|The masters ... Hitchcock and Truffaut|
I don't agree that art should be judged by the behaviour of the artist - if I did, I would never be able to look at another painting by Picasso or see another Woody Allen film.
But I can think of a few impediments for the female viewer/artist with respect to Hitchcock's work – specifically the concentration on the male gaze and what might be perceived as particularly “masculine” obsessions/proclivities.
James Stewart’s efforts to physically remake Kim Novak in the image of the wife he lost in Vertigo; Anthony Perkins’ psychotic delusions about his mother and subsequent adoption of her hateful, and ultimately, murderous persona (Psycho); the punishing manner in which Hitchcock tormented Tippi Hedren both during, and after, the filming of The Birds (a tortuous interaction that Hedren herself has written about) or the scene in which Marnie (Hedren again) is raped by her husband Mark (Sean Connery) after she admits that she can't stand to be touched by a man (Marnie).
But perhaps it is best to follow Flaubert's edict: "We should not touch our idols; their gilding will remain on our hands."
TIFF OF THE DAY: Of the three female directors whom Jones approached, one said she had nothing to say on Mr. Hitchcock. The second was unsure of herself on camera and the third was immersed in pre-production work and unable to participate. That pretty much wiped out the number of female directorial voices in Hollywood.