I don't know who exactly declared this 1958 Alfred Hitchcock film a "masterpiece," but that person obviously confused the differences between being entertained and being comatose. "Vertigo" is duller than Craig Kilborn's wit.
Jimmy Stewart plays Scottie, an acrophobic detective who gets up too high and faints like a teenage girl during a Ricky Martin concert. During one of these episodes a cop dies, and Scottie feels guilty. Then a friend gives him the job of following his wife, Madeleine (Kim Novak), which Scotty does, promptly falling in love with a woman one-quarter his age. Put it this way: Take three decades off these two actors' respective ages, and a full-grown Jimmy Stewart would be kissing a fetus.
Little does Scottie know that he's being set up, and he doesn't care. He's in love with a false image and since he's a man, he's going to maintain the fantasy until he kills it or it kills him. Scottie would seem to have a perfectly good woman in Midge (Barbara Bel Geddes), but she's so motherly it sickens him. One touch from the quintessential Hitchcock woman, Madeleine, and you'd swear Stewart's penis was going to leap out of his pants and declare itself sovereign.
This film moves about as fast as Stewart talks. Combine this with the talents of Kim Novak (the William Shatner of actresses) plus stretches between dialogue lasting up to fifteen minutes, and jumping out of a tower suddenly seems like a good alternative to sitting through this psychobabble.
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