Jimmy Stewart is a cop is San Francisco, but during a chase, he develops a case of Vertigo and a fear of heights. This causes a fellow policeman to fall to his death. Jimmy Stewart retires from the police force and spends time with galpal and ex-fiance Midge, who tries to help him work through his phobia.
So Jimmy Stewart follows Kim Novak around, watching her at an art museum stare at a picture, go to a graveyard to stare at a tombstone, and so forth. Midge knows a guy that knows everything that always makes these movies 10% better, and finds out that Kim Novak’s great grandmother committed suicide. So Jimmy Stewart continues to follow Kim Novak around San Francisco until he sees her jump into the water off Fort Point, and Stewart jumps in and rescues her.
Novak awakens in Stewart’s bed, with no knowledge of the recent events, but yup, Jimmy is falling in love with Kim Novak. Not that I blame him, even though she’s like half his age- go Jimbo! But now when Jimmy follows Kim Novak around, it’s more creepy-looking. Jimmy and Kim Novak start falling in love, so I guess Jimmy Stewart’s buddy is screwed in saying she wasn’t cheating on him and he was just worried about her being possessed. Soon the lovebirds are out driving around, and Kim Novak runs into a Spanish Mission. Jimmy Stewart goes to follow her up the stairs, but his fear of heights stops him part-way, and Kim Novak jumps out a window to her death.
No, that’s not even close to the end of the movie. No Spoilers here, as I don’t want to give it away.
This is an Albert Hitchcoch movie, so of course it is STUNNING to look at. When the story slows down, and yes, the story really drags at a point, then you can take a look at whats going on around the frame, what Kim Novak is wearing, how she is looking, Hitchcoch is without a doubt trying to make sure she’s a star, the lighting, the city, how wooden Jimmy Stewart is looking, and so forth. The second time you watch the movie, you can notice a lot more of the little things, because you know the twist, you can spend the whole movie seeing how everything looks and how wooden one of our finest American Actors is being. This is a great movie to watch the second time around, because you notice so much. I’m going 10 here. It’s a color Hitchcoch, has Kim Novak to stare at, it’s wonderfully shot, and holds up when you throw it in a second or third time.
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