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PB's Hitchcockian Adventure - Vertigo

 
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PB's Hitchcockian Adventure - Vertigo - 29/1/2009 4:19:42 PM   
PB~!


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PB's Hitchcockian Adventure!



Well I figured it was time to try and have a go at another thread.  Hopefully this one will last longer than my top 100.  Having been given the Hitchcock boxset for Christmas, what better to do than to work my way through them all, and share my thoughts with you.  I hope to get atleast a couple up a week and as always would really appreciate your thoughts and comments.  I'll be doing this in no particular order, and it won't be a complete list.  I've only seen a few Hitchcock films so most of these will be first watches.  In general they will conatin Spoilers but my verdict and the plot synopsis I will steal from Empire will be spoiler free.  Enjoy!


< Message edited by PB~! -- 11/3/2009 8:08:30 PM >


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RE: PB's Hitchcockian Adventure - 29/1/2009 4:24:22 PM   
PB~!


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Rope
(1948)


Starring: James Stewart, John Dall and Farley Granger

Empire Plot Synopsis:  Shaw Brandon and his roommate Phillip strangle their Harvard undergraduate friend, David, and hide his body in a trunk in the middle of their apartment. However, during the course of a single evening, their crime is eventually uncovered by their old, war-wounded prep school teacher, Rupert Cadell.

There are two things often mentioned when people talk about Rope that donít really sit too well with me.  The first is that there is a complete air of inevitability and therefore a lack of suspense.  People have claimed that because the film begins with the murder that the rest of the film tries to discover, that there is no suspense as we know what is going to happen.  I just donít buy this one bit.  TO me, the best suspense is whenever we know what is going to happen, but we canít bear to look and I think that this is the case in Rope. We know that Stewartís Rupert is going to work out that Brandon and Philip have murdered David, and we know that the climax of the film will be a confrontation about this.  However, wondering how itís going to happen, waiting to see when they get got, is just as suspenseful in my opinion as if we were never sure of whether or not they had committed the crime.  Hitchcock is known as the master of suspense, and we get that in buckets here.  Every time Rupert getís closer to figuring it out, I was on the edge of my seat, waiting to see if he was finally going to nail it.  The way Hitchcock focused on the trunk at key points was so exciting because we knew exactly what was in it and because we longed to see what would happen if it was discovered.  The shot of the maid looking to clear the books into the trunk is so full of suspense because we know for sure whatís in there.
 
The second thing that bothers me is the amount people talk about the homosexual undertones of the film.  Whilst I cannot deny that they are there, I do not believe they are overly important nor are they crucial in enjoying the film.  Iíve read people get uptight because Stewart didnít play his character gay, becuse Hitchcock wanted to clean it up for Hollywood and only slightly hint at it, and Iíve heard people claim that the homosexual undertones are the whole point of the film.  My guess is that Philip and Brandon are certainly homosexual, Rupert isnít (even if he was in the play, here I donít think he is) but overall it doesnít matter.  I guess you could argue that when Brandon is talking about the right to murder, he only gives that right to himself, Philip and Rupert because of their sexual preferences but I disagree and believe it is their supposed intellectual and cultural superiority.
 
To me their cultural and intellectual superiority is what the issue here is really.  What exactly makes one person better than the other?  What is intellectual superiority?  Although he initially seems to go along with this line of thinking, and probably introduced the boys to Nietzscheís ĎSupermaní philosophy, Rupertís realisation in the final moments that this is all preposterous is the most important part of the film.  Stewartís character realises the real value of human life, and the equality of human beings.  He also realises just how detrimental his frivolous attitude towards murder, particularly in front of his pupils, really is.  He probably thought Nietzscheís philosophy sounded ok, and heíd share it, but without truely thinking of the consequences.  What he realises that there is no such thing as a Superman and that all human beings are made equal.  He has to ensure that Philip and Brandon realise this and get the punishment they deserve.
 
My Verdict:  This isnít a masterpiece, but it is a classic.  It is full of suspense and great acting.  Hitchcock is inventive here as usual, shooting the film in ten eight minute shots, all ending and beginning on something like a close-up of a back, making the film feel not only like one continual shot, but like a play.  This film works because you know the outcome and you canít wait to get there, enjoying the suspense on the way.
8/10   *****
 
 

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RE: PB's Hitchcockian Adventure - 29/1/2009 4:49:02 PM   
swordsandsandals


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Great idea! I was thinking of doing exactly the same thing. But then I didn't. I'll try and keep up with some of these, but so far the only one I've seen is Rear Window.

