Vertigo ★★★★★

A film surrounded by ghostly presence, taking on a form of the supernatural - an unconscious in most of Hitchcock's films but text here. It extends through the environment of San Francisco, a city filled with fog, haunted houses of sad histories, and most essentially a European flavor, carried over brick by brick. Stewart tracks a haunted being, a performance in which he recognizes both the artifice and the reality, but can't tell that only the emotional core remains authentic. The colors pop—a green dress in a world of grays, a gray suit among the blissful blue sky—remaining tense as the score bellows an eerily presence among the towering sequoia trees. "You're a big boy. You know about those," Midge tells Scotty about a new brassiere, but he's clearly an adolescent in his belief of campfire tales and his gullibility toward the beauty of blondes. Downward into the spiral; a belief that re-creating the mise-en-scene of the past is the same as reviving it (Myth of Total Cinema indeed), lost in a swirling dream of his own visions. Not an obsessed film but a film obsessed with its own obsession, turning the tables early in order to flip our switch from true belief to incredulous shock. Along with Marnie, a rare lack of comic shield to hide the Master of Suspense from his own psyche, and with that, an unleashing of pure id. The turn of Novak's head (three times) from the kiss is the reminder that beyond her own desire for Stewart is the director: peering, watching, penetrating; all turning "just entertainment" into something monstrous.

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