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A TCM Hitchcock Sunday


FlyBackTransformer
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Nothin' but Hitchcock. I always find The Wrong Man interesting to watch with Henry Fonda as a musician mistakenly pegged as a bandit and getting to see how the NYC police system operates jail-wise but the film goes awry torward the end with Vera Miles losing her cookies and needing institutionalization. I think Hitch shoulda had her hold on to her marbles a bit longer until Manny was acquited then the ending woulda been far more enjoyable.

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That sort of thing was "par for the course" back then, Fly. Just look at how in RANSOM, Donna Reed needs all that medical attention because she "went to pieces" when her son was kidnapped. Why, the "womenfolk" were SO delicate, they couldn't FUNCTION come a crisis.

 

That's why we couldn't have a woman president back then. Why, when them thar COMMIES make a threat, she'd be so flustered that she'd pee her pink little PANTIES, doncha know. Best if she don't worry her "purty little head" about IMPORTANT, MAN type thangs and just keep to the kids and cookin' and such.

 

Sepiatone

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>That's why we couldn't have a woman president back then. Why, when them thar COMMIES make a threat, she'd be so flustered that she'd pee her pink little PANTIES, doncha know. Best if she don't worry her "purty little head" about IMPORTANT, MAN type thangs and just keep to the kids and cookin' and such.

 

Hey Sepia, are you sure you posted this in the correct thread, 'cause I'm pretty sure it would've fit in MUCH better over in that "Giant"/"Feminist" one, if ya me! ;)

 

LOL

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>Are there any classic films in which the man went to pieces and the woman kept her cool?

 

Nothing immediately comes to my mind if you're talking about the male and female leads in a movie. But, what your question did have be thinking of was the supporting character Charles Drake played in "Winchester '73", and how when he's introduced into the story, he runs away and leaves poor ol' Shelley Winters to fend for herself against a group of attacking Indians.

 

(...yeah, yeah, I know...poor Indians...that VOICE of her's should've scared 'em away, huh!)

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Are there any classic films in which the man went to pieces and the woman kept her cool?

 

In keeping with the Hitchcock theme, how about Spellbound? I'm not sure Ingrid Berman's character completely keeps her cool, but Gregory Peck's character certainly goes to pieces.

 

Edited by: selimsa803 on Sep 8, 2013 4:29 PM

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FlyBack wrote:

 

>the film goes awry torward the end with Vera Miles losing her cookies >and needing institutionalization. I think Hitch shoulda had her hold on to >her marbles a bit longer until Manny was acquited then the ending >

>woulda been far more enjoyable.

 

Shirley one of the points of the movie is how this kind of injustice can profoundly affect innocent people, not only the accused but those close to him.

The police, the investigators, the "witnesses", were all WRONG. Yet they were absolutely convinced they were right, and as a result they ruined not only Mannie's life but his wife's.

If it had had a conventionally happy ending, everything roses again, it would not have been as powerful a film.

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>I think Hitch shoulda had her hold on to her marbles a bit longer until Manny was acquited then the ending woulda been far more enjoyable.

 

There was a lot of publicity, when this film was first released, about it being based on a true story. See this:

 

 

*While Manny is awaiting a second trial he is exonerated when the true robber is arrested holding up a grocery store. Manny visits Rose at the hospital to share the good news, but as the film closes she remains profoundly depressed; a textual epilogue explains that she recovered two years later.*

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Wrong_Man

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>FlyBackTransformer said: ..torward the end with Vera Miles losing her cookies and needing institutionalization. I think Hitch shoulda had her hold on to her marbles a bit longer until Manny was acquited then the ending woulda been far more enjoyable.

 

I see Vera first "losing her cookies" outside the apartment of the second dead witness about 75 min into the film. She has that small burst of uncontrolled laughter as she's come to the conclusion of hopelessness. Right after that, in the lawyer's office, she takes a nose dive. You can see her balling up and withdrawing from the situation. Nice acting.

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I think part of what *The Wrong Man* is about is that feeling of hopelessness, of powerlessness against "authorities" who have made up their minds. The feeling that nothing you can say or do will change the situation.

One of Hitchcock's "nightmares" was this idea of being falsely accused, yet unable to prove your innocence. It's a recurring theme in many of his films, and of course THE theme in *The Wrong Man*.

 

Vera's character feels this hopelessness very strongly, to the point where it affects her sanity, or at least, her mental health.

 

One of the things Hitch is trying to show in this film is how, once the wheels of "justice" start turning, there's an inexorable quality to them, and it is almost impossible to turn them back.

Even after Mannie has been absolved of the crime, much damage has been done.

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>Are there any classic films in which the man went to pieces and the woman kept her cool?

 

I think that was more common in films of the 1930s and wartime '40s:

 

In DISHONORED (1931), Marlene Dietrich faced a firing squad without flinching, while one of the squad members goes berserk:

 

 

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The main thing about THE WRONG MAN that bugs me is that NOBODY, not even Manny's lawyer, brought up one fact...

 

"Let me get this straight. You say that I ROBBED the insurance office, then RETURNED to ask for a LOAN?"

 

And wouldn't the LAWYER be doing all that research that Manny and his wife wound up doing?

 

Just sayin'...

 

Sepiatone

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I think part of what The Wrong Man is about is that feeling of hopelessness, of powerlessness against "authorities" who have made up their minds. The feeling that nothing you can say or do will change the situation.

One of Hitchcock's "nightmares" was this idea of being falsely accused, yet unable to prove your innocence.

 

Henry Fonda definitely had it bad in The Wrong Man, but you have to wonder what Robert Cummings must have felt like in Saboteur, when his entire fate rested in the hands of the bearded lady of a small town circus!

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