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Vertigo

Screening on Film
Directed by Alfred Hitchcock.
With James Stewart, Kim Novak, Barbara Bel Geddes.
US, 1958, 35mm, color, 120 min.

Hitchcock’s grand enigma was recently enshrined as the greatest film of all time in the British Film Institute’s respected survey, infamously displacing Citizen Kane for the first time in fifty years. A tantalizing spiral into the abyss, the film follows Scottie Ferguson, an ex-police detective in forced retirement after his last case ended in a tragic death, as he is enlisted as a private investigator to keep an eye on an old friend’s wife. Following Madeline, he is drawn into a sprawling riddle of love and death, from which he may never emerge. This is Hitchcock’s most profound and troubling exploration of his persistent themes: doppelgängers and duality, obsession, women trapped by deceit and the inexorable destructiveness of male desire. A cinematic landmark, Vertigo retains its power as a perplexing and harrowing nightmare.

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