Dr. Rich Edwards

Daily Dose #19: Real Identities (Opening Scene of Marnie)

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1. Based on the opening sequence alone, what do you feel you already know about Marnie as a character? In what ways does Hitchcock visually reveal her character through her interaction with objects.

 

Marnie appears to be: Smart. Careful. Experienced. Posh. Clever. Secretive. Beautiful. Fashionable. Ladylike. Worldly. Sneaky. Self-confident. A risk-taker. Conniving. Calculating.

 

If we didn’t know better, she may be a spy performing a mission, rather than a thief.

 

Oh, and BTW… as it turns out she’s a lustrous blonde, after all!

 

 

2. How does Hitchcock use Bernard Herrmann's score in this scene?

 

Keeping on the spy thing (have I mentioned I love Sean Connery?), the first part of the score sounds a bit like the beginning of a James Bond film. Watching Marnie pack up clothes, money, and hidden Social Security cards is kind of like watching 007 prepare for reconnaissance mission with a foreign agent… or something.

 

For me, the music is reminiscent of the haunting, foreboding piece used in Sense and Sensibility (prior to the Main Theme), when Marianne is walking in the rain toward Willoughby’s house, at which point she becomes gravely ill. All the while, we are sympathizing with her broken heart. (

) The movements in the Marnie piece have a similar sympathetic, foreboding effect here. In both cases, we see a character doing something that isn’t emotionally healthy.

 

 

3. Did you see any variation in what Hitchcock is doing with his cameo in this film, and what do you think that variation means? 

 

At first, Hitch briefly watches the woman walking away as if wondering, “Is that the same woman I saw earlier?”

 

Then, Mr. Hitchcock looks right at me! And I could see in his eyes that he wanted me to keep an eye on that woman with the yellow purse, because something is askew there.

 

- - -

 

As for what it means that Hitch is now suddenly bringing me (us) into the film instead of ignoring me and seeing if I can spot him in a cameo… Well… I think he knows we’re all onto him by now… and he wants to play with us a bit. “Hello, audience. Did you just see that? Let’s see how this story unfolds… together.”

 

It’s also clever because, by acknowledging us, he admits (visually) that he could just stop the movie right there and tell us what’s going on and how it all ends up (or intro it like he did his TV programs), but… no. We must watch and wait to see it for ourselves.

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1.

-Marnie is secretive

-She is alone in the world

-She is an expert at disguise or transformation using cosmetics, nail polish, lingerie, fashion.

-She's extremely organized and a precise, deliberate planner.

-She's able to discard things, let them go, almost wastefully. She's formed no attachment to them.

-That she's carrying lots of cash implies she's criminal or illicit in some way.

-That she's not in a hurry implies she's in no immediate danger but is control of her situation.

-She seems to only choose identities with first names that start with "M".

-The last name she used was "Marion" (a nod to Marion Crane of "The Birds")

-She's a blonde now.

-She can carry off many deceits and subterfuges.

-She's emotionally controlled 

 

Hitchcock shows us she's "done" with her old brunette identity by having her casually toss those items into a suitcase. She tenderly and carefully handles the "new" items and keeps them in their packaging and arranges them nicely. 

 

Hitchcock shows us she's made this transformation before by having her handle the items with a routine, practiced air. She's not thinking while she's working but is going through familiar motions.

 

Hitchcock shows us she doesn't really "care" about money by having her toss it messily into the suitcase. He also has her casually toss the beautiful new boxes and wrappings of her newly bought wardrobe on the floor. She's simply starting a new life- not becoming attached to things and cherishing them. There's a coldness to her. 

 

By having her drop the key into the grate in public, he's showing that she has a certain amount of risk taking & creativity. Her movements are as subtle as a pickpocket's or a magician's. It will not be hard to believe that this woman is a practiced thief and has tricked many people (men).

 

The way she carefully pries open her card case is also thief like. She's "picking" the lock of a secret compartment. Her perfectly manicured hands tell us she pays attention to the very smallest details. 