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RE: PB's Hitchcockian Adventure - 29/1/2009 5:43:55 PM   
PB~!


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Well the more the merrier.  Feel free to post reviews if you want buddy.

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RE: PB's Hitchcockian Adventure - 29/1/2009 7:53:35 PM   
jamesbondguy


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Nice idea for a thread. (Suprised no-one else has done it yet, really.) But, for some reason, I've never been paticularly fond of Rope. It's well-written, well-acted, but it just doesn't grab me or pull me along in the way that other Hitchcock films do. I can admire the experiment, and I do actually think it works rather well, but I can't get a grip on the film. I guess the intention could have been to alienate the audience, despite the fact I doubt Hitchcock would even consider doing something like that to any great extent. The film could have been more interesting had I read more Nietzsche, though, as to see whether the two killer's interpretation of it is twisted, and the film is really about the dangers of misunderstanding ideas, or is an accurate reflection of his philosophy (which I doubt.) Anyway, looking forward to the rest of this thread, paticularly the review of Rear 'greatest Hollywood film ever' Window.

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RE: PB's Hitchcockian Adventure - 29/1/2009 11:17:13 PM   
PB~!


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Thanks for the comments.  I only have a brief understanding of Nietzsche's philosophy myself, from A Level RE but I don't think they were too far wrong.  Of course some expert will come in now and correct me.   He certainly believed that the better men, the 'supermen' will naturally outlive the weaker men, but perhaps not through murder. 

Who knows?  I realy enjoyed it anyway.  Part of that is probably down to Stewart's presence as I think he is quickly becoming my favourite actor.

Rear Window is one of the few Hitchcock films I have seen before this thread and I want to make sure I wait and do it right.  I love it. 


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RE: PB's Hitchcockian Adventure - 30/1/2009 12:16:39 AM   
Deviation


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I like Rope, I really do. It might be as good as The Birds, Rear Window or his masterpiece Vertigo, but it is a daring, original  film and it never lets go through its running time. And I agree with jamesbondguy(<shudder>) it's not about agaisnt the Superhuman theory being wrong, but completely misunderstood, by all three of the protagonists. Whether the theory is wrong or not is not really important, but the intepratations of it certainly are.



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RE: PB's Hitchcockian Adventure - 30/1/2009 6:11:07 AM   
Pigeon Army


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I've seen Rear Window and Vertigo only, but nearly picked up Rope the other day at the library (the latest Lau/Fai Mak film took its place). I love Rear Window immensely, from the whipsmart dialogue to Grace Kelly to the great set design to Grace Kelly to James Stewart's wonderful performance to that marvellous climax to Grace Kelly... As for Vertigo, it was also excellent and highly unpredictable, but it's not as good as Rear Window. Plus, no Grace Kelly.



Awwwwwwwwwww.


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She's supposed to be 13! I'd want her to be very attractive though


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RE: PB's Hitchcockian Adventure - 30/1/2009 9:07:56 AM   
doncopey1


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PB according to many resources Stewart's character in the film was gay to which the screenwriter an excellent screenwriter for that matter confirmed, he whilst he thought Stewart gave an okay performance didn't think he was particularly right for the part he thought James Mason would have been perfect to which I totally agree. Hitchcock originally wanted Cary Grant for Stewarts part and Monty Clift for Granger's part which would have been interesting. Personally I think Stewart does a solid job he doesn't lean into the performance and there are enough gay tendencies from his character to confirm his sexuality. I think you may have missed the point with his character as it's implied that Stewart is the primary influnece on the two leads not only in their philsophy of the murder but in their sexuality and its set up excellently. Me I would have preferred to see James Mason but what you going to do.

I also watched on a documentary and this is one of the few times i would disagree with Hitchcocks vision...the screenwriter originally wrote that we wouldn't see the murder and that through the film it would be suggestive and the tension would heightened by the fact whether they'd actually killed someone or hadn't they to which I think Hitchcock messed up there. What do you's think?

