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allthumbs

31 Days Oversights-I Say Vertigo

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the most intriguing missing movie in this years 31 Days is (to me) Vertigo.

 

since this movie was just (last August) selected as the #1 movie of all-time in the Sight and Sound survey and has many who champion its big and subtle merits, i think 31 Days should have featured it instead of ignoring it. there are more than a few who are detractors because they find the plot murky, Jimmy Stewart out of character, or it's just plain boring. however, one way or another there's no fence sitting regarding Hitch's (supposed) masterpiece.

 

are there any other movies they should have shown?

 

btw, Vertigo received two Oscar nominations: Best Art/Set Decoration, & Best Sound. (a little on the thin side for the #1 Movie)

 

 

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I think that *Vertigo* is probably Hitch's best film. But, TCM has shown it several times, and Encore runs it constantly. So, I understand why it isn't part of 31 Days.

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> {quote:title=allthumbs wrote:}{quote}

> since this movie was just (last August) selected as the #1 movie of all-time in the Sight and Sound survey

 

That's because it appeared in more top ten lists than any other film. Theoretically, it could have been the 10th film listed in all those lists, but since it had the greatest frequency, it was ranked #1.

 

As for the film itself, the first time I saw it I was quite taken with it. After subsequent viewings, most of the film falls apart and is simply not believable in any sense.

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Vertigo is more inexpertly praised rather than overrated. As I like to approach it, it is definitely Hitchcock's best film, but it is not the best "Hitchcock" film. For that you can look to North By Northwest, The Birds, or one of his earlier bw films, according to your taste. Vertigo is not a "Hitchcock" film. It is a slowly paced film (no, not boring) that is character driven, with extensive analysis of people's faults, motivations, and preoccupations. The standard Hitchcock film is plot driven, which moves along at a nice pace, and the characters are constructed to suit it. In a standard Hitchcock film there is a MacGuffin around which all the action swirls, an item lacking in Vertigo.

 

Some people seeing the Hitchcock label on a film have certain expectations, which are disappointed by Vertigo, leading them to dislike the film. And some people simply don't care for this kind of film. But make no mistake, Vertigo is a masterwork, a wonderfully disturbing look into people's perverse obsessions, hang-ups, the dissolving of the boundary between hard reality and fantasy worlds, people's retreat into them, the domination of one person over another's identity, and the reshaping of it to their desires, the willingness for some to allow that to happen to them because of a desperate need for love, or emotional security. Of course, things so wildly unrealistic must lead to catastrophe.

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>As for the film itself, the first time I saw it I was quite taken with it. After subsequent viewings, most of the film falls apart and is simply not believable in any sense.

 

I think that was a film that was designed to be seen only once. A film designed for initial impact on the audience.

 

I remember seeing it in the theater and trying to pay close attention to all the little details while Scottie was following Madeleine around town, to the various places, while the mystery music played in the background.

 

We in the audience were being given false clues and led to believe a false nonsense story, and in the end we were given a trick and we were fooled just as Scottie had been fooled.

 

Watching the film over and over again reveals a lot of plot flaws and silly stuff.

 

For example, if Elster could get the real Madeleine up into the bell tower and throw her off and escape, all without being seen, then he never needed Scottie or Judy at all in the first place.

 

But, I watch it every time it is shown, because it is fun to watch. :)

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Last week and this week seems to be MODERN FILMS, which I don't like and don't watch, so I've been watching full-length old films from the 1930s on YouTube.

 

Today I saw Charlie Chan in England.

 

This morning I saw the rare Hitchcock film, SECRET AGENT (1936), with Madeleine Carroll.

 

Last night I saw SHE.