 

2. The music seems to act in a way similar to the scene in North by Northwest that we analyzed. Herrmann softens the moment. By surrounding her in a swirl of romantic themes, he softens her the way a cameraman might by using a soft focus lens. The music tells us, this is not a lowlife heartless criminal from the streets. This is a woman caught up in a fantasy life- a semi-tragic one. There is a humanity to her story- one that involves love and loss. When you hear the music you are moved to find romance and pathos in what you are seeing. It's not tawdry, sordid, nasty.

 

3. This cameo seems pretty blatant. He's no longer playing any fun little tricks. He's coming right out at the beginning and even looking at the camera! He's like "Hello, I'm here. You know it, I know. So what?" I think it's pretty funny but also provocative. It seems to echo everything I'm hearing about the way he was acting behind the scenes too. He's not afraid to claim full authorship and control.  He's not afraid of stealing Hedron's limelight or disrupting the flow of what she's doing. He's absolutely breaking the fourth wall and acting like the Leo he is! His boldness echoes Marnie's boldness. He comes right out in public and dares the audience to be distracted.  I think it means that he's pushing the boundaries of the traditional director. What if he did start walking in and out of scenes?  Would the audience be surprised or bothered? His presence is so strongly felt BEHIND the camera that it's not a surprise to see him in front of it. 

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but we can never be certain what Hitchcock had in mind, can we? For example, we know that he used multiple recurring plot devices (such as a key in Notorious and Marnie, an item falling through a grate in Strangers on a Train and ​Marnie, water going down a drain in Psycho and Marnie​, etc.; even his recurring use of scenes on a train and icy blondes, but did Hitchcock ever discuss the personal meanings these things had for him?

 

Don't forget 'Dial M for Murder' I believe Hitch has cryptically over the span of his career left more clear meanings in his interviews however indirectly almost like clues if not directly. I'd say the only time it is most obvious is when the auteur says so directly whatever the topic. Sometimes they dropped their guard perhaps the ego getting the better of them...

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  1. 1. Marnie's character reveal:

     

We discover she has a real fashion sense (top quality brands, coordinating outfits) very fastidious in her care of one suitcase. Yet, there is a disdain (tosses her garments) for the other suitcase associated with another persona.  She is changing before our eyes (new hair color, new ID). When she ditches the locker key, we know she isn't coming back for those items. Questions as to why she is changing abound, all the cash.. Countless echos toward previous Hitch films.

 

 

 

2.Bernard Herrmann's score: 

 

​   

 

Herrmann's score has a haunting repetition that adds to the mystique of the MC. The musical motifs repeat from many prior films including Hitch's love of trains, train whistles, announcer calling out departures, etc. 

 

 

 

 

 

3. Hitchcock's cameo:

 

 

 

Typically, he seeks a sort of an innocuous anonymity (like, where's Waldo). After 48 previous cameos, he's telling us early and pointedly--"Here I am. See me? Now, quit searching and focus on the film."

 

 

 

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From the opening sequence of Marnie we know her character is young, attractive, in transit, mysterious, incognito, well dressed, uses an assumed identity, and has a lot of cash.  Visually she is well posed meaning she carries herself with the ease and confidence of a high fashion runway model.  She appears to be very neat, precise and organized in the way she packs her new clothes into the suitcase. We are apparently witnessing a routine (and most likely a crime) she has performed many times over like a skillfully executed covert operation.

 

Hitchcock uses Bernard Herrmann’s score in his usual way by building the suspense within the scene using a slow and low, mellow background soundtrack accompanying wide shots, medium shots and close ups of the action until Marnie, the mystery woman, washes and rinses herself off her former identity.  (And I’m counting on my classmates with the musical expertise to give us the breakdown of technically what we are hearing) but as she morphs into her real or new persona, Herrmann’s score builds to a crescendo sounding very much like the track he performed for Kim Novak’s transformation in Vertigo.

 

I believe this is the first time Hitchcock actually looks into the camera during his cameo.  Maybe he’s experimenting with a new approach as to how he puts his signature on his films and this is his way of saying, “I’m still here, and this is my new and improved (1964) style!”

