Sexual Hitchcock

wedge: Now that we speak of it, what do you think is the most `sexual' (if not erotic--which is a different term altogether) Hitchcock film?

Tippi Hedren's rape in Marnie is shocking yet sensual. There is eroticism in the moment when Bates peers into Marion's hotel room (the remake ruins things by having him masturbate). Notorious' sensual long kiss has been mentioned to death, but I think the kiss in the wine cellar was more dangerous, more abandoned, and sexier because of that. Rebecca has its moments but it's more a Selznick film than Hitchcock, something he's admitted himself. There's wonderfully sexy wit in Rear Window ("preview of coming attraction"), North By Northwest ("Should I murder you?" "Please do...") and To Catch a Thief ("Do you want a leg or a breast?"). Even Hedren being assaulted by birds in The Birds had a perverse undertone to it (her alabaster skin being pecked by hundreds of sharp beaks).

But for sexual urgency I can't think of a more intensely dry-mouthed moment than Scotty waiting for Julie in her hotel room in Vertigo. After that sequence, I practically had to smoke a cigarette...

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