Vertigo

I went to work and sat through an information session on active shooters.  I think that I might die if I had to face such an emergency situation.  I walked home and finished watching the fourth season of “Portlandia.”  Since it was the 58th anniversary of the premiere of “Vertigo,” I looked around the apartment for my DVD copy of it and watched it again.  What struck me was that the quality of the video wasn’t so great compared to high definition.  One scene that looked strange was the Argosy Bookstore, which went dark for a moment before becoming normal again.  I thought about how today that trip to the bookstore wouldn’t have been necessary because people do research on the Internet.  The Internet and phones sure have ruined the way old movies look today.  Movie audiences of today might find some moments very strange and even laughable, like when Scottie to Judy that the changes in her look can’t matter to her.  I always thought the biggest flaw was that Scottie wasn’t more skeptical about all this reincarnation business.  A psychological problem would be the believable explanation.  One of my favorite shots in the entire picture is the Palace of Fine Arts with the birds flying.  I imagined what the movie would have been like with either Vera Miles or Grace Kelly.  I would find it hard to believe that Scottie could feel so strongly about Vera Miles.  I haven’t seen “The Wrong Man” in a long time, although I saw “Psycho.”  Grace Kelly would have been very interesting for the movie and for audiences, but perhaps not quite right for the story.  I thought the strategy for the plot was wrong.  They shouldn’t have insisted on the reincarnation angle.  It’s sad that Midge has her last scene with forty minutes left, but it made me think about how much ground is covered in those last forty minutes of the film.  The saddest moment is Judy’s plea for Scottie to love her for the person she really was.  What really surprised me was that she gave no hint of recognition when Scottie first appeared at the door.  I wasn’t sure if the building was called the Empire Hotel or the Hotel Empire.  The name seems comical because there’s not much to the place.  I wonder how much the rates would be today.  I noticed the ballet pictures in Judy’s room.  I thought the nightmare sequence could have been done differently and perhaps more effectively.  The movie seems to be partly about falling in love with false images of people, which is like what happens with movie and their fans.  Scottie watches a lot of death in this movie.  I wondered how much trouble he got into at the end, or after the end.  Did they check the lips of the corpse?  Among Hitchcock’s color movies, I think of “Rear Window” and “Vertigo” as his best.  I don’t think I’ve ever seen the Golden Gate Bridge look so dramatic and beautiful on film.  Kim Novak didn’t look better in another film.  I don’t know how she got dressed so quickly while Scottie was on the phone.  One of her good moments was her look of dread when Scottie was taking her to the mission.  That reminded me of something concerning Scottie’s driving.  When they are going to the mission, he seems to be driving on the left side, with perhaps one shot of him driving on the right.  I thought maybe the road was divided into two sides of two lanes, but when they make a turn to the mission grounds, it didn’t look that way.  I suppose it wasn’t too unusual for the church to be unlocked.  They don’t expect crimes to occur there.  I guess it wouldn’t be incredibly difficult for two people in the tower to sneak past everyone in the confusion of a horrible incident.  How is it that there was a nun at the top of the tower?  If there was a nun at the top of the tower, then couldn’t she hear everything that was being said?  How fast did the relationship between Scottie and Judy develop?  Scottie mentions that it has been the past few days that were his happiest in a year.  I’m not sure that this is the greatest movie of all time, but I could watch it over and over.  I don’t think I would ever want to watch it again on DVD, however.  Much of the time I wished that I had a Blu-ray copy of it.  I thought that this was one of James Stewart’s greatest performances.  I’ll also remember him for “Mr. Smith Goes to Washington,” “Rear Window,” and “Harvey.”  Hitchcock would have about another six prime years left in his directing career.  He really had a fantastic and incredible career.  I would vote for “Vertigo” as the greatest Hitchcock film, followed by “Rear Window,” “Notorious,” and “Psycho.”  One thing I’ll always remember is his discussion of “Frenzy” on a television show.  I’m old enough to have firsthand memories of Hitchcock.  The music from Bernard Herrmann was remarkable.  I saw Tony Bennett and Fred Astaire on The Merv Griffin Show.  Pearl Bailey and Rosemary Clooney sang songs.  The Warriors game in Portland went into an overtime period.  They won 132-125.  Stephen Curry scored 27 points in the fourth quarter and in overtime.  He wasn’t supposed to play that much during his first game back from the injury.  I had told someone at work that I was not worried about this game.  I thought they had a good chance to win as long as Curry was on the court.  He scored 17 points in overtime and 40 points total.  “Shamus” was on one movie channel again.  The woman in the first scene was not Dyan Cannon.  “Operation Mad Ball” was also on the schedule, but I wasn’t anxious to see it again.  Some of the people who died on May 10 include Joan Crawford (1977), Walker Percy (1990), and Shel Silverstein (1999).  Today is a birthday for Bono (56) and Donovan (70).  Fred Astaire was born 117 years ago today.  According to the Brandon Brooks Rewind radio segment for May 10, “Airport” was the Number One movie at the box office in 1970.  In 1983, ABC aired the final episode of “Laverne & Shirley.”  In 1985, The Go-Go’s announced their breakup.  In 1996, “Twister” was released.

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