Hitchcock’s View on the Family Dynamic

Hitchcock’s Shadow of Doubt shows Hitchcock’s true feelings about families as a whole when he introduces the Newton family and their inner turmoil. “Like everything else in Hitchcock, the family is not innocent:…” (McLaughlin). In this particular family the relationship between Uncle Charlie and Charlie comes off as something more than just an uncle, niece relationship. Throughout the film Hitchcock adds actions and word choice that make it even more apparent that this is something more, for example the gift of the ring. “This unhealthy, unholy union – it is as if they are getting married – of her and her uncle..” (McLaughlin). This gift of a ring in itself makes the audience uncomfortable but the fact that it is the ring of Uncle Charlie’s victim adds a new level to this disturbed family dynamic. Hitchcock uses Uncle Charlie to demonstrate his view on the corrupt American families.

McLaughlin, James. ” All in the Family: Alfred Hitchcock’s Shadow of a Doubt.” In A Hitchcock Reader, 145-155. 2nd ed. Wiley-Blackwell, 2009.

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