Alfred Hitchcock’s Best and Worst Movies

Source: Courtesy of TGG Direct

43. Jamaica Inn (1939)
> Starring: Maureen O’Hara, Robert Newton, Charles Laughton
> Runtime: 108 min

The adventure thriller is one of three movies Hitchcock had adapted from plays written by Daphne du Maurier. Of the three, “Jamaica Inn” is the worst rated. According to Jonathan Rosenbaum from Chicago Reader, “by common consent, one of Alfred Hitchcock’s poorest and least personal works.” The movie is about a young woman who is staying at a hotel owned by her uncle that serves as a base for a gang of criminals.

Source: Courtesy of the Criterion Collection

42. When Boys Leave Home (1927)
> Starring: Ivor Novello, Ben Webster, Norman McKinnel
> Runtime: 80 min

“When the Boys Leave Home” may be better known as “Downhill.” The story about a boy who falls into the European underworld after he gets expelled from boarding school for something he didn’t do is well-liked by critics on Rotten Tomatoes, who gave the film an 83% score. The audience was less generous, with only 30% liking the silent movie.

Source: Courtesy of British Film Institute (BFI)

41. The Farmer’s Wife (1928)
> Starring: Jameson Thomas, Lillian Hall-Davis, Gordon Harker
> Runtime: 112 min

“The Farmer’s Wife” is a romantic comedy about a wealthy widower who wants to remarry but can’t find a suitable new bride. Most critics liked the film, with 90% giving it a positive review. Dave Kehr from the Chicago Reader wrote, “Hitchcock disliked the film, but it offers an unusual glimpse of the master before he settled into thrillers.” Only 33% of the audience liked the movie though.

Source: Courtesy of Universal Pictures

40. Topaz (1969)
> Starring: Frederick Stafford, Dany Robin, John Vernon
> Runtime: 143 min

“Topaz,” one of Hitchcock’s last feature films, is about an international spy ring working for the Soviet Union to uncover NATO secrets. Not many critics liked the movie, with Time Magazine writing that “at 70, Hitchcock seems suddenly to have forgotten his own recipe.” The thriller has just a 36% audience score.

Source: Courtesy of Warner Bros.

39. Mr. & Mrs. Smith (1941)
> Starring: Carole Lombard, Robert Montgomery, Gene Raymond
> Runtime: 95 min

Mr. and Mrs Smith are a couple who turn out not to be legally married. The movie is about Mr. Smith trying to win Mrs. Smith’s heart again. The romantic comedy is called “chucklesome” by Theodore Strauss from The New York Times and “bland screwball” by Dennis Schwartz from Dennis Schwartz Movie Reviews. Just 48% of those who rated the film on Rotten Tomatoes liked it.

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