6.3/10
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53 user 49 critic

The Girl (2012)

The turbulent relationship between filmmaker Alfred Hitchcock and actress Tippi Hedren.

Director:

Julian Jarrold

Writers:

Gwyneth Hughes, Donald Spoto (book)
Reviews

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Nominated for 3 Golden Globes. Another 3 wins & 33 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Sienna Miller ... Tippi Hedren
Toby Jones ... Alfred Hitchcock
Imelda Staunton ... Alma Reville Hitchcock
Conrad Kemp Conrad Kemp ... Evan Hunter
Penelope Wilton ... Peggy Robertson
Angelina Ingpen Angelina Ingpen ... Melanie
Candice D'Arcy Candice D'Arcy ... Josephine Milton
Carl Beukes ... Jim Brown
Kate Tilley ... Rita Riggs
Aubrey Shelton Aubrey Shelton ... Maitre D
Leon Clingman ... Ray Berwick
Patrick Lyster ... Bob Boyle
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Storyline

When Grace Kelly retires from films to marry Prince Rainier Alfred Hitchcock looks for a similar blonde and finds her in TV model,the little known Tippi Hedren,who will star in his film adaptation of horror story 'The Birds'. Hitchcock is obsessed with Tippi sexually and,when she rebuffs his advances,sadistically puts her through five days of filming where she is attacked and injured by real birds. Hitchcock's wife Alma and his assistant Peggy are appalled but can do nothing. Tippi is resolved that she will not give in to Hitchcock despite the situation giving her nightmares. Hitchcock and Tippi make a second film,'Marnie'. Having admitted that Alma is the only woman he has ever had sex with and that he now finds her cold Hitchcock continues to pursue Tippi, bombarding her with phone calls declaring his love for her yet reminding her that he alone made her famous and she owes him. At this stage Tippi demands that her contract be terminated and an end title states that they never ... Written by don @ minifie-1

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

bird | model | blonde | director | actress | See All (79) »

Taglines:

He made her his star. And his darkest obsession.

Genres:

Biography | Drama

Certificate:

TV-14 | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK | South Africa | USA | Germany

Language:

English

Release Date:

20 October 2012 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Girl See more »

Filming Locations:

South Africa

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Both Sean Connery and Louise Latham, who respectively played Tippi Hedren's husband and mother in the final, repeatedly told interviewers that they had seen nothing untoward in Alfred Hitchcock's behavior towards Hedren during shooting. See more »

Goofs

In one scene, Hitchcock and the screenwriter of 'Marnie' conduct a conversation in the back of a car en route to the studio. In external shots, the car is seen driving on the right (on temporarily closed roads) but in internal shots the car is driving on the left. The film was made in South Africa, where cars drive on the left. See more »

Quotes

[Evan Hunter, writer of the screenplay for The Birds, disagrees with Hitchcock about the casting of Tippi Hedren]
Evan Hunter: A seven-year contract?
Alfred Hitchcock: Her inexperience is an asset. She has nothing to un-learn. Also she's unattached so she won't get pregnant. I do *hate* it when actresses get pregnant.
Evan Hunter: I thought you were kidding.
Alfred Hitchcock: [grimly] As is well-known, I have no sense of humor whatsoever.
See more »

Connections

References The Birds (1963) See more »

Soundtracks

Tristan And Isolde: Act I Prelude
Written by Richard Wagner
Performed by Daniel Barenboim (as Daniel Baranboim)
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User Reviews

 
Getting Hitched
7 August 2013 | by tomsviewSee all my reviews

Wow! Is that really what happened? In many biographies about Alfred Hitchcock, the most Tippi Hedren ever said about the incident when Alfred Hitchcock supposedly propositioned her was, "Demands were made of me that I could not acquiesce to." But in "The Girl", Toby Jones' Hitchcock puts it right out there when he says to Sienna Miller's Tippi Hedren, "From now on, I want you to make yourself sexually available to me at all times. Whatever I want you to do, whenever I want you to do it."

Possibly it happened that way, Tippi Hedren seems to have been consulted by the filmmakers. My feeling is that where there was that much smoke there had to be fire, but just how fair is "The Girl"?

The movie is nothing less than interesting. Toby Jones is amazing, and Sienna Miller more than holds her own, but opinion over the film is divided. On one side are those outraged that Hitchcock's reputation has been besmirched without a chance to defend himself, while on the other are those outraged at what Hitchcock appears to have done to Tippi Hedren.

"The Girl" relates how Alfred Hitchcock groomed the inexperienced Hedren to star in "The Birds" and "Marnie". During the process, Hitchcock changed from mentor to monster becoming totally obsessed with her. Eventually he made an overt sexual advance. She refused and that was the end of the relationship.

One scene in "The Girl" does undermine it. It's the somewhat salacious screen test where Hitchcock asks Hedren to give Martin Balsam a long lingering kiss. Unfortunately for the makers of "The Girl", the actual test clip is fairly well known from documentaries and YouTube, and is a lot less threatening than the recreation. In reality, Balsam and Hedren actually seem quite comfortable with each other. It was silly to overdo a scene that is so accessible; it leaves you wondering how much over-egging went on with the rest of the custard.

The difference between Hedren and Hitchcock's other leading ladies was that they were better able to handle him. Most were established stars, surrounded by husbands, boyfriends and agents, but Hedren didn't have all that; she was just starting out and was far more vulnerable.

According to some sources, it was about this time that Hitchcock's judgement also seemed to be slipping. The suppressed voyeuristic tendencies and fantasies that helped inform his great films were taking on a harder edge. He now wanted to be explicit in what he showed.

Up until then, the Motion Picture Production Code kept him in check. Would films like "Rear Window", "Vertigo" or even "Psycho" be the enduring classics they are today if Hitchcock had been allowed to go all the way? The censor made him innovative and subtle. However, by the late 60's the Code was gone. No one ever ranks 1972's "Frenzy" among his greatest movies; plenty of rape and nudity on display there. Fortunately he never made "Kaleidoscope"; with what he had planned, it could have been a real legend killer.

As far as "The Girl" is concerned, maybe it's best to just enjoy the show. Toby Jones' Hitchcock is even better than his Truman Capote, genius really, the voice is perfect, and Sienna Miller is so beautiful that you can believe that a fat, old auteur could harbour a fantasy or two about her. But maybe the last words on the subject could be the classic line Hitchcock once directed at an actor who was getting a bit too worked up about things, "Don't worry, it's only a movie".


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