The presence of comic tones in the plot structure of spy thrillers has become the trademark of Alfred Hitchcock's films as early as in his British period. The master of suspense did not avoid making films in which the spirit of comedy determined the tone a film work although critics paid no particular attention to such productions as 'The Farmer's Wife' and 'Number Seventeen'. Humour in Hitchcock's movies performed a double function: firstly, it established a platform from which the viewer could have a look at the plot events from a different angle and achieve detachment from the depicted world; secondly, it could be a component of film tension and provide verbal and visual clues relating to the main plot. The author refrains from analyzing comic elements in Hitchcock's criminal or spy thrillers but focuses on films in which the comedy tone becomes dominant: 'Rich and Strange', 'Mr. and Mrs. Smith', 'The Trouble with Harry', 'To Catch a Thief' and 'North by Northwest'.
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