il primo cinema “giallo”

While in America the adventure films were becoming a big hit (grande successo), the British cinema saw the development (sviluppo) of silent documentaries. The pioneer in this field is John Grierson (1898-1972), who, in 1929, sailed on board of a drifter (imbarcazione) with his camera (cinepresa) to shoot a documentary movie (per filmare un documentario) about fisher folk (pescatori). His example was followed by Stuart Legg (1910-1988), founder (fondatore)  of BBC channel, the voice of England, who shot Song of Ceylon  (1934) and by Harry Watt (1906-1987) director of The Short Night – Mail (1936), an exploration of the British postal system with rapid trains that deliver post at night. As to the topics (temi), the British cinema industry started exploiting (sfruttare)  its most typical cultural tradition, the crime story. The thriller authors (scrittori di gialli) John Buchan and Edgar Wallace became the source (fonte) of a vigorous and powerful cinematic tradition. The central figure was Alfred Hitchcock (1899-1980) especially with his “classic thriller”, The Thirty-Nine Steps (1935) and The Lady Vanishes (1938) now recognized as screen “classics” (classici dello schermo). Hitchcock was also one of the first directors who used sound in the film Blackmail (Ricatto – 1929), the first British “talkie” (film parlato) , before moving to Hollywood. These films were made with modest budgets and limited ambition, whereas (mentre) the large American market required more sumptuous and rich films with elaborate costumes and settings.