Dysfunction at the Elsinore

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Vertigo, Alfred Hitchcock’s classic film about erotic longing, obsession and despair is coming to the Elsinore.  The 1958 film stars James Stewart and Kim Novak.  It is one of Hitchcock’s darkest pictures and one of his most admired.

Stewart plays a police detective forced into early retirement by fear of heights and clinical depression.  He is asked by an old acquaintance to follow the man’s wife who, the man says, has been behaving oddly.  The moment Stewart agrees to the job he becomes embroiled in events and emotions beyond his ken.

Vertigo features a great, haunting score by Bernard Herrmann and was filmed on-location in San Francisco.  The City by The Bay is well represented, including its streets, Nob Hill, Ernie’s Restaurant and Fort Point below the Golden Gate Bridge.

Dated though it may be by 50’s conventions, Vertigo is arguably Hitchcock’s finest movie and this year it replaced Citizen Kane as the best film of all time by the Sight and Sound critic’s poll.

Many San Francisco locations – including Ernie’s – are gone now.  Hitchcock is gone.  Stewart is gone.

But the film Vertigo lives on.
November 28, 7 p.m.  126 minutes.

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