Suppose she turned suddenly on him and said:

‘Yes, I was dead. I’ve come back from down there. And these blue eyes of mine have seen…’

Would he not fall dead himself, struck by lightning?

‘Now I really am going out of my mind,’ he thought. ‘But if you carry logic to its uttermost extreme, isn’t that the same thing as madness?’

~ D’entres le Mortes, by Boileau and Narcejac.


7 Responses to “Suppose”

  1. The best commentary on this scene can be found in Chris Marker’s La Jetee.

  2. SANS SOLEIL has a brief section that is entirely an essay on VERTIGO an goes to the Redwood forests for that legendary haunting(and erotic) scene.

    The forest also resembles the one in which the climax of BERLIN ALEXANDERPLATZ takes place.

  3. Don’t feed the Ewoks.

    Bill Krohn compares the film to Cocteau’s Orphee, which I ought to watch again (it’s been YEARS). Certainly the Orpheus and Eurydice connection is explicitly stated in the novel.

  4. ORPHEE recast a myth in terms of a detective story pulp fiction. VERTIGO raises a detective story pulp fiction to the levels of myth. The film has elements of re-incarnation, eros, morbid doom and it makes transparent the functioning and illusory nature of the myth but it still has the effect of a mythical story. It has this dream like sensibility whereas with Cocteau he modernized the story made it totally accessible and still showed how timeless the story was.

  5. Christopher Says:

    strange scene for an urban drama..You sure Hitch isn’t just taking us on a tour of northern California?..

  6. Andrew Sarris liked to point out that it was in some ways a remake of THE LADY EVE:

    “I still say it’s the same dame.”

  7. Hitch, after choosing a setting, would ask, “What do they have in…” be it Switzerland, London or New York. So Vertigo was specifically written to exploit California as a setting. The novel specifies an old church, which they wouldn’t have had, but they have plenty of old missions, and that led him to think of San Francisco as a centrepoint, and brought in the Spanish part of the story (early drafts kept the name Pauline Lagerlac from the novel, before Carlotta Valdes was invented).

    The Lady Eve connection is funny — I guess both films have the same odd two-part structure, but in the Sturges we know what Stanwyck knows right from the start, whereas Hitchcock confines us to Stewart’s POV for two thirds of the story.

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