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Based on the opening sequence alone, what do you feel you already know about Marnie as a character? In what ways does Hitchcock visually reveal her character through her interaction with objects.

 

We discover that Marnie is a dishonest person. Stacks of cash, multiple identities & changing hair color adds up to something fishy.

 

How does Hitchcock use Bernard Herrmann's score in this scene?

 

The musuc creates a mood of suspense or perhaps intrigue. Upon fist seeing Marnie's face, the music accentuates the reveal.

 

Did you see any variation in what Hitchcock is doing with his cameo in this film, and what do you think that variation means?

 

The cameo is funny. Hitch enters the hallway looking at Marnie then looks into the camera briefly (breaking the 4th wall) to see that we have caught him checkin' out the babe.

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Based on the opening sequence alone, you feel you already know Marnie runs on a 'criminal' element of some sort.

If she isn't a spy, she's a grafter with those fake IDs.

She attracts 'attention' as she did with Hitchcock in the cameo (could be a weapon and a curse in her story ie. Dye).

Hate to say it, but Bernard's score sounded heavily like a James Bond theme.

Sean Connery is in the film as well by no coincidence.

Secret Agent music-esque.

I noticed Hitchcock in his cameo this time looks directly at you the viewer breaking the 4th wall.

I don't know if he's done that yet but that technique unites the film and the audience as one.

And he did it in the opening minute.

 

 

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  1. Based on the opening sequence alone, what do you feel you already know about Marnie as a character? In what ways does Hitchcock visually reveal her character through her interaction with objects.

In this opening scene, Marnie appears to be a woman of mystery--a chameleon, although we do not know why.  She is beautiful with expensive looking clothing, shoes, compact, wallet, luggage, etc. She also appears ladylike--the white gloves and elegant suit and hairdo.  Although she seems to choose expensive, fine objects, and takes care in the way she packs her new clothes, the way she just throws and stuffs her old clothing into her old suitcase indicates these objects are no longer important or of use to her.  Also, the way she just throws aside the boxes seems to communicate to the audience her disregard for these things.

The multiple Social Security cards with different IDs and the bundles of cash tell the audience that this is no ordinary woman.  The hair color change, the railroad, the hotel, and the locker communicate that she is on the move--for unknown reasons.  It reminds me of a reptile shedding its skin.  The color palette is also significant:  blacks, white and grey changes to more earthtone/neutral/warmer hair, clothing, suitcase, purse. 

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2. How does Hitchcock use Bernard Herrmann's score in this scene?

 

The music seems to be suspenseful as the movie opens and as Marnie is transforming herself, rising to a crescendo as we see her face for the first time as she rises from the sink after washing out the black hair dye. 

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3. Did you see any variation in what Hitchcock is doing with his cameo in this film, and what do you think that variation means? 

 

I didn't see any variation in Hitchcock's cameo.  The only thing I noticed was that he looked at the woman walking past in the hallway and perhaps he was extremely visible (although I remember one of his cameos where he is on a train and he interacts with an annoying little boy).  Hitchcock is an older man in a dark suit and tie leaving his room.  Could be a dirty old man!

 

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1)  My feelings about the opening scene of 'Marnie' is that this is a woman on the run and she doesn't seem as if she is scared. She to me seems like the cat that swallowed the bird! That Margaret is pleased with herself that she just got away with a lot of money and is off to start her 'new life'.  And by Hitch showing us the many id cards she may have done this before. Moving swiftly and coldly through the motions of swapping lives (the taking of the clothes for the boxes and putting them into the new suitcase and the washing out of the black dye) like an old pro, it seems 'Margaret' has been at this for some time.

 

 

2)  To me the use of Herrman's score is almost like a music video performance. Back in the day music videos USE TO TELL A STORY WITH THE MUSIC. They were mini movies set to music and you got the jest of the song by looking at the video. Well this seems the same..you have a woman getting off the train and going to the hotel and in her room she transforms herself into the 'new and improved' Margaret Edgar. The timing and pacing of the scene (via film score) is setting us up to the beginning of our story. It sucks you in and makes you want to know what's next for her.

