Bopping with Niall JP O'Leary

Niall O'Leary insists on sharing his hare-brained notions and hysterical emotions. Personal obsessions with cinema, literature, food and alcohol feature regularly.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Obssessive about 'Vertigo'

Jimmy Stewart falls for Kim Novak in VertigoJimmy Stewart falls for Kim Novak in 'Vertigo'
Switched on the telly and saw that 'Vertigo' was just starting. I just had to keep on watching for the millionth time. After all there is a reason why it figures so frequently at the top of critics' lists. One of the cruellest movies ever made. Fantastic!
There are lighting effects in that movie (eg. the neon-lit exterior of the Hotel Empire) that I have seen many a director try to mimic (Dario Argento at the start of 'Inferno', for instance), but they're invariably shoddy in comparison. Hitchcock knew what he was trying to achieve, an unreal, obssessive quality. This stylisation gives the whole film a dreamlike quality, augmented immeasurably by the ever-present Herrmann score.
I found it a bit disconcerting to see it being broadcast as 'The Family Movie' though. Family! Sexual obsession, murder, fantasy and more Freud than you can shake a big phallic stick at! Definitely one for the kids!
(And by a strange coincidence I ended up watched another Hitchcock gem, 'Shadow of a Doubt,' last night. "But they're still human," screams Teresa Wright at her psycho uncle (a masterful Joseph Cotton) who doesn't like fat, wealthy widows. "Are they, Charlie? Are they really?")

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At 10:15 am, Blogger red said...

One director I haven't seen enough by is Hitchcock. The Major is always chiding me about it. I do love Vertigo though- it was my first Hitchcock film.


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