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Hitchcock's "Vertigo"...did it even really happen?


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I think "Vertigo" is Hitchcock's paean to the non-existence of a belief still being paramount if you refuse to deny it.


C'mon, Scottie was hanging on the edge of a rapidly being destroyed gutter when last we saw him.


The film is about what happens between when he looks down and sees the dead cop on the ground...and when he falls himself.


Being that Scottie is a passionless soul, with no real love affairs to think back of in his death throes or to reflect upon...he dreams about the elusive Madeleine, who does not exist, as he falls to his death.


Why Madeleine? Well, maybe Scottie spent his long, lonely nights reading Proust and that makes as much sense as Kane saying Rosebud in his last expiring breath.


Yep, the story in "Vertigo" reflects Hitchcock's own mortality and the fact that he himself was always dreaming of blonde women who would never give him a tumble. Alma, the soul...allowed Hitchcock to make these films to vent his frustrations and "Vertigo" is the crowning achievement to this ode to onanism.


Prove me wrong and we can talk...

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That damn Hitchcock , leaving all of these loose ends ;) The best one for me is how Kim goes into the old apartment house (Valdez home) up the stairs and into the room, then when Stewart enters and talks to the landlady, Kim and her car magically disappear. And the old lady never saw a thing, unless she was in on the whole thing. Maybe she was another girlfriend of Elster's ?

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Hey! mrroberts! I think I might have finally figured all this stuff out! :)


Dietrichson was never *ON* that train!!




No, no, wait a minute.... wait a minute.... wrong movie. Ah, that's it! That's the big clue! NONE of this stuff ever really happened to Kim and Stewart....because.... because THIS IS A MOVIE!! :)

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.......in a pinch. Elster is one of my favorite Sir Alfred villains.

Understated, low-key, almost bland. None of that old look at

how evil and weird I am. He just got the job done, and also,

unlike most bad guys from that era, he got away with it.


I've always seen Vertigo as Hitchcock's take, mostly positive, on the

Eisenhower administration. Yes, Hitchcock never is very political in

his films, but this is an exception. Ike is sort of a thinner, equally

bald, Hitch. Notice the two M's--Madeleine and Midge. Now add a

third M, Mamie. An obvious reference to the three branches of the

U.S. government. The ubiquitous grey dress suit, the same color as

the Republican elephant. All those references to the past of old

S.F. A nod to the old Mr. Republican, Robert Taft, whom Ike beat

out for his party's nomination. The various trips up and down the

Cali coast, a symbol of Ike's Interstate Highway system. And finally,

the high tower, a bow to Eisenhower's solidly high electoral wins.

Yes, it's all there, for those who have the eyes to see it.

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Well, an amazing array of fabulous interpretations. Thanks to all.


I love the Mamie Eisenhower connection, as I've always dug the McCarthy connection to "Invasion of the Body Snatchers".


As for Dietrichson not being on the train, what's more questionable is who the heck is B.Traven and why was he hiding in South America under an assumed name after writing TOTSM?


I don't really like to pick films apart and say "Oh this is impossible and Kong couldn't have been brought back to civilization because he was bigger than the boat" as suspension of belief is always fun, but oftimes one wonders if there is a hidden interpretation in the director or writer's mind, a bit like Mother Goose rhymes being politically inspired heresy.


I think if Scottie did fall on that poor policeman, he must have made mincemeat out of him...haha!


Edited by: CaveGirl on Sep 12, 2013 2:45 PM

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The clincher is that the Republican convention in 1956 was held in

......San Francisco, the convention that nominated Ike for a second

term. Of course John C. Fremont, the first Republican candidate

for president, is identified with California, and was known as the Pathfinder, just as Scottie must be a pathfinder, not in the outside

world, but in his own troubled mind. The scene in the forest with the huge

Redwoods is a gimme reference to the short-lived Free Soil Party, which

was folded into the Republican Party. Beneath the subtext lies the sub

subtext. And if I'm lying, I'm dyi......

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OMG, John.


This explains everything in "Vertigo".


You've covered the Republican connection and all one need do to extend the subtext that Hitch obviously was using is remember the Dem's man, Adlai Stevenson who once said:


"A hypocrite is the kind of man who would cut down a redwood tree, then mount the stump and make a speech for conservation.


It's so clear now...Scottie, a redwood tree, mounting...ahem.


Case closed!

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I tried to stop just short of a unified field theory. Since there were already

a lot of moving GOP parts, Adlai would have been difficult to squeeze in.

Egghead, hole in the sole. Maybe a connection with Midge as a two-time

loser. And of course Ike's VP was from Cali, but I don't want to go there.

Nix on that.

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As I already mentioned, Vertigo is atypical in the fact that it does

have a political sub subtext, as Hitchcock usually kept away from

political subjects. Now, I have heard bubbling up the theory of some

films scholars that Rear Window is actually an allegorical representa-

tion of the asasination of Abraham Lincoln, but this is still developing,

so it's best to wait and see what comes of it.


Funny coincidence. Before I went to bed last night I watched just the

intro to I Confess and Madeleine Stowe thought it was partly an analogy for McCarthyism-guilt by association, false accusations, etc. Seems like a bit of a stretch to me, but she is certainly entitled to that interpretation.


Part of our short, semi-national nighmare is over now that the correct

times are given for each thread and no one has to hunt for when a

post was actually made. About time.

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