 

 

3) Here again Hitch is the everyday man in his cameo. A man stepping out his room and he catches a glance a a pretty girl. Makes you think is he interested...does he want to follow this gorgeous lady and see what room she's in...is he curious to see what her face look likes...does he want to introduce himself or admire from afar...should he be impulsive??? WHO IS THIS MYSTERY WOMAN?!  ;)

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The only thing we know about Marnie from the opening scene is that she is a woman of many identities. Without seeing her face, we know that when she changes her identity, she changes everything that goes with that - her hair, her clothing, everything. And then again, we see her flip through several social security cards, and we see that she has multiple identities at her disposal. The audience is already privy to more information than the other characters in the film have because we know from the beginning that she is not what she seems but only playing a role. 

 

The score does a good job in that it does not do much in setting up the feel of the movie. Yes we see her changing identities but there is no foreboding or whimsical character to the music so we do not know what her multiple identities imply. The crescendo only comes when the audience sees her face for the first time, minutes into the opening, but again there is no real mood set. 

 

I did not see any variation in Hitchcock's cameo in this scene compared to his in The Birds. I think that another actor, man or woman, could have played the role of another hotel guest noticing Tippi Hedren's character, and so I do not see how it contributing to the film. 

 

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Based on the opening sequence alone, what do you feel you already know about Marnie as a character?

 

I feel that I know that Marnie is many different people, none of whom seem to have the name Marnie. First she's got dark hair, then she's blond. She's got two suitcases, one is neatly packed while the other just has clothing and personal effects thrown into it. She has several social security cards with several different names. She's an imposter, we don't really know who she is from the opening sequence.

 

In what ways does Hitchcock visually reveal her character through her interaction with objects.

How does Hitchcock use Bernard Herrmann's score in this scene?

 

Through objects, I would say her character is someone who enjoys the finer things in life. The music is sinister sounding, adding to the notion that she is not what she seems.

 

Did you see any variation in what Hitchcock is doing with his cameo in this film, and what do you think that variation means?

 

In previous cameos, Hitchcock either has his back to the camera or he passes through the scene. In a couple of films, he appears in a photograph. In this cameo, Hitchcock looks directly at the camera. I think he's letting viewers know that he knows they are looking for him in his films.

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Based on the opening sequence alone, what do you feel you already know about Marnie as a character? In what ways does Hitchcock visually reveal her character through her interaction with objects.

 

First of all, I have to say that the yellow purse always bothered me. The color doesn't seem to go with the suit she's wearing. I think that's significant. We never learn anything about the persona she is leaving behind, perhaps the incongruous wardrobe choices are part of that identity. From this opening we know that the woman is changing identities. I never thought about it until watching this sequence, but she does not put the social security card of Marion Holland back in the space behind her mirror. This makes me think that she discards each identity when she's finished with it. What she's doing seems rehearsed. She's done this many times before. 

 

I also noticed this time watching this clip that she gets rid of every piece of clothing from her previous identity even the underwear. And the clothing she is putting into the new suitcase has neutral colors, clean lines. The boxes seem to be from an upscale store. The suit she wears when she stores the old suitcase is elegant. She is young, beautiful and I get the feeling she uses that to get what she wants.

 

About her hair, we never see Marnie's face when she's got black hair. Perhaps she does look very different than when her hair is light brown or blond, and that's why Strutt doesn't recognize her when he visits Rutland's office. I mean, he does think she looks vaguely familiar, but he can't place her face. One of my favorite segments in this clip is when she is washing the black out of her hair and then she rises up and we finally see her face. It's as if she's washing away the "sin" of stealing.

 

How does Hitchcock use Bernard Herrmann's score in this scene?

