Vertigo



Title: Vertigo
Directed by:
Alfred Hitchcock
Written by:
Boileau-Narcejac, Alec Coppel, Samuel A. Taylor
Year:
1958

John Ferguson (James Stewart) is forced to retire from his job as a detective when he develops acrophobia after failing to save a colleague from a deadly fall. However, he is soon recruited by an old friend who wants him to keep an eye on his wife, Madeleine Elster (Kim Novak). Why? Because he says that he believes there is something paranormal about his wife’s activities and he is worried that something bad is about to happen. This is true, to say the least, but even so, few things in Vertigo are as they seem.

I like carefully thought out plots such as the one presented in Vertigo. It is not something someone has put together in a few hours, but rather an elaborate story with many twists and turns. Throughout the film, I never lose a sense of mystery and suspense, which is of paramount importance for a film such as Vertigo. Also, I have come to like James Stewart rather a lot (I have recently watched Rear Window and Mr. Smith Goes to Washington).

However, I think there are flaws in this film that forces me to lower the grade somewhat (even though the four snails I give it is pretty good). For instance, I think there is a fault in the flow of information in the film, especially in the middle. In the beginning, it is okay to have just a sense of suspense and wonder to drag the viewer along, but that cannot go on forever. Gradually, parts of the plot have to be revealed, because otherwise I become bored. This goes too slowly in parts of this film. So, even though I think the film regarded as a whole is very good, parts of it felt rather dull, to be honest. The end wraps things up neatly and promptly asserts the notion that Vertigo is a well-made film indeed. The finale is well worth waiting for, but with such a mediocre middle part leading up to it, I cannot give more than four snails to Vertigo.

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