Overall its a solid experimental film with some nice tracking shots and long takes as he purposfully went for a stagey outlook. The use of colour too if wonderfully effective as well. The script is well written packed with meaning, humour and tension. The homosexual undertones too gives it more interest and says alot about society at the time even though nothing about sexuality is mentioned its portrayed very well. Its an enjoyable little thriller if not spectacular
(3.5).

Oh and Hitch's masterpiece is without doubt Vertigo



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RE: PB's Hitchcockian Adventure - 30/1/2009 9:09:18 AM   
doncopey1


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Pigeon Army

I've seen Rear Window and Vertigo only, but nearly picked up Rope the other day at the library (the latest Lau/Fai Mak film took its place). I love Rear Window immensely, from the whipsmart dialogue to Grace Kelly to the great set design to Grace Kelly to James Stewart's wonderful performance to that marvellous climax to Grace Kelly... As for Vertigo, it was also excellent and highly unpredictable, but it's not as good as Rear Window. Plus, no Grace Kelly.



Awwwwwwwwwww.



ye its better than Rear Window and Novak is better than Kelly who isn't anything special


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RE: PB's Hitchcockian Adventure - 30/1/2009 9:56:18 AM   
PB~!


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quote:

ORIGINAL: doncopey1

I also watched on a documentary and this is one of the few times i would disagree with Hitchcocks vision...the screenwriter originally wrote that we wouldn't see the murder and that through the film it would be suggestive and the tension would heightened by the fact whether they'd actually killed someone or hadn't they to which I think Hitchcock messed up there. What do you's think?



I saw the screenwriter talking about this as well and I disagree.  My thought was that knowing that they had done it, and seeing them get caught was the exciting bit.  It could have worked both ways, but I side with Hitch and on this one I think.  Sometimes I think whenever you know what's going to happen, the tension leading to that point is far greater than leading to a surprise.  I thought the screenwriter sounded very bitter that Hitchcock took it in a different direction, and that's why he was so critical.


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RE: PB's Hitchcockian Adventure - 30/1/2009 10:08:40 AM   
elab49


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quote:

ORIGINAL: doncopey1

ye its better than Rear Window and Novak is better than Kelly who isn't anything special



If you go with the view that neither was particularly great shakes in terms of acting, Novak becomes one of the least of the problems in Vertigo. You also have to address Stewart.

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Deviation] LIKE AMERICA'S SWEETHEARTS TOO. IT MADE ME LAUGH A LOT AND THOUGHT IT WAS WITTY. ALSO I FEEL SLOWLY DYING INSIDE. I KEEP AGREEING WITH ELAB.


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RE: PB's Hitchcockian Adventure - 30/1/2009 12:03:30 PM   
Pigeon Army


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quote:

ORIGINAL: elab49

quote:

ORIGINAL: doncopey1

ye its better than Rear Window and Novak is better than Kelly who isn't anything special



If you go with the view that neither was particularly great shakes in terms of acting, Novak becomes one of the least of the problems in Vertigo. You also have to address Stewart.


I'm sorry, Grace Kelly and Kim Novak are actresses? I just thought they were there to look at.




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She's supposed to be 13! I'd want her to be very attractive though


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Stop being mean to Deviation

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RE: PB's Hitchcockian Adventure - 30/1/2009 1:04:41 PM   
elab49


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Pigeon Army

quote:

ORIGINAL: elab49

quote:

ORIGINAL: doncopey1

ye its better than Rear Window and Novak is better than Kelly who isn't anything special



If you go with the view that neither was particularly great shakes in terms of acting, Novak becomes one of the least of the problems in Vertigo. You also have to address Stewart.


I'm sorry, Grace Kelly and Kim Novak are actresses? I just thought they were there to look at.





Pretty much - talent wasn't apparently required.

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Deviation] LIKE AMERICA'S SWEETHEARTS TOO. IT MADE ME LAUGH A LOT AND THOUGHT IT WAS WITTY. ALSO I FEEL SLOWLY DYING INSIDE. I KEEP AGREEING WITH ELAB.


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RE: PB's Hitchcockian Adventure - 31/1/2009 7:32:26 AM   
doncopey1


Posts: 4996
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quote:

ORIGINAL: elab49

quote:

ORIGINAL: doncopey1

ye its better than Rear Window and Novak is better than Kelly who isn't anything special



If you go with the view that neither was particularly great shakes in terms of acting, Novak becomes one of the least of the problems in Vertigo. You also have to address Stewart.