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Well, you got it from me, twice in one night. See the Blowup thread. In the future, I think I'll just wait for you to explain things, and maybe I can just agree, without having to compose anything myself... :D;)

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{stop:reference:c0-e7, initialize:reference:c0-e8, callback:reference:c0-e9, frequency:reference:c0-e10, currentlyExecuting:reference:c0-e11, registerCallback:reference:c0-e12, onTimerEvent:reference:c0-e13, timer:reference:c0-e14, execute:reference:c0-e15}

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Whoops, ignore that gibberish below. Just wanted to say VERTIGO is my favorite Hitchcok film. I like the analysis in this thread about why maybe it doesn't particularly resonate with some viewers. I thought it was necessary for Scottie to witness "Madeline" in an emotionally disturbed state so as to establish the plausibility of her suicide, but yeah, I guess it wasn't absolutely necessary for him to be at the bell tower, except that now you have an eye witness to this alleged suicide. But to me, VERTIGO is less about the twists of the plot than it is about the themes of devotion bordering on (and going over the border) of obsession. The relationships between Stewart and Novak and Stewart and Bel Geddes in the film are both deliciously twisted and sad. The fact that VERTIGO got only two Oscar nominations in categories that are usually deemed "minor" is some sign that maybe Oscar voters didn't know what to make of it, either. Several of Hitch's films from that era got multiple nominations.

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Well, I like Hitchcock, but I don't like *Vertigo* . Yes, I know what he was trying to do. Yes, I GET all the subtleties and psycological aspects. And yes, it IS well written, filmed, acted and a compelling story. I STILL don't like it.

 

 

But, as the station is called "TURNER Classic Movies" and NOT "Sepiatone Classic Movies", MY liking or disliking it is of no matter. I agree it SHOULD be shown, particularily in the "31 Days".

 

 

Sepiatone

 

 

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Well, there you go. You don't have to like a movie to recognize it's quality or importance. There are many important or well made movies I simply don't like, Last Year at Marienbad, for instance. I know it's a great film, but I never get past the first fifteen minutes of it. There are even great movies I like, but I don't watch them often. I consider Metropolis the greatest film ever made, yet I watch it less than once a year. On the other hand, there are films I watch a lot which I know are not much, but I like them, and I have fun watching them. There you go.

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By now the themes of obsessiveness, the nature of personal identity,

amour fou, etc. are a little bit threadbare they've been put forward so

often. Not that they aren't an important part of the movie, but they've

become rather obvious and facile. They do all take place against the

background of Elster's murder plot, and the one adds to the other and

makes a fine combination. I don't know if Vertigo is a masterpiece or

not, but it is a very interesting movie.

 

 

For about the fifth time, if Elster just threw his wife off the tower, he would

be an immediate suspect. He went through the whole charade with Madeleine

being followed around by Scotty to establish her suicidal tendencies, and

his plan worked like a charm. Why didn't he then bump off Madeleine? That

would have been another corpse to account for and if he was ever connected

with her that would have been bad news for Gavin. So he took the risk that in

a city of 750,000 people Jimmy wouldn't bump into the refitted Kim Novak.

The only flaw was that he was operating in a movie, not in real life.

 

 

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Elster could have paid her something to move to another city, to lessen further the risk that Scotty would bump into her. It's not like she'd have to give up a promising job, since she worked at the perfume counter at Magnin's. She could have gotten a job at the perfume counter at a Bullock's in LA.

 

Edited by: finance on Feb 20, 2013 5:56 PM

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NBNW is an MGM film and more accessible. Vertigo was Paramount, now owned by Universal. Not as easy to rent.....

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Allthumbs said...

 

 

The most intriguing missing movie in this years 31 Days is (to me) Vertigo.

 

Are there any other movies they should have shown?

 

 

===================

 

 

 

 

 

I find it hard to imagine them running four days of Oscar-related Columbia movies, and not including IT HAPPENED ONE NIGHT.

 

 

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Apparently the U.S. production code suits also wanted a less ambiguous

ending concerning the fate of Elster, but Hitchcock refused to place the

add on which seems to have been added in England and some other

European countries. It consisted of Midge listening to the radio news that

Elster is about to be apprehended in Europe. Scotty knocks at the door, she

turns the radio off, fixes him a drink, and they stare out the window in silence.

Hmmm. Maybe after a few more decades Scotty will get over Madeleine and

he and Midge can recieve their SS checks at the same address.

 

The Vertigo FAQ section on IMDb has a few interesting takes on different

topics, including some of those questionable plot points.

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