 

I'm with you Dr. Edwards, I love the score for this movie. It does illustrate the different states of mind that Marnie goes through so beautifully. As the clip begins the music is suspenseful. There is a hint of danger. It doesn't change in tone until she begins to wash the black out of her hair. Then the music builds toward a hopeful feeling as we see her face for the first time. She looks almost angelic. Also later in the film as Marnie has the dreams, and freaks out when she sees red, or red on white, the music reflects her disturbed mental state.

 

Did you see any variation in what Hitchcock is doing with his cameo in this film, and what do you think that variation means?

 

This cameo of Hitchcock is different in that he looks at the retreating back of Marnie. If I recall correctly, we never see him even acknowledge the main character if he is in the same frame with them, as in The Birds. Most of the time he's not even in the same sequence as the main character. I can't be in the mind of Hitchcock, but to me it could mean that Marnie is not only a beautiful woman that most people would notice, but also that her character is different than almost all of the other leading characters in his movies. 

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First off I have to say that up until now, Marnie has not been one of my favorite Hitchcock movies.

Haven't seen it in many years and had forgotten most of the plot.

But, with taking this class and trying to identify different elements of the opening scene, I feel

there will be a definite air of suspense and mystery, as the story unravels, which always garners

my attention.

 

Especially, when she changes her identities, which happens frequently. Having seen the many social

security cards. What identity shall I assume this time?

We know she is a thief and con artist as we watch the money tumble out of her purse.

She is a woman of mystery. Disposing of her old clothes in the train station locker, and

embarking on her new journey; dressing more upper crust this time, like a rich socialite.

Now that Marnie is a cool icy blonde this time around, the hairstyle is reminiscent of Kim Novak

in VERTIGO or Melanie (Tippi Hedren) in The Birds.

 

Which brings me to the many clues that refer back to several other Hitchcock movies.

The money being stolen in PSYCHO. Also, washing the black dye out of her hair, which to me is

a reference to the blood washing down the drain in PSYCHO. The grate from STRANGERS ON A TRAIN.

The key from NOTORIOUS, and DIAL M FOR MURDER.

Hitch's cameo as he looks directly into the camera,and then back to Marnie makes me think he wants

us to definitely notice her, paying detailed attention and the mystery that surrounds her.

 

The Bernard Herrmann's score adds a suspenseful quality as well. Since there is no dialogue at that

particular time, it steers the plot, and attracts our emotions.

 

Looking forward to watching Marnie with a renewed interest.

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1.  The scene opens with a dark haired woman, we do not see her face as she walks down the hall into her room. She is carrying a bright yellow purse that the camera appears to focus on possibly carrying something of interest. The scene reveals to us a woman of mystery who is trying to hide her identity and or change it.  She is packing two suitcases, one very carefully with brand new clothing and in the other suticase she thows items in as if to discard them.  She empties a large sum of money out of the yellow purse into the carefully packed suitcase suggesting a criminal/nefarious basis for her behavior.  We do not see her face until she washes out the dye from her hair.  Where she is revealed to be a very beautiful woman. She has number of fake social insurance cards and selects her next identity by placing one of  the cards into her wallet.  She switches from the bright yellow to purse to a biege one. It is obvious she is abandoning one identity for another which  is confirmed when she disposes of her second suitcase in a locker along with the key

 

2.. The Bernard Hermann score complements the feeling if mystery and intrigue created by the visuals. The mood and atmosphere suggested by the music reflects a sense of suspense as opposed to horror that is so nicely intertwined with the action on the screen. The tempo doesn't change until the dye is washed out of her hair and then crescendo  the beautiful blonde is revealed along with a new identity.  It serves to change the pace, by revealing her face at least one piece of the mystery is revealed.  Then no music as we enter the train station, hearing only boarding calls where the second suitcase is abandoned in a locker and the key discarded.

 

3.  The ever so slight variation in Hitchcock's cameo is created by the brief look back as he exits the door as the woman walks past.  The diffence I see in this cameo by that brief look back suggests he could be involved in the story as opposed to being present by coincidence.  Perhaps he knows the woman and is checking to see if someone is following for example, or as voyeur interested in her comings and goings.  Maybe her latest victim, after all they stay in the same building and there is that cash in her suitcase.  

