Skip to main content

The Film List Project #16: Vertigo

It's been a few weeks since I wrote about James Stewart or Alfred Hitchcock, so I thought I'd write about both today.

My post-wisdom teeth doppelgänger and my new favorite actor have made a masterpiece in Vertigo. It plays with your mind in your emotions in the best way possible, keeping you gripped through all 128 minutes. It kills me that it was a box office failure in its day.

Despite being a commercial failure, this film is considered one of the greatest Hitchcock films of all time. I think it may be my new favorite.

A lot of people who watch it now might comment on the fake backdrops used for the scenes where we look down from high places, but I love looking at these old painted backdrops. Even without today's special effects, the audience can still feel the fear that Scottie (James Stewart) feels when he looks down at the view.

My favorite thing about a Hitchcock film is the environment he creates. You're immersed in the story, and every little decision he's made as a director goes toward immersing the audience. I was afraid, excited, creeped out, and enraged at all the right moments while watching Vertigo. A Hitchcock film is an experience.

For me (get ready for a pun), the most instrumental part of creating the feeling of this film is the music. Bernard Herrmann wrote the score for this film and so many of my other favorites, and this one takes the cake. You can listen to the score of this film and feel every emotion you felt while watching it.

Food for thought: North by Northwest, which I wrote about a few weeks ago, starred Cary Grant because Vertigo was a box office failure. James Stewart wanted to play the lead in Hitchcock's next film, but Hitchcock blamed the failure on Stewart looking too old. Because of that, Hitchcock cast Grant in his next feature. Oddly enough, Grant is four years older than Stewart.

Because I feel so badly for Stewart (and this is my new favorite photo), I'll end the post with this:
Stars! They're just like us!

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Be Smart

It still shocks me when people tell me they no longer go to the movies, but even I was surprised that I went to see a movie twice in one week. Yes, I am no stranger to a repeat trip to the theatre, but Booksmart hit me hard. I very rarely see a new release that rockets to the top of my list of all time favorites. In fact, I don't think it's happened since I saw Whip It 10 years ago.

If you haven't yet heard about Booksmart, it's an original, funny, empathetic take on an old classic. Two best friends want to go to a party after four years of a solely academic high school career. What it does differently from movies like Superbad (which I also love, by the way) should and will change the genre forever.

The two leads (Kaitlyn Dever and Beanie Feldstein) not only land every joke and win you over immediately, but they also communicate the weird and wonderful world of female friendship through their performances in a way I've rarely seen. They don't compete, they sup…

Okay, Oprah: Or, a Pat on the Back and a Push Forward

I didn’t watch the Golden Globes this year. In fact, the closest I got to Oprah Winfrey was when a customer at the Starbucks I work in forgot we no longer sold her chai tea and ordered a “dirty Oprah” by mistake. Still, I was told about the speech. And I watched it. And I, like so many others, was moved by her words. 
It made me irritated, too. Here’s the thing: it’s incredible that Oprah stands with women who are oppressed, abused, assaulted, and silenced. Beyond incredible. She spoke with a characteristic eloquence that made people aware and gave people hope in a way so many of us need right now. However, we cannot deny that she had the opportunity to speak those words on such a public stage because she isOprah.
She’s one of the most powerful women in the world. I don’t think the irony is lost on anyone that the network that she owns is, well, OWN. We think Oprah, we think mogul, renaissance woman, icon, boss. The woman doesn’t need her last name anymore (or, the last five letters …

Purpose

It recently occurred to me that I haven't posted in a while. Well, REJOICE!!! I just saw Titanic 3D and now I have a lot of emotions. Just kidding. The movie was amazing, though. In fact, it got me thinking.

If you've been reading this blog for a while, you know that I want to be a screenwriter. If you haven't, I want to be a screenwriter. There, we learn something new everyday. When I tell people this, they often laugh. I understand why they do. It's a seemingly impossible goal. After a person is done with his or her laughing fit, I'm often asked why I want to do this.
Watching a movie like Titanic only strengthens my desire to do this. I've been a moviegoer all my life, but I'm different than what people think I should be. Instead of watching several movies once or twice and analyzing them, I tend to watch a handful of movies over and over again, studying them, figuring out what I like and don't like. I look at the few I connect with to see why I conn…