Comments on watching and making films.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

The Lady Vanishes

NOTE: This post is a review of a Hitchcock film that was seen projected on 35mm at the Belcourt Theater in Nashville, TN, as part of their Alfred Hitchcock: Master of Suspense Series. These movies were not watched on DVD, but in a theater, projected on film.

In The Lady Vanishes, Iris (Margaret Lockwood) plays a young, privileged woman on a railroad trip home to marry her fiancee. The night before she leaves, she meets a nice, older woman, Miss Froy (Dame May Whitty), and a carefree troublemaker named Gilbert (Michael Redgrave). Before boarding the train, a large object is accidentally dropped on her head, causing her lingering pain. Miss Froy sits with her on the train, and makes her feel comfortable enough to take a nap. When she wakes up, though, Miss Froy is gone, and no one seems to remember her ever being there in the first place. She has to enlist the help of Gilbert to help find Miss Froy, if, in fact, she exists at all.

Hitchcock really put a lot into this. It is equal parts comedy, suspense, and mystery. Because it is so many things at once, it can sometimes seem a little lop sided, but you notice it rarely. Everything in The Lady Vanishes is top notch, as is expected from a Hitchcock film, by this point in his career.

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