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DVD Special Features:
"Obsessed with Vertigo" featurette (29 mins)
Cast and Filmmakers' Notes
Languages: Dolby Digital 5.1 English, 3.0 Surround German, Mono French, Italian and Spanish
Subtitles: English, French, German, Dutch, Portuguese, Swedish, Norwegian, Finnish, Danish, Polish, Czech
Dreamlike and nightmarishly surreal, Vertigo is Hitchcock's most personal film because it confronts many of the convoluted psychological issues that haunted and fascinated the director. The psychological complexity and the stark truthfulness of their rampant emotions keeps these strangely obsessive characters alive on screen, and Hitchcock understood better than most their barely repressed sexual compulsions, their fascination with death and their almost overwhelming desire for transcendent love. James Stewart finds profound and disturbing new depths in his psyche as Scotty, the tortured acrophobic detective on the trail of a suicidal woman apparently possessed by the ghost of someone long dead. Kim Novak is the classical Hitchcockian blonde whose icy exterior conceals a churning, volcanic emotional core. The agonised romance of Bernard Herrmann's score accompanies the two actors as a third and vitally important character, moving the film along to its culmination in an ecstasy of Wagnerian tragedy. Of course Hitch lavished especial care on every aspect of the production, from designer Edith Head's costumes (he, like Scotty, was most insistent on the grey dress), to the specific colour scheme of each location, to the famous reverse zoom "Vertigo" effect (much imitated, never bettered). The result is Hitch's greatest work and an undisputed landmark of cinema history.
On the DVD: This disc presents the superb restored print of this film in a wonderful widescreen (1.85:1) anamorphic transfer, with remastered Dolby digital soundtrack. There's a half-hour documentary made in 1996 about the painstaking two-year restoration process, plus an informative commentary from the restorers Robert Harris and James Katz, who are joined by original producer Herbert Coleman. There are also text features on the production, cast and crew, plus a trailer for the theatrical release of the restoration. This is an undeniably essential requirement for every DVD collection. --Mark WalkerSee all Product description
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The film is set in San Francisco and employs a lovely warm colour palette.
The film contains as you’d expect some heavy themes, in one scene our characters gather round a stump of a tree which reveals 1000 years of human history in one tree’s lifetime, human life indeed seem short and fleeting.
Kim Novak gives a brilliant performance as her character is also wrestling with her own unresolved conflicts. Dare she reveal the devastating truth about herself?
The score is delightful and really carries the movie forward, Kim Novak has no dialogue until at least three quarters of an hour has past but the music conveys as much as any words ever could.
Warm rich colours make up San Francisco, lavish details and a strong unique style help make Vertigo visually distinctive to other Hitchcok films. The grey jacket on the icy blond hair and tanned skin of Kim Novak, doesn't quite work, but that's the point, there is something not quite right about her character.
Casting and acting was excellent, the story gripping but not gory. It had me totally hooked. Without spoiling it for anyone, its just a clever storyline, cleverly directed and performed. They don't make them like this anymore.
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