Ha a wreckless comment Novak's turn is superb particularly when she has to play the regular gal and im not sure whether your criticsing Stewart's greatest performance (Anatomy of a Murder aside)? Grace Kelly in Rear Window is merely playing herself not that she was bad but it hardly stretched her. So to reaffirm my comment yours is dung.


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RE: PB's Hitchcockian Adventure - 31/1/2009 10:45:06 AM   
elab49


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Well, if we're doing it in the manner of a grown-up discussion.

Novak is a poor actress - she has neither the range nor the ability for the role here. Hitchcock's obsession with a certain type of blonde was fine enough in most roles where little was asked of them other than they be what Hitchcock thought of them - here more is demanded. He should have tried an actual actress for once.

Stewart? An excellent actor as well as a star, I do agree. But he seems as uncomfortable in this role as he did with Rope - perhaps he didn't trust Hitchcock to go to this extreme of character? He allowed Mann and Preminger to pull him to harsher extremes and fit them like gloves - but in what is possibly Hitchcock's most overwrought main film, Stewart just isn't there.

I can see why all the fancy stuff appeals to a certain type of critic when it comes to Vertigo, but it stands for me as one of Hitchcock's failures.


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Deviation] LIKE AMERICA'S SWEETHEARTS TOO. IT MADE ME LAUGH A LOT AND THOUGHT IT WAS WITTY. ALSO I FEEL SLOWLY DYING INSIDE. I KEEP AGREEING WITH ELAB.


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RE: PB's Hitchcockian Adventure - 31/1/2009 1:51:11 PM   
PB~!


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Shadow of a Doubt
1943



Empire Plot Synopsis:  Charlie adores her Uncle, whom she's named after, but on his latest visit she begins to suspect he may be a serial killer Ė and her knowledge could make her the next victim.

Certificate PG
Cast
Teresa Wright
Joseph Cotton
Macdonald Carey
Patricia Colllinge


Screenwriters
Thornton Wilder
Sally Benson
Alma Reville


Running Time
108 minutes


My favourite aspect of Shadow of a Doubt is the effect Uncle Charlie has on the cosy town of Santa Rosa.  Santa Rosa is idyllic, quiet, but most importantly innocent.  Uncle Charlie's arrival in Santa Rosa, steals this innocence, not just from the town, but from young Charlie as well.  Hitchcock makes this crystal clear as soon as Uncle Charlie arrives into town.  The younger brother, representing innocence and naivety is standing waiting for the train.  The train rolls into town, signifying Uncle Charlie's arrival, and casts the young boy in a dark shadow.  Uncle Charlie is the most exciting thing to happen to the town in a long time and everyone in the town automatically takes to him.   Of course he hides a much darker side to his character, and if this were to come out it would ruin his family and the mood of the whole town.

Of course, not only does Uncle Charlie threaten to take away the innocence of Santa Rosa, but he succeeds in taking away the innocence of Young Charlie.  At the beginning of the movie, Young Charlie is so innocent and naive and longs for something or someone to shake her 'normal' life up.  I guess this would be a good time to mention be careful what you wish for.  The very man who she wants to come and bring some excitement arrives, but instead of bringing excitement to her, he brings reality.  It is Charlie of course who realises that her Uncle is a murderer, and then proceeds to lose her trust in him and her respect for him.  She has to face reality fast in order to deal with the reality of this horrible situation she's in.

One of the reasons I think Shadow of a Doubt works so well is the strength of its characters.  Practically all of the characters are drawn out exquisitely and richly, with perhaps only Robert lacking.  You care about everyone from the Mother to Anne, to Herb.  You care about what would happen to them if the truth about Uncle Charlie comes out and how they would react.  Also because they area an 'average family' you can identify with most of the characters if not from your own family then from a family you know.

Ultimately however the biggest attribute towards this film's success is the fact that Hitchcock is the master of suspense.  Nobody can do it quite like the master and Shadow of a Doubt is a great example of this.  Watching you are so caught up in what is happening and what is going to happen that you completely forget you're watching a movie.  As Young Charlie realises more and more exactly who her Uncle really is and what he is capable of, you are genuinely concerned for her and about what he might do to her.  The best films, for me, are whenever the film finishes and you don't even realise that enough time had passed for it to be over, this happens with this film because you're grabbed from the get-go and there's never a dull moment.

