Frenzy ★★★★

X-rated Hitchcock!

After the two rather dull and uninspiring cold war thrillers that were Torn Curtain and Topaz, Frenzy marks a welcome return to the murder/thriller genre that Hitchcock made his name in. Now in his seventies and now also into the 1970s, he finally had the freedom to get darker, grittier and be as graphic as possible, as the restrictions and taboos placed on filmmaking were at last relaxed.

I was starting to find his late era output very disappointing and actually worse than Mrs. Oxford's cooking, but anyone who says he ever lost his touch is totally wrong in my view. Frenzy works as a sort of compendium of everything Hitchcock, including elements of suspense, murder mystery, thriller, 'wrong man', creative camerawork and the infamous dark comedy which is at its absolute best here. It's his funniest film to date, the decision to return to his native England was a wise one, the British humour is just top notch.

This really is quite an odd film, it comes across very incongruous for the time, darkly macabre and eccentric. I bet he had a blast making it.

"Mr. Rusk, you're not wearing your tie."

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