The Ten Most Important MacGuffins in the History of Cinema

A MacGuffin is basically a gimmick utilized by a screenwriter to create motivation for a film’s characters. Here’s a look at ten MacGuffins that have transcended their stigma to become something much more important and influential.

During a discussion about one of his films, Alfred Hitchcock used the term “MacGuffin” to describe one of his techniques. He explained it succinctly as, “the device, the gimmick, if you will...In crook stories it is almost always the necklace, and in spy stories it is most always the papers." A MacGuffin can be an object, a person, a place, or an event. In most cases, it is something that the film’s primary characters are looking for. However, the exact nature of a MacGuffin is not supposed to be overly important to the audience. In reality, the MacGuffin has hardly any substance beyond its purpose on screen, it is irrelevant

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