Verdict:  A real classic.  From the great acting to the fantastic setting this film has everything going for it.  The best quality it has however is the man behind the camera.  Expertly made and put together, this is a masterpiece. 10/10




< Message edited by PB~! -- 3/2/2009 12:29:56 AM >


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RE: PB's Hitchcockian Adventure - 31/1/2009 2:42:45 PM   
elab49


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Obviously I'll be agreeing as this is my favourite

I saw a discussion on this recently that brought up a point often mentioned - someone again suggesting it could be improved with an element of ambiguity over whether Uncle Charlie was a killer or not. But that really does miss the point - Hitchcock's basic argument about us knowing about the bomb under the table. Takes the way you view the film in so many different ways. You focus more on what Charlie's (senior) impact is rather than wasting time on a mystery that isn't and the film is clearly the better for it.

I also love the little noir section - the town at night, not quite the ideal view of the town that life lived in the little house Charlie grew up in. Uncle Charlie didn't bring corruption there all be himself.

< Message edited by elab49 -- 31/1/2009 7:15:11 PM >


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Deviation] LIKE AMERICA'S SWEETHEARTS TOO. IT MADE ME LAUGH A LOT AND THOUGHT IT WAS WITTY. ALSO I FEEL SLOWLY DYING INSIDE. I KEEP AGREEING WITH ELAB.


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RE: PB's Hitchcockian Adventure - 31/1/2009 7:04:36 PM   
PB~!


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Totally agree. The best suspense is when you know exactly what is going to happen, but can't bear to wait for it to happen.  Of all the Hitchcock I've seen, so far this is my favourite as well, but I won't tell you what else I've seen.

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RE: PB's Hitchcockian Adventure - 31/1/2009 8:37:06 PM   
doncopey1


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quote:

ORIGINAL: elab49

Well, if we're doing it in the manner of a grown-up discussion.

Novak is a poor actress - she has neither the range nor the ability for the role here. Hitchcock's obsession with a certain type of blonde was fine enough in most roles where little was asked of them other than they be what Hitchcock thought of them - here more is demanded. He should have tried an actual actress for once.

Stewart? An excellent actor as well as a star, I do agree. But he seems as uncomfortable in this role as he did with Rope - perhaps he didn't trust Hitchcock to go to this extreme of character? He allowed Mann and Preminger to pull him to harsher extremes and fit them like gloves - but in what is possibly Hitchcock's most overwrought main film, Stewart just isn't there.

I can see why all the fancy stuff appeals to a certain type of critic when it comes to Vertigo, but it stands for me as one of Hitchcock's failures.



Novak is far from a poor actress she was exceptional in Picnic and Pal Joey off the top of my head and pretty solid in the Man With the Golden Arm and to be fair shes one of the more respected Hitchcock actresses. At first she appeared to be the conventional Hitchcock blonde: pretty, icy, upper class persona which we cant really relate even on that note she nailed it with fine conviction as opposed the likes of Hendrin and Kelly even the likes of Bergman and Marie Saint in their excellent collaborations with Hitch. But the turn as Michael Caine would dub is when she plays the regular joe and on first viewing I couldn't distinct between the two and her sudden descent into madness was wonderfully timed.

On Stewart again a laughable comment, again like Novak its a character of two havles at first when we see him walk into Elster's office he is packed with the usual wit and charm we have come to love from good old Jimmy. But when the turn in the plot occurs his 'uncomfortableness' is essential, his state of mind is completely devoid of any emotional. When he sits there upright in his chair in the doctors office that the type of uncomfortableness we want to see. Hence where Anthony Hopkins derived his famous entrance into Silence of the Lambs. No one pulled him harder here than Hitchcock to take all those Stewart stereotypes and throw them out of the window or a bell tower. Ive never seen a most perfect or uncliche decline of human emotion and as you say you can see why its fancies appeal to all the critics ...end of topic.

Next Shadow of a Doubt, sensational film with perhaps Hitchcock's most interesting lead protagonist. Wonderfully tense, at times charming and a well written script with a superb finale.


< Message edited by doncopey1 -- 31/1/2009 10:08:25 PM >


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RE: PB's Hitchcockian Adventure - 31/1/2009 10:00:35 PM   
Pigeon Army


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quote:

ORIGINAL: doncopey1

quote:

ORIGINAL: elab49

Well, if we're doing it in the manner of a grown-up discussion.

