The Master of Suspense, Alfred Hitchcock is one of history’s most skilled directors, known for his expert abilities in the thriller genre. Hitchcock was extremely prolific, directing over 50 feature films over a career that spanned about as many years.
Of course, not all of Hitchcock’s films are of the same caliber. Having begun his career in England, Hitchcock did his best work once he relocated to Hollywood. It didn’t take him long to receive accolades – his first American film, “Rebecca,” already won the Academy Award for Best Picture in 1941.
In the 1950s he would direct some of his best-known and most critically acclaimed films, including “Vertigo,” “North by Northwest,” and “Rear Window.” These films are still popular with audiences today, often appearing on television and screened in theaters.
Many of the films that are considered Hitchcock’s worst were made before “Rebecca.” One could argue that the reason for this is that the director had yet to master his craft. The few Hitchcock movies released in the late 60s and 70s – including “Torn Curtain,” “Topaz,” and “Family Plot” – are also considered to be lesser works. By this time, Hitchcock, who was born in the late 19th century, was himself in his 60s and 70s and may have had trouble adjusting to a changing Hollywood that was giving young auteurs more creative control over their work. Still, these late films are not included among Hitchcock’s very worst on our list.
As the director’s nickname implies, he was at his best when directing suspense flicks. Almost all of the highest ranked films on this list take the viewer on an intense ride, with excitement, surprise, and anxiety spilling out of nearly every frame.
To determine the best and worst films directed by Alfred Hitchcock, 24/7 Wall St. created an index based on each film’s Rotten Tomatoes’ average critic rating, Rotten Tomatoes’ average audience rating, and Internet Movie Database’s average user rating. To be considered, each film needed to have data available for all three metrics.
We averaged the user ratings from Rotten Tomatoes and IMDb and weighted these by the number of votes for each. The combined user rating was then averaged with the Rotten Tomatoes critic rating. The year released, starring actors, and awards won for each film came from IMDb.