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1. Based on the opening sequence alone, what do you feel you already know about Marnie as a character? In what ways does Hitchcock visually reveal her character through her interaction with objects.

 

Hitchcock has selected the purse as an object that represents and contains the complete counterfeit identity of Marnie.  Hitchcock’s camera focuses in close up on this purse that is a canary yellow color that stands in contrast to the near colorless hallway where we see Marie walking from behind.  Even her brown suit and her dark hair contribute to the production design. We see by the various bogus social security cards and stacks of money that she tosses into a suitcase that she has likely stolen money from a business or individual.  With her bags packed, she is ready to move on to her next crime.

 

 

2. How does Hitchcock use Bernard Herrmann's score in this scene?

 

Bernard Herrmann had written many iconic scores long before he worked with Hitchcock including scores for Citizen Cane and The Ghost and Mrs. Muir. This six-note refrain that crosses into various keys used at the beginning of this clip is signatory to Herrmann’s repertoire as a composer.  I’ve heard this familiar musical refrain in other films and even television shows such as The Alfred Hitchcock Hour.  As an underscore, the music signifies feelings of anxiety, detachment and loss.   The music begins to shift from melancholy to a more uplifting sensibility as the camera reveals Marnie's true personage with blond hair that she triumphantly sweeps back after purging the black dye.  The visuals and the lush score let us know that this is the actual Marnie.  So, if this is the real Marnie, what is she doing? What is she hiding?  Who is she hiding from?

 

 

 

3. Did you see any variation in what Hitchcock is doing with his cameo in this film, and what do you think that variation means?

 

This is the first cameo that Hitchcock makes eye contact with the camera.  Hitchcock is not trying to be comical here.  His intent is slightly more serious.  He seems to be breaking the fourth wall as though he slyly knows a secret about the woman with dark hair walking down the hallway that will be revealed to us as the audience.

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  1. Based on the opening sequence alone, what do you feel you already know about Marnie as a character? In what ways does Hitchcock visually reveal her character through her interaction with objects.

This is a woman who is ending one life and starting on another. She's replacing all her clothes and her identity (SS card). The old objects no longer hold any interst for her - she's literally dumping them into a another suitcase as she carefully packs new clothing into a new suitcase. even the money is tossed into the suitcase as if it were not important at all. She's carefully building a new persona right before our eyes. We see her as a brunette from behind in the beginning and we see that color and personality wash down the drain - killing the old identity like Marion is killed in Psycho - and revealed as a dazzling blond. Is this a positive change or not? We don't know as yet. Fiannly, we see her lock away the old possessions in a locker and deliberately lose the key. She has no need of it like Bruno needed the lighter and was desperate when it fell through the grate - she wants it gone. You know she has severed any connection with her recent? past.

 

2. How does Hitchcock use Bernard Herrmann's score in this scene?

The music is soft and repetitive - it leads me to sense of puzzlement - until we see the character pulling out a new SS card. It seems to change here and the change builds as we see the character wash the dark color out of her hair - a character down the drain - and  the music builds as we reveal this new character or rebirth of a character.

3. Did you see any variation in what Hitchcock is doing with his cameo in this film, and what do you think that variation means? 

 

I might be mistaken but I think its the first time Hitch looks at the camera. In his other cameos he is just passing through - faceless although we know who it is. Maybe he's saying you know who I am but do you know who this woman - Marnie - is?

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technically what we are hearing) but as she morphs into her real or new persona, Herrmann’s score builds to a crescendo sounding very much like the track he performed for Kim Novak’s transformation in Vertigo.

I think your analysis is just as good as any experts. I would agree with the Vertigo analogy as well. I think of 'Taxi Driver' as well or 'It's Alive' with Hermann's scores and specifically the use of harp. It's speaks to make belief more than other instruments like the piano or violin perhaps because Disney and many similar fantastical stories have had similar scores. The biggest draw for me subjectively speaking is these characters might be living in their heads more when I hear those particular scores. Then again the mysterious nature also plays into fantasy equally in my humble opinion.