Novak is a poor actress - she has neither the range nor the ability for the role here. Hitchcock's obsession with a certain type of blonde was fine enough in most roles where little was asked of them other than they be what Hitchcock thought of them - here more is demanded. He should have tried an actual actress for once.

Stewart? An excellent actor as well as a star, I do agree. But he seems as uncomfortable in this role as he did with Rope - perhaps he didn't trust Hitchcock to go to this extreme of character? He allowed Mann and Preminger to pull him to harsher extremes and fit them like gloves - but in what is possibly Hitchcock's most overwrought main film, Stewart just isn't there.

I can see why all the fancy stuff appeals to a certain type of critic when it comes to Vertigo, but it stands for me as one of Hitchcock's failures.



Novak is far from a poor actress she was exceptional in Picnic and Pal Joey off the top of my head and pretty solid in the Man With the Golden Arm and to be fair shes one of the more respected Hitchcock actresses. At first she appeared to be the conventional Hitchcock blonde: pretty, icy, upper class persona which we cant really relate even on that note she nailed it with fine conviction as opposed the likes of Hendrin and Kelly even the likes of Bergman and Marie Saint in their excellent collaborations with Hitch. But the turn as Michael Caine would dub is when she plays the regular joe and on first viewing I couldn't distinct between the two and her sudden descent into madness was wonderfully timed.

On Stewart again a laughable comment, again like Novak its a character of two havles at first when we see him walk into Elster's office he is packed with the usual wit and charm we have come to love from good old Jimmy. But when the turn in the plot occurs his 'uncomfortableness' is essential his state of mind is completely devoid of any emotional. When he sits there upright in his chair in the doctors office that the type of uncomfortableness we want to see. Hence where Anthony Hopkins derived his famous entrance into Silence of the Lambs. No one pulled him harder here than Hitchcock to take all those Stewart stereotypes and throw them out of the window or a bell tower. Ive never seen a most perfect or uncliche decline of human emotion and as you say you can see why its fancies appeal to all the critics ...end of topic.



Woah, easy on the punctuation there, buddy. Don't go using those full stops and commas everywhere.

Weighing in on the debate from what I saw in Vertigo, I'm going to have to say Novak actually impressed me, mainly because SPOILER I honestly couldn't tell the difference between her two incarnations and when the big twist came, I was genuinely surprised, and that's as much a testament to her acting as it is to her make-up. However, Grace Kelly is far more attractive. As for Stewart, he was better in the amazing Rear Window, but was still on fine form in Vertigo, even if I didn't entirely buy him during the short time he was in the psychiatric hospital (partly because Hitchcock handles that part so badly - he's in, he's out next scene!).


_____________________________

quote:

ORIGINAL: Rinc
She's supposed to be 13! I'd want her to be very attractive though


quote:

ORIGINAL: MonsterCat
quote:

ORIGINAL: Pigeon Army
Stop being mean to Deviation

No.

(in reply to doncopey1)
Post #: 21
RE: PB's Hitchcockian Adventure - 31/1/2009 10:06:24 PM   
doncopey1


Posts: 4996
Joined: 29/11/2005
From: Liverpool: Age 25
quote:

ORIGINAL: Pigeon Army

quote:

ORIGINAL: doncopey1

quote:

ORIGINAL: elab49

Well, if we're doing it in the manner of a grown-up discussion.

Novak is a poor actress - she has neither the range nor the ability for the role here. Hitchcock's obsession with a certain type of blonde was fine enough in most roles where little was asked of them other than they be what Hitchcock thought of them - here more is demanded. He should have tried an actual actress for once.

Stewart? An excellent actor as well as a star, I do agree. But he seems as uncomfortable in this role as he did with Rope - perhaps he didn't trust Hitchcock to go to this extreme of character? He allowed Mann and Preminger to pull him to harsher extremes and fit them like gloves - but in what is possibly Hitchcock's most overwrought main film, Stewart just isn't there.

I can see why all the fancy stuff appeals to a certain type of critic when it comes to Vertigo, but it stands for me as one of Hitchcock's failures.



