Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Movie Music Video of the Week

This week's classic film was the 1938 Hitchcock (British period) effort "The Lady Vanishes". I hadn't seen it before. Surprisingly I had never seen any Hitchcock movies until I undertook this educational program within the last couple of years. Their reputation, such as it was, for being good, but not in the ways bourgeois audiences thought they were good, I suspect psyched me out when I was younger. I had no interest in seeing them.

I still haven't seen that many to this point. Psycho seems to me to be overrated. Strangers on a Train was a very cool and good-looking movie to watch but I didn't think the plot was particularly brilliant in that either. I liked this one. The plot is pretty silly of course but the wit and humor throughout more than redeem this. I thought the climactic scene with all the jokes as the British vacationers have a shootout with the demented Germanic contigent was brilliant. I hadn't seen Margaret Lockwood, the de rigeuer Hitchcock "girl" of this movie, before, and I like her a lot. She looks really intelligent; the 1930s British form that intelligence took of course detracts nothing from the effect upon the imagination.. I don't know if it is that I like this generation of women better than the 50s and 60s generation, or Hitchcock had better taste as a younger man, but the type of girls he casts in these earlier films are much more interesting to me than those who came later. Five years after this movie we got the much-celebrated (on this blog anyway) Teresa Wright, who was also intelligent after the manner I like, in Shadow of a Doubt, which has a similar overriding theme, that is to buck up the prettiest girls and the boys who love them for a big fight in which Western Civilization itself hangs in the forest. I suppose you can't really go wrong with Grace Kelly, but Janet Leigh and people of that ilk didn't bring much to the entertainments that couldn't have been much more than a simple line of dialogue, a single movement, to begin with.

I'm falling asleep. Enjoy the song.

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