Detroit Film Theatre


DFT 101: VERTIGO

Saturday, July 02, 2011

4:00 PM

(USA/1958—directed by Alfred Hitchcock)

Hitchcock’s masterpiece may well be the cinema’s most memorable and disturbing portrait of erotic obsession. James Stewart is a San Francisco detective forced to retire due to his newly-discovered fear of heights; Kim Novak is the woman who Stewart is persuaded to follow, with labyrinthine and catastrophic results. Rarely has a city’s landscape so brilliantly reinforced a movie’s theme – indeed, every aspect of Vertigo, from its cinematography to its pacing to the magnificent musical score by Bernard Herrmann, blends to create a visionary portrait of mystery and desire that is, like all great films, far bigger than the sum of its parts. Critically underrated upon its original release, the consensus on Vertigo has changed dramatically in recent years; it’s now rightly considered one of the towering achievements of its gifted creator. (128 min.)

“A great film. One of the two or three best that Hitchcock ever made.” –Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times