Novak is far from a poor actress she was exceptional in Picnic and Pal Joey off the top of my head and pretty solid in the Man With the Golden Arm and to be fair shes one of the more respected Hitchcock actresses. At first she appeared to be the conventional Hitchcock blonde: pretty, icy, upper class persona which we cant really relate even on that note she nailed it with fine conviction as opposed the likes of Hendrin and Kelly even the likes of Bergman and Marie Saint in their excellent collaborations with Hitch. But the turn as Michael Caine would dub is when she plays the regular joe and on first viewing I couldn't distinct between the two and her sudden descent into madness was wonderfully timed.

On Stewart again a laughable comment, again like Novak its a character of two havles at first when we see him walk into Elster's office he is packed with the usual wit and charm we have come to love from good old Jimmy. But when the turn in the plot occurs his 'uncomfortableness' is essential his state of mind is completely devoid of any emotional. When he sits there upright in his chair in the doctors office that the type of uncomfortableness we want to see. Hence where Anthony Hopkins derived his famous entrance into Silence of the Lambs. No one pulled him harder here than Hitchcock to take all those Stewart stereotypes and throw them out of the window or a bell tower. Ive never seen a most perfect or uncliche decline of human emotion and as you say you can see why its fancies appeal to all the critics ...end of topic.



Woah, easy on the punctuation there, buddy. Don't go using those full stops and commas everywhere.

Weighing in on the debate from what I saw in Vertigo, I'm going to have to say Novak actually impressed me, mainly because SPOILER I honestly couldn't tell the difference between her two incarnations and when the big twist came, I was genuinely surprised, and that's as much a testament to her acting as it is to her make-up. However, Grace Kelly is far more attractive. As for Stewart, he was better in the amazing Rear Window, but was still on fine form in Vertigo, even if I didn't entirely buy him during the short time he was in the psychiatric hospital (partly because Hitchcock handles that part so badly - he's in, he's out next scene!).



Yeah I have a habit of doing that when i ramble apologies... (period)


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Post #: 22
RE: PB's Hitchcockian Adventure - 2/2/2009 2:02:00 PM   
PB~!


Posts: 804
Joined: 4/1/2008
Saboteur
1942



Certificate PG


Cast
Priscilla Lane
Robert Cummings
Otto Kruger
Alan Baxter


Screenwriters
Alfred Hitchcock
Peter Viertel
Joan Harrison
Dorothy Parker


Running Time
108 minutes

Empire Plot Synopsis: Engineer Barry Kane is falsely accused of an arson attack a Californian aircraft factory that was committed by Frank Fry on behalf of Fifth Columnist, Charles Tobin. But, as Kane seeks to track down the perpetrators, reluctant accomplice Patricia Martin is far from convinced of his innocence.


Every time I watch one of these films, I keep waiting for disappointment.  Iíve been purposefully leaving the famous classics for the end of my adventure so that I can end on a high.  It seems however that this idea is now well and truly redundant, as I have yet to face disappointment.  Saboteur, whilst far from perfect, is a fantastically fun adrenaline ride, which captured my attention and imagination from start to finish.
There is no doubting this filmís flaws.  The acting is good, but never great, a testament to the fact that Hitch couldnít get the cast he wanted.  Also, although I love turning off my logic for films, this is a very hard task with Saboteur.  Itís great fun watching Barry get out of all of these situations, but they often leave you scratching your head.  Others may argue that the patriotism is over the top; however this doesnít bother me, especially considering its wartime release.  So this is far from a masterpiece, but yet it is still more imaginative and creative than the majority of film-making today and still grips and thrills me.  Essentially itís an early draft of North by Northwest, and whilst falling short of its glory, it still holds its own as great fun.

One of my favourite aspects of this film is the arrangement of kind-hearted characters Barry meets on his travels along the way.  The highlight for me is the lorry driver, played by Murray Alper, who is longing for a bit of excitement and gets it with Barry.  He steals the scene every time heís on camera and is a delight to watch.  The travelling circus also entertains.  Itís great to see how these people interact with each other and how theyíre ultimately good people, despite their appearance.  The only encounter which doesnít fully work is the meeting with the blind man.  I think itís too much of a stretch to believe that he can Ďsense innocenceí although itís still an ok scene.

This film is also full of great memorable moments.  The opening with the huge explosion is great and something Iím sure even todayís action junkies would enjoy.  I personally loved watching Barry escape by jumping into the river.  Again, it may be a bit of a stretch for him to be able to swim and survive wearing handcuffs, but a good moment nonetheless.  And of course, the classic end sequence atop the Statue of Liberty is enthralling.  Again, this is a moment he would perfect in North by Northwest on Mount Rushmore, but it is full of suspense and is a first-rate climax.


