Vertigo

Vertigo ★★★★

“ You know, the Chinese say that once you've saved a person's life, you're responsible for it forever.”

This is the first Hitchcock film I’ve ever seen and while I was not disappointed in any way, I do wish that I could’ve given this 5 stars.

Vertigo follows the narrative of a former detective who falls in love with his friend’s wife. A lady who is supposedly very mentally unstable. ‘Scottie’ the detective, is portrayed as very fearful and naive to the true nature of love; making their affair fatal from the very start. You could even go as far as describing Madeline as Scottie’s anima. They’re both a mirror of a broken shell, crafted to fit to their surroundings.

After an unforeseen incident Scottie’s mental state begins to rapidly deteriorate. His mind decays under the disease of grief and obsession. Scottie eventually becomes a prisoner to his desires. Clinging onto anything that could possibly bring him closer to Madeline once again. Only to fall deeper and deeper into the darkness of his own mind.

I was fascinated by Scottie’s character in particular because we start off identifying with his beliefs. We feel sympathy towards him which in turn, leads us to want him to succeed. We want him and Madeline to be together just as much as he does. In the second half of the film, Hitchcock begins to make us question everything you thought about Scottie when he makes us feel uncomfortable with someone we rooted for and even saw parts of ourselves in.

Vertigo explores the link between what we desire and what we fear. Beautifully intertwining both until you reach the bone of human nature. The fear of death.
Films like this are my favourite because I find humanity extremely fascinating. Therefore vertigo was a film that really captivated me. From it’s interesting cyclical structure to the alluring dolly shots - Hitchcock’s attention to detail is insanely impressive, especially considering the time period in which this was made.

The only real criticism I have about this film is that it is a little slow at times. I personally believe that the running time could have been shortened by a little. However, I’m pretty excited to explore more of Hitchcock’s work.

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