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1.  We see that she is changing her complete personality; her hair, her clothes and her identity.  The different social security numbers could be someone on the run from something like a violent ex-husband, but the wad of money makes it seem more nefarious.  She's more likely on the run from the law.

 

2.  The music seems repetitious.  Repeating the same strains over and over until the crescendo when she is revealed to be a blonde. It could indicate that this is something she has done over and over, repeating a pattern of changing her identity.

 

3.  This time Hitch looks at the camera.  Everyone is watching for him, by this point in his career.  He's letting you see him, so we can get on with the story.

 

 

 

I've seen this movie before and I admit I've never noticed the echoes of previous films.  The key from Notorious or the grate from Strangers on a Train.  Thanks to Rich for pointing it out. It adds to my enjoyment of the film.

 

One thing I've always remembered from this film is the pronunciation of "insurance".  Whenever my sister pronounces it differently from me, I think of Marnie.

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Hi all I hope this makes sense. I’m running a low fever so I did what I could. Don’t expect my usual brilliance. ;)

 

 

 

1 Based on the opening sequence alone, what do you feel you already know about Marnie as a character? In what ways does Hitchcock visually reveal her character through her interaction with objects.

 

 

 

Everything we learn about Marnie, comes from the objects she handles. She displays no emotion. It’s just another day, ho hum. She’s bought new clothes before and torn off the labels and packed them neatly in a color coordinated suitcase. This is an old routine that works for her. She dumps a bunch of money out of the yellow purse we’ve been watching, then begins to change her identity even more. She carefully selects the next person she will morph into from several social security cards she carefully keeps in little gold case. Then there is the Vertigo transformation. She’s at the sink. Suddenly a blonde throws her head back as if she were in a Clairoil commercial. It’s Marnie. That completes her metamorphosis. And…..she’s off again, to find another caper and some more loot.

 

 

 

 

 

 

2 How does Hitchcock use Bernard Herrmann's score in this scene?

 

 

I believe Herrmann’s score punctuates the changes we feel Marnie goes through in this scene. It begins with a five note repeating melody that sweeps into determination and action as Marnie enters her room. Then the music slowly becomes very soft and flowing before Herrmann softly adds touches of sadness as she begins to pack up and change her hair. Than a victorious sting as she throws her head back as a blonde. Then a subtle tension is added to the score as she leaves for the station - then it suddenly stops when she gets to her locker. We are allowed to hear the sounds of the station as she locks up her old life and throws the key away.

 

 

 

3 Did you see any variation in what Hitchcock is doing with his cameo in this film, and what do you think that variation means?

 

 

Perhaps for the first time in his cameos (I believe), he looks right at the camera. We see him for an instant and in that moment he made

me laugh. He broke the 4th wall. A million things ran through my head as to what he could be thinking.

“Did you catch that?” referring to the hot blonde. “What are *you* doing here?”

“Why the devil are you looking at me?”

I felt like he was teasing us.

“Hey. If you’re looking at me, you are missing the

film.”

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1)  We see right from the beginning that she has different identities based on the various social security cards and the hair dye.  She is packing new, clean, pressed clothes into one suitcase and tossing wrinkled, rumpled clothes into another.  I take this to mean she is discarding one old disheveled life/identity for another new crisp, fresh one and clearly has no desire to return as she locks the old suitcase in a locker and throws the key away.

 

2)  The score is sad yet mysterious and builds to the climax of her revealing she is now blonde and essentially a new identity/person.

 

3)  This is an interesting cameo in that he clearly sees “us” and seems somewhat surprised at us following Marnie down the hallway.

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1. well, She changes her appearance as well as her identity. It looks to me like she has problems with taking things that aren't hers.

 

2. Hitch uses Hermann's score to convey the fact that something is not right and things are going to get strange.

 

3. Personally, I thought his cameo was intriguing  and I think that it meant that he was trying to be polite and not walk in front someone coming down the hall.