Verdict:  Far from perfect, but even further from dull.  Saboteur is a well-paced, inventive thrill-ride, which still shouldnít be missed. 8/10


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Check out my Hitchcockian Adventure in Lists and Top 10's
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(in reply to doncopey1)
Post #: 23
RE: PB's Hitchcockian Adventure - Saboteur - 3/2/2009 6:50:19 PM   
swordsandsandals


Posts: 12571
Joined: 6/1/2006
From: A magical forest
I'm not keeping up very well here, am I?

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ORIGINAL: Rawlinson

Swords is right about everything.



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ORIGINAL: Hood_Man

Swords smells like bum.



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Post #: 24
RE: PB's Hitchcockian Adventure - Saboteur - 3/2/2009 6:51:23 PM   
PB~!


Posts: 804
Joined: 4/1/2008
Well, perhaps I've just had more free time than you.  I'm sure you'll love them when you get round to them.  Have you watched any yet?

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Check out my Hitchcockian Adventure in Lists and Top 10's
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(in reply to swordsandsandals)
Post #: 25
RE: PB's Hitchcockian Adventure - Saboteur - 3/2/2009 6:54:45 PM   
swordsandsandals


Posts: 12571
Joined: 6/1/2006
From: A magical forest
quote:

ORIGINAL: PB~!

Well, perhaps I've just had more free time than you.  I'm sure you'll love them when you get round to them.  Have you watched any yet?


Only Rear Window, which I'll comment on when you get round to reviewing it.


_____________________________

quote:

ORIGINAL: Rawlinson

Swords is right about everything.



quote:

ORIGINAL: Hood_Man

Swords smells like bum.



(in reply to PB~!)
Post #: 26
RE: PB's Hitchcockian Adventure - Saboteur - 3/2/2009 7:38:45 PM   
elab49


Posts: 54583
Joined: 1/10/2005
Saboteur is on C4 during the day at some point next week if you'd like a look

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Deviation] LIKE AMERICA'S SWEETHEARTS TOO. IT MADE ME LAUGH A LOT AND THOUGHT IT WAS WITTY. ALSO I FEEL SLOWLY DYING INSIDE. I KEEP AGREEING WITH ELAB.


Annual Poll 2013 - All Lists Welcome

(in reply to swordsandsandals)
Post #: 27
RE: PB's Hitchcockian Adventure - Saboteur - 3/2/2009 7:49:07 PM   
PB~!


Posts: 804
Joined: 4/1/2008
And what did you think of Saboteur elab?

_____________________________

no guilt in life, no fear in death

Check out my Hitchcockian Adventure in Lists and Top 10's
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(in reply to elab49)
Post #: 28
RE: PB's Hitchcockian Adventure - Saboteur - 3/2/2009 11:12:06 PM   
Dr Lenera

 

Posts: 3958
Joined: 19/10/2005
Loved reading this thread I'm a big Hitchcock fan myself,might contribute the odd review myself if you don't mind and I have the time lol. Will say that I don't regard Rope or Saboteur [a weaker rehash of The 30 Steps in my opinion!] that highly but Shadow Of A Doubt is definately a masterpiece and was Hitch's favourite of all his films I think.

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(in reply to PB~!)
Post #: 29
RE: PB's Hitchcockian Adventure - Saboteur - 3/2/2009 11:27:29 PM   
elab49


Posts: 54583
Joined: 1/10/2005
I thoroughly enjoyed Satoteur - good, fun adventure with some lovely visual and action setpieces (per your review). Not in the highest rank, though.

Shadow of a Doubt was Hitchcock's own favourite. Man had taste 

_____________________________

Lips Together and Blow - blogtasticness and Glasgow Film Festival GFF13!

quote:

ORIGINAL: Deviation] LIKE AMERICA'S SWEETHEARTS TOO. IT MADE ME LAUGH A LOT AND THOUGHT IT WAS WITTY. ALSO I FEEL SLOWLY DYING INSIDE. I KEEP AGREEING WITH ELAB.


Annual Poll 2013 - All Lists Welcome

(in reply to Dr Lenera)
Post #: 30
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