Thursday, 11 August 2016

A dream of dark and troubling things

"You're my second chance, Judy, you're my second chance.."

My Hitchcock season continues with Vertigo, and I came back to the film this morning like a prodigal son. Despite its status as a canonical work, I've never cared much for the film, but this latest screening, the first in over a decade, was something of a revelation, evidently maturity brings a greater appreciation for the dark currents that flow thru the film - the sequence where an addled James Stewart outfits Kim Novak in her predecessor's clothes is genuinely excruciating to watch. This is surely one of Hitchcock's most misanthropic films - exploitation, murder, manipulation - at least Henry Fonda's Wrong Man was given a last minute reprieve from his shattered life, but no mercy is afforded to Stewart's character who ends the film literally staring into the abyss...

Incidentally, I spotted a nice visual reference in the scene where Stewart tracks Novak to the Empire Hotel. Alongside the hotel, one can see a sign for a bar that reads "Twelfth Knight", presumably, a sly pun on the Twelfth Night, Shakespeare's riotous comedy about a set of twins and mistaken identity...

No comments:

Post a Comment