Though this video essay is not even two minutes long, it is full of engaging material and provides great insight not only into the role of the eye in the films of Alfred Hitchcock, but also in how to craft an impactful video essay.

When I first watched this essay, I forgot to turn the sound on. Once I realized my mistake, I turned it on and watched it again. I was disappointed. The sound in the video essay is a just a random creepy song, and detracts from the images on the screen. The sound is meant to mimic that of a Hitchcock film and add suspense to the video essay, however, it comes across as cheesy and forced. When I watched the essay without the sound, I found it to be far more impactful. Without the sound we’re forced the stare directly into the eyes of whichever character is on screen. We feel a deeper connection with them because we’re forced to confront the emotion(s) on their fact, not the emotion the music may be trying to elicit. In Hitchcock’s films, he often uses silence as a way to make his audience feel even more uncomfortable because we expect someone to scream or cry or yell. In a video essay, we expect there to be some kind of sound, whether it’s narration, music, or sound from the film itself. I think this essay would have been more impactful had it not used sound.

One of the things I really enjoyed about the video essay was the way in which it was edited. The film clips are edited in such a way that the eyes of the different figures are all in the same quadrant and general location on the screen. If you make eye contact with the first set of eyes, you don’t have to move your own to make contact with the rest. This allows us to better focus on the eyes themselves, which, of course, is kogonada’s intention. It may seem weird to edit a great work of art, however, it’s essentially because the video essay turns the film into something else, and editing is quite necessary. By taking Hitchcock’s work and editing it to fit the essay, to create a feeling, we are able to derive new meaning from his work.