitchcock succeeded in using 3d to add more depth in to the scene. Each and every frame of the movie had depth, that is, in a scene you could literally measure the placement of objects in the foreground, subject and the background. After watching it in 3d I could geometrically say where Grace Kelly picked up the phone in the room, the exact location (3d).  The depth 3d brings to a plot like Dial M for Murder is immense. I don’t think anyone would dare to make a drama in 3d; well unfortunately it works well that way (At least for me). Yes, it was pain-full for me to sit through Avatar, Tin-Tin .etc. Not that I didn’t like them If I’m being honest these movies were too much of a strain to my eye, I often left the theater with a headache (I’m not making that up). To my disbelief, I relished every moment of Dial M for Murder in and I almost forgot I was wearing a 3d glass. In my opinion Hitchcock reluctantly made the best use of 3d for storytelling. It has never been done before by any film maker. It’s a subtle use of a not-so-subtle technology from the master of suspense.

So, there are no “eye-popping” sequences?

Well there are. One of the crucial scenes in the movie. Some of the scenes have some eye popping sequences, which clearly show us that Hitchcock was clear about what he wanted. The words that I came up to my mind after watching the movie were, Classic, Perfect, flawless, absolute, subtle. That pretty much sums it all.

Dial M for Murder 3d – Stitched to Perfection!

Experience a must!


Dial M for Murder

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Country: USA
Year: 1954
Language: English
Runtime: 105 minutes
Rating: PG
 Cast: Grace Kelly, Robert Cummings

My first symphony

I had the chance of attending the TSO (Toronto Symphony Orchestra) Late night concert featuring Shostakovich:  Symphony No. 11, “The Year 1905”. I  always wanted to experience a live symphony orchestra and have  always found it fascinating. When I expressed my desire to my friends I often find a (what’s so great about it) look. So when it came to talking about this kind of music I did not have many people to share.

However, I have always been tracking the events conducted at by the TSO. With Luminato 6, there were a lot of events conducted at special prices and some great events for free! . And the late night performance featuring Shostakovich: Symphony No. 11, “The Year 1905” was a part of it.

The performance took place at Roy Thompson Hall. When I booked my tickets there were two options to choose from,’select your seats’ or ‘Choose best available seat’ I usually won’t do that , but I chose ‘Choose best available seat’. And guess what I really got the best seat in the main floor right in the center of the hall close enough to the stage.

After a brief wait, the performance started right away without any talk. The initial movement was frankly quite below my expectations, then the second and the third movement was melancholic and gradually building up to the finale.  The Finale was something that I never expected it reached unimaginable highs. The victorious sounds thundered the hall and then it all faded slowly to the end. The music was able to kindle a variety of imagery. The music maintained a note-to-note tension that never dipped, preventing any sense of being draggy. Subtitled “The Year 1905,” the symphony depicts the massacre of protesters by the czarist forces, an event that contributed to the revolution that later swept Russia. This piece was so powerful and bombastic that it portrayed the horror that happened and  that which is was about to happen. However to be frank I was quite skeptical about the start, but cannot help stop expressing my appreciation for the finale.

So I came across this quote once. And now it all made sense.

 “Each human life is like a new symphony heard for the first time. It can’t be understood or fully appreciated until after the final cadence.”

Another interesting thing I saw was one person from the stage would sit there all along and would seldom walk up  to clash the cymbals. The clash of cymbals  reminded me of Alfred Hitchcock’s The Man Who Knew Too Much. The clash of the cymbals was so loud then realized how it was used in the plot of the movie.  Only Hitchcock has a talent to make a beautiful orchestra feel haunted. According to me, it one of the best examples of the power of cinema. Below is the video of the climax sequence featuring the London Philharmonic Society at Albert Hall featuring in The Man who knew too much. The sequences are breathtaking!

(Notes: Info on Shostakovich:Symphony No. 11, “The Year 1905”; Below is the YouTube video link of live performance of the same piece of music to get a feel of it.)