Vertigo (Flick’s Review)

Posted on | October 25, 2012 | Add Comments

5 stars

John Ferguson is an aerobic policeman. After retiring, John is pulled back in to it all by one of his old college friends. The old friend tells John that his wife has been acting like another person lately, she’s been driving ninety four miles without his knowing. As things get even more complex, the lines between who is who are blurred.

Vertigo is a film that will, currently is, and should be remembered for the ages. I saw the entire film., my brother fell asleep in the middle of it, so the next morning I watched the second half with him again. The second viewing of the second half (I hope I’m not giving you vertigo… yet) let me sink my teeth into all the tiny little details that I had missed the first time around. I know what you’re thinking: “That’s what happens every time you watch a film the second time. You pick up everything you missed the first time.” But there’s something about Vertigo (I’m still trying to wrap my head around it), it is the rare film that is almost flawless. It is so well rounded; in every scene we witness something even more mind boggling than the last.

The plot is incredibly interesting. I don’t think I have ever watched a film more complex than this, but the sophisticated storyline only builds the suspense. If the storyline was simple and uninteresting, then the suspense could only get as far as half baked. Why? Well if we don’t care about what’s happening, then there goes our interest. Right out the window.

This film is what everyone says it is: it’s a physiological puzzle that twists your brain until it hits the floor. If you want to watch something while folding laundry or doing work, let me suggest that Vertigo be last on your go-to list. If you do watch it at the right time however, you won’t be able to stop watching it, I couldn’t.With every good movie (and yes, I mean just plain old good movie), there is something that aids the brilliance. The layering on the cake, if you will. Here it’s the acting, the sets, everything. But there’s one element that you can’t miss. As I’m writing my review I’m listening to it now. It’s frighteningly sophisticated. It’s quiet, and then it will blare the horns and you’ll know it’s the tower scene. That’s right: it’s Bernard Herrmann’s nail bitingly unforgettable score.

It would be truly impossible to write an entire review of an Alfred Hitchcock film without mentioning the master of suspense, himself. Well there you go: I mentioned Hitchcock and I’m not done yet. Anyway, Hitchcock is a brilliant director. With each of the eight and a-bit-of films of his I’ve seen (North By Northwest, the original The Man Who Knew Too Much, Rear Window, To Catch A Thief, Notorious, The 39 Steps, the first half hour of Lifeboat, Rebecca, and now Vertigo) he tries to push himself a little farther. And here, if ever, he does.

My favorite character is Madeline because of the many different phases she goes through (I’m not going to give anything away), each one twisting your mind even further than the last.

My favorite scene is the second tower scene because it has amazing performances, Hitchcock masters it all with frighteningly exact precision, and oh the music. It is also one of the best finales in all of cinema history. Yes, ALL OF CINEMA HISTORY!

Vertigo is Not Rated, but I would rate it PG-13 for scenes of peril and complex situations.

A suspense film like no other, Vertigo may not be Hitchcock’s best, but it still is wonderfully good, bizarrely complex suspense.


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