Vertigo: the Making of Hitchcock Classic Special Edition When the newly restored print of Alfred Hitchcock's 1958 thriller, Vertigo, was released nationally to sold-out theaters in 1996, New York Times critic Janet Maslin called it "the deepest, darkest masterpiece" of the director's career. That couldn't have been obvious to those behind the scenes during the film's turbulent production four decades ago, according to Auiler, a film collector and teacher. In this splashy companion/study guide, Auiler traces the "matter-of-fact circumstances under which this odd, obsessional, very unmatter-of-fact film was created." He reconstructs the sometimes uneasy give-and-take between Hitchcock and his playersAactors Jimmy Stewart, Kim Novak and Barbara Bel Geddes; screenwriters Samuel Taylor and Alec Coppel; Robert Burks and his second-unit cameraman who created the now-famous Vertigo effect (a forward-zoom/dolly-out shot); and Bernard Hermann, who composed the mesmerizing score. Interesting factoids abound, from details of the intermittent hospitalizations of Hitchcock and his wife for various ailments, to a list of inane titles suggested by Paramount executives unhappy with calling the film Vertigo; from information about a pop song of the same name commissioned by the studio but never released, to details of Novak's widely reported off-screen dalliances with Sammy Davis Jr. and the son of the dictator of the Dominican Republic. Interspersed throughout are sections of dialogue from the film, notes and memos from Hitchcock and an interview with the restoration team. This is a fittingly levelheaded history of a film whose dizzying complexity continues to fascinate.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.