2018-04-24 11:05:06[UPDATES]

4K Restoration: Hitchcock VS Clouzot, European Thriller Movies Arena


The 4K Restoration program is one of the signature screening events of Shanghai International Film Festival (SIFF). Upon the meticulous restoration by technicians, the legacy of the cinema history breaks through the dust of time and achieves rejuvenation, allowing the viewers after decades to traverse the time and encounters the intact and original images.



The 21st Shanghai International Film Festival is to be held this June, when the 4K Restoration program will greet our guests and audience with 4 classical thrillers, all of which come from two world-renowned masters of suspense and horror – Alfred HITCHCOCK and Henri-Georges CLOUZOT.

In China, Hitchcock is a household name. Born in London at the end of the 19th century, the great director started directing silent films from the 1920s, with subsequent creations successfully triggering the popularity of modern thrillers. After he went to Hollywood in the 40s, his directing career reached another peak. He specialized in the genre of suspense, directly leading the film creation of later generations; but with a strong personal identity, he was also known as a pioneer of Auteur.




As 2018 coincides with the 60th anniversary of the classic VERTIGO’s public release, SIFF will present the 4K restored versions of Hitchcock's REBECCA and VERTIGO this year.

REBECCA is the first Hollywood project of Hitchcock. Based on the novel by the British female writer Daphne du MAURIER, starring Lawrence OLIVER and Joan FONTAINE, the film was once translated and released in China, which has left a deep impression to the Chinese fans of that time. As a representative work of his creation career, as well as the perfect embodiment of his film achievements, VERTIGO always ranks high in various movie charts around the world. The latest 4K version will also be played at the Cannes Classics 2018 this May.




Though the French director Henri-Georges CLOUZOT may not be as famous as Hitchcock, he was regarded as the latter’s biggest opponent, and even known as the “French Hitchcock”. The two had a lot in common, such as the creation period, the fascination with blond hair, and the use of exquisite and accurate audio-visual techniques to induce viewers to follow the characters and approach the fear in the dark.

However, since Clouzot didn’t live a life as smooth as Hitchcock did, he failed to produce as much excellent works as the latter did. Compared with Hitchcock’s calmness and indifference, his works were more emotional. The 4K Restoration this year is showing his highest acclaimed masterpieces THE WAGES OF FEAR and LES DIABOLIQUES.




Honored with the Golden Bear at the Berlin Film Festival and the Palme d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival, THE WAGES OF FEAR stars Yves MONTAND, the renowned French singer and actor.

This movie is one of the favorite of the filmmaker Christopher NOLAN, who claimed that while shooting DUNKIRK, he watched THE WAGES OF FEAR over and over again to draw inspiration from its approach of creating suspense. 

LES DIABOLIQUES, featuring the French cinema actress Simone SIGNORET, is also a masterpiece you cannot miss. Based on the novel by Pierre BOILEAU and Thomas NARCEJAC, the film has offered an eternal bathroom thriller scene with refined audiovisual skills..




The four works together not only interact with each other in the history of genre movies, but are also inspiring later generations in a profound manner.

Just as the creation of horror by carefully dismantling a driving scene in THE WAGES OF FEAR, DUNKIRK portrays a heroic retreat at different speeds and with different means of transportation in the sea, on the land and up in the sky; paying tribute to REBECCA, another Hollywood director Paul Thomas ANDERSON manages to relive the spirit and classic Hollywood and the charm of Gothic dramas in his work PHANTOM THREAD.

Today, as we are still tirelessly discussing about which is more important among style, story, standpoint and emotion, the precious legacy of Clouzot and Hitchcock may give us some hints about what directors are and what films are.




Release year: 1940

Directed by: Alfred HITCHCOCK

Starring: Laurence OLIVIER/ Joan FONTAINE/ George SANDERS/ Judith ANDERSON/ Nigel BRUCE


A young woman meets de Winter, the owner of the country house Manderley on a cliff by the sea. Then the two fall in love and get married. The young woman thus moves to Manderley and becomes the hostess here. Gradually, she discovers that the presence of Derwent's ex-wife Rebecca is pervasive in the house. The housekeeper Mrs. Danvers is also obsessed with Rebecca and hates the new hostess.

However, her husband is unwilling to make explanation, as if he has something hidden in his mind. Rebecca is like a nightmare wandering all over the house, and things are getting more and more complicated...

The film won the Best Picture and Best Cinematography at the 13th Academy Awards.




Release year: 1958

Directed by: Alfred HITCHCOCK

Starring: James STEWART/ Kim NOVAK/ Barbara Bel GEDDES/ Tom HELMORE


A detective Scottie falls from rooftop in a chase and suffer from acrophobia. He has to retire to bacome as a private detective. An acquaintance from college, Gavin, asks Scottie to follow his wife, Madeleine, who is suspected of having psychophobia.

Gavin believes his wife is cursed by her deceased great grandmother. Scottie thinks Gavin is very naive, but still takes this task. He sees Madeleine staring at her great grandmother's portrait for hours and going to the cemetery. He also saves her from trying to jump into the river to commit suicide. Is Madeleine really cursed? What kind of conspiracy is hiding behind?




Release year: 1953

Directed by: Henri-Georges CLOUZOT

Starring: Yves MONTAND/ Charles VANEL/ Peter Van EYCK/ Folco LULLI/ Véra CLOUZOT


An oil well 500 kilometers from the town ignites a raging fire. In order to extinguish the fire, the unscrupulous oil company owner is hiring tramps in the town to drive two trucks carrying nitroglycerine to the fire scene. In the end, the playboy Mario, the ill Luigi, the unemployed pub owner Bimba, and the desperate businessman Jo set foot on the journey for the reward...

The movie is the winner of the Golden Bear at the 3rd Berlin Film Festival and the Palme d'Or at the 6th Cannes Film Festival.




Release year: 1955

Directed by: Henri-Georges CLOUZOT

Starring: Simone SIGNORET/ Véra CLOUZOT/ Paul MEURISSE


In a boarding school, the female teacher Christina and her husband, the principal Delassalle have a disharmonious relation. Delassalle is very macho, and rude to his wife. After long consideration, Christina decides to get rid of her husband. Under the persuasion of another teacher and her girlfriend, Nicole, they are determined to execute a murder plan...




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