Friday, 24 February 2012

Review of Vertigo

 Figure One - Poster

Vertigo is a 1958 psychological thriller film directed by Alfred Hitchcock, It is the story of a retired police detective suffering from acrophobia who is hired as a private investigator to follow the wife of an acquaintance to uncover the mystery of her peculiar behaviour.

·          Release: 1954
·         Director: Alfred Hitchcock
·        Genre: Thriller 

Vertigo starts off with a close up shot females face, which show obsession with the female, then the camera pans to her lips which maybe stand for lust and then to the eyes for love, which are all the emotions Scottie has for Madeleine.  

After the scene with the females close up shoot,  Vertigo hits the ground running, with two police men chasing a guy on the roof tops, then Scottie doesn’t clear the jump and his partner ends up falling off after this scene the film’s pace slows down, what keeps the film interesting is how Scottie deals with his Vertigo. 

 Figure Two - Jeff 

One of the most interesting things in Vertigo is James Stewarts character slowly transform from a good retired police officer to this bad obsessive man who doesn’t care about Judy feelings at all because all he wants is the woman he fell in love with. Which makes one think, did the obsession with Madeleine was so much he couldn’t even tell it was her even though all what had change in her appearance was her colour. 

“You watch this guy going slowly over the brink and realize, good grief, this is Jimmy Stewart.” (Clark 2000)

Going back to obsession, Lust and love are strong themes throughout the film, Scottie falls in love with Madeleine, and after she jumps from the church, the love for her dies away but then he bumps into Judy and the lust begins for her due to her appearance reminding him of Madeleine, then the obsession kicks in, he starts making her change her appearance, till the audience find out that she is in fact the woman he fell in love with.  

“A haunting meditation on sexual politics, romantic love, and obsession, Vertigo is one of the greatest surreal movies ever made.” (Levy 2011)

 Figure Three - Wax Model

The look of is generally artificial, weather it was the performance from Kim Novak or when she was playing as Madeleine, there was a moment in the film where she paused and she looked a wax figure. 

“Justifying Vertigo's poor initial performance, it is a film that requires distance, as well as the completion of Hitchcock's career. It is a moment of acknowledgment in the final, retrospective establishment of the director's frequent theme.” (Taylor 2003)



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