Posts Tagged Hitchcock

Strike a light

And finally on Vertigo, an extended scene which captures many of the film’s key themes – obsession, a hint of necrophilia, love (of sorts), the echoes of the past – and features a beautiful example of one of the defining aspects of the film, in the use of the green neon light.

The next time you have a shade over 2 hours to spare, just sit down and watch it.

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In the beginning

One of the things that struck me when re-watching Vertigo was how pleasant it is to have the credits up front: I’m much more alert, actually take an interest in the wider team who made the film, and don’t need to think “well I’d best turn this off and put the DVD away before it gets muddled up with Star Wars, The Wiggles, and Cars 2”.

This also gives me the excuse to listen to the music again [shudder].

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Don’t. Look. Down…

There is no end of discussion about this technique from those who know proper technical things about film and cameras and stuff. I know none of this stuff, but I am pretty confident in asserting this to be some kind of genius.

(nice little plot teaser at the end by the way)

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Messing with the middle-ear

I don’t normally pay enough attention to film soundtracks. Bernard Herrmann’s score for Vertigo, however, grabs me right by the, well, the hairs on the back of my neck. It’s edgy, it’s creepy, it’s noisy, it’s quiet, it’s perfectly atmospheric, and it can quite easily unsettle the hell out of me.

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Great Scottie

More laziness, but frankly the content is so good you won’t begrudge me it. Or you will, but it won’t make any difference: an exercise in futility (something I’m familiar with).

Despite wittering on about Vertigo (or getting someone else to do it for me) a while back, I more recently watched it for the first time in a long time, and I realised I’d actually forgotten much of the plot detail. This was a good thing as I was able to rediscover it, watching it through new eyes to an extent, and making an extra effort to absorb as much of the detail and nuances as possible. Suffice to say I found it quite a profound experience and I’ve been mildly obsessed with it ever since (appropriately enough, seeing as obsession is at the very core of the film).

A sequence I find sofa-grippingly fantastic is where James Stewart’s character, ‘Scottie’, has a nightmare. I’ll not give any context, not for fear of revealing too much about the film but because I can’t be bothered.

Look, I’m barely posting at all, for lord’s sake don’t expect effort.

That said, if you do know the film, the bits of the nightmare where Carlotta Valdes appears scare me more than is explicable.

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In the beginning

One of the things that was brought home to me when re-watching Vertigo was how surprisingly pleasant it is to have the credits right up front at the beginning of the film: I’m a bit more alert and paying a bit more attention, rather than thinking “right, best put the DVD back in the box before it gets muddled up with Star Wars, The Wiggles, and Cars 2”.

It’s also a nice excuse to listen to the music again [shudder].

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Vertigo (Alfred Hitchcock, 1958)

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