North By Northwest/Vertigo on TCM tonight



You’ll find that I often reference the lineup on Turner Classic Movies on this blog. As a film addict, I can find almost any night on TCM is a pretty good reason to tune in. Tonight is even more so as they feature two of my favorites and biggest influences on my writing. The double feature of North By Northwest and Vertigo really shaped the subject matter of my novels.

The films are being shown to highlight the stellar work of genius graphic designer, Saul Bass. Bass is the man responsible for the title sequence lines in North By Northwest and the crazy maddening swirls that begin Vertigo.

For anyone who doubts the power and depth of a thriller or the depth of Jimmy Stewart, you only need to reference Vertigo. Stewart’s descent into obsession and madness is pitch perfect, falling for a girl that resembles a woman he watched die.

Not to mention some brilliant byplay with Barbara Bel Geddes. I remember first seeing this film in the ’80s and thinking how hot Miss Ellie used to be.

A small aside, pay close attention in North By Northwest to Cary Grant getting shot at Mount Rushmore (movie fans know this too well.) Watch the little boy in the cafeteria plug his ears before one shot is fired . . .

Even Hitch made little mistakes. Or perhaps left it in for the fun of it.

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