1940 – Rebecca

★★★★★ USA. 2h10m. Romance / Thriller. Directed by Alfred Hitchcock. Written by Robert E. Sherwood, Joan Harrison (screenplay) and Philip MacDonald, Michael Hogan (story) and Daphne du Maurier (“Rebecca”). Cinematography by George Barnes. Edited by W. Donn Hayes. Music by Franz Waxman. Starring Joan Fontaine, Laurence Olivier, Judith Anderson, George Sanders, Reginald Denny, Gladys Cooper, C. Aubrey Smith, Nigel Bruce.

A gothic tale shot in black-and-white. Maxim de Winter’s first wife Rebecca, who died before the events of the film, is never seen. Her reputation and recollections of her, however, are a constant presence in the lives of Maxim, his new wife and the housekeeper Mrs. Danvers.

Rebecca was theatrically released on April 12, 1940. A critical and commercial success, it received eleven nominations at the 13th Academy Awards, more than any other film that year. It won two awards; Best Picture, and Best Cinematography, becoming the only film directed by Hitchcock to win the former award.

1941 – Suspicion

★★★★☆ USA. 1h39m. Thriller. Directed by Alfred Hitchcock. Written by Samson Raphaelson, Joan Harrison, Alma Reville (screenplay) and Francis Iles (“Before The Fact”). Cinematography by Harry Stradling Sr. Edited by William Hamilton. Music by Franz Waxman. Starring Joan Fontaine, Cary Grant, Nigel Bruce, Sir Cedric Hardwicke, Dame May Whitty, Isabel Jeans, Heather Angel.

In the film, a shy spinster runs off with a charming playboy, who turns out to be penniless, a gambler, and dishonest in the extreme. She comes to suspect that he is also a murderer, and that he is attempting to kill her.