At the beginning of the film the MGM logo comes up. It consists of mainly a lion’s head which moves side to side making a diegetic roaring sound. There is a bright green background. Once the lion has finished, some non-diegetic music comes on. It is quite high pitched and it builds up the tension. It basically shows that the MGM Company was powerful and strong and it has had the confidence throughout the years of the company being around. Also the music used sets the scene.
Then the opening credits begin to appear. Lines begin to form on the bright green background, horizontally and vertically at an angle. It brings attraction to the viewer. While this is happening, names of the actors flash up big and bold on the screen getting everyone’s attention. Some are bigger than others because there were more important or have a main role in the film. Alfred Hitchcock’s name also appears, bigger and bolder than anyone else’s showing his importance.
The lines look like a spider web, the graphics affects the viewer’s thoughts of what happens. It builds up a lot of tension because everyone is wondering what is going to happen next. The lines then begin to fade after a while and it turns into a big window from an office, from the reflection of the window you can begin to see the city life.
As the camera fades into the window if effects the viewer in the sense that there are different things happening. At first, when you start to see the reflection through the window, not everyone would realise what is happening but it becomes cleared when it narrows do to the actual city life. The more you watch the film, the easier it is to discover what is happening.
The camera now moves onto the city life and you can see hundreds of people rushing around as if they were in a rush to get somewhere after a hard day at work so it was probably rush hour. There are a lot of mid angle shots at this part of the scene to give the audience the sense of being there. Alfred Hitchcock’s name now appears, like wise really big and bold to let everyone know that he was the director.
Later in the scene when the bus comes, in rush hour, a man tires to get on the bus. The bus is full of people and doesn’t stop for him. He bangs on the bus door but it doesn’t make any difference. The man that wasn’t able to get onto the bus was Alfred Hitchcock; he always appears in his films but he makes himself have a very small part. People who watch his films know that he will appear somewhere in the film at some point so they will keep focussed on the film to see him. By appearing early on, Hitchcock ensures the audience can focus on the plot.
Then as the music begins to get very loud the audience get engaged into the beginning of the film after the credits. Then when the music begins to fade, the audience begin to relax because they know that the film is going to begin.
The main body of the scene begins inside the building. The audience again see a lot of people in a lift, rushing to get out of the offices to get home. Then they see an important man, Roger Thornhill, dictating to his secretary. The audience get very occupied by all the entertainment. He begins to shout at his secretary telling her to write everything down, this makes him seem powerful and in control.
Then he has a conversation with the security guard. It was very short in mind because the security guard wouldn’t talk to him. So Roger said to him, say hello to the wife and the security guard then replied with ‘Not Speaking’. The audience think he is a nice man because he tries to make out he is, even though he isn’t; if he really interested in talking to the security guard then he would have stopped and listened to his problems.
Throughout Roger is the centre shot on the scene and he is being polite. Everyone wants to talk to him as well, He is an important man and he seems to act that way to everyone as if he is too good for everyone else and he seems to get all the attention off most people. This shows that he is the main character throughout the film and his is strong and confident it the right setting.
Roger Thornhill then cheats the taxi driver by saying that he has ‘A very ill women’ and he needed to get her to the hospital just because he wanted to get somewhere. The lady, his secretary, wasn’t impressed with what he did because he had lied to a man. This shows he isn’t a loyal gentleman and he will lie to get what he wants.
His secretary acts shocked towards him and a bit guilty because he was wrong to lie and making people then believe him. This contrasts with Thornhill’s total lack of conscience, even though its lies that eventually cause all his problems.
My opinion of the first scene, North by North west gets your attention as you want to know why he keeps sending flowers to his mum. Also I think that Alfred Hitchcock made the introduction to the film very built up with a lot of tension as it makes the viewer want to continue watching the film and prepares the audience to the thriller genre.