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tshawcross said

 

​I was a bit puzzled by her social security cards. Certainly, the multiple cards were meant to inform us that she uses multiple aliases or identities, but if she wanted to be careful about concealing her ruses, why does she carry the cards with her? Yes, I understand that they were hidden in her compact, but they would not have been hard to find. Also, why was she using an older card (6-9-59) for her new identity as Margaret Edgar? The identity she was now discarding (Marion Holland) was issued on 4-5-60. Also, based on the area codes on her social security cards (the first three numbers), she applied for her first identity in California, her second in New York, her third in California again, and her fourth in Arkansas!       

 

Margaret Edgar is Marnie's real identity.  She is changing back into herself.  That is why she keeps her old Social Security Card.

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  1. Based on the opening sequence alone, what do you feel you already know about Marnie as a character? In what ways does Hitchcock visually reveal her character through her interaction with objects.
    1. Marnie is a con artist who changes identities with regularity to cover her criminal tracks. We see little of the Black-haired Marnie – but the “new model” is celebrated with choreographed technicolor.

       

      (And isn’t Tippi Hedren also changing from The Birds’ Marion to Marnie’s Margaret?)

       

  2. How does Hitchcock use Bernard Herrmann's score in this scene?
    1. The music evokes a transformation from something dark to something beautiful (dark hair Marion to light hair Margaret). The building an swelling music puts one in the mind of a butterfly emerging from the cocoon.

       

  3. Did you see any variation in what Hitchcock is doing with his cameo in this film, and what do you think that variation means?
    1. Hitchcock first turns his gaze to “Marnie” – or is it to Tippi Hedren? Then, he breaks, or at least cracks, the fourth wall by briefly looking at us, the audience. Is he trying to tell us he is aware of our presence, and knows that we are looking for him, and that we should be looking at Marnie the character (or Marnie the film?)
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  1. Based on the opening sequence alone, what do you feel you already know about Marnie as a character? In what ways does Hitchcock visually reveal her character through her interaction with objects.

     

    She uses things, consumes them. New clothes in, old clothes out. Money in. The old purse is merely a container. She tosses aside an identity and chooses a new one. Her hair color is rinsed away. The vestiges of her old life are abandoned in a train station locker. She only keeps things for as long as they are useful.

     

  2. How does Hitchcock use Bernard Herrmann's score in this scene?

     

    The phrasing in the melody repeats itself and becomes faster and more insistent as Marnie casts off her old self. It follows a pattern of orchestral voices and takes on a dark tone when the money is dumped into the suitcase. It gets darker still when the new identity cards are revealed. It becomes triumphant when the original hair color is revealed and the pattern changes here and maintains when the suitcase is locked away. It is a little sad and nefarious.

     

  3. Did you see any variation in what Hitchcock is doing with his cameo in this film, and what do you think that variation means? 

     

    He glances at the camera, almost acknowledging the audience. He also could  be looking out for Marnie from the rear. This could acknowledge the artificiality of Marnie's life - it's a long con and the audience is in on it.

 

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Hi all I hope this makes sense. I’m running a low fever so I did what I could. Don’t expect my usual brilliance. ;)

 

. . .

 

2 How does Hitchcock use Bernard Herrmann's score in this scene?

 

 

I believe Herrmann’s score punctuates the changes we feel Marnie goes through in this scene. It begins with a five note repeating melody that sweeps into determination and action as Marnie enters her room. Then the music slowly becomes very soft and flowing before Herrmann softly adds touches of sadness as she begins to pack up and change her hair. Than a victorious sting as she throws her head back as a blonde. Then a subtle tension is added to the score as she leaves for the station - then it suddenly stops when she gets to her locker. We are allowed to hear the sounds of the station as she locks up her old life and throws the key away. . . .

 

 

I noticed that shift to ambient sounds in the station, too. Perhaps it was another way of Hitchcock telling the audience again, "Now is the time to pay attention. Now we are back to the real story." I have seen Marnie, but I would like see it again after reading so much about it in this course.

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