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Vertigo (1958)

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A former police detective juggles wrestling with his personal demons and becoming obsessed with a hauntingly beautiful woman.

Director:

Alfred Hitchcock

Writers:

Alec Coppel (screenplay by), Samuel A. Taylor (screenplay by) (as Samuel Taylor) | 2 more credits »
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Popularity
1,512 ( 90)
Top Rated Movies #76 | Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 8 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
James Stewart ... John 'Scottie' Ferguson
Kim Novak ... Madeleine Elster / Judy Barton
Barbara Bel Geddes ... Midge Wood
Tom Helmore ... Gavin Elster
Henry Jones ... Coroner
Raymond Bailey ... Scottie's Doctor
Ellen Corby ... Manager of McKittrick Hotel
Konstantin Shayne ... Pop Leibel
Lee Patrick ... Car Owner Mistaken for Madeleine
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Storyline

John "Scottie" Ferguson is a retired San Francisco police detective who suffers from acrophobia, and Madeleine is the lady who leads him to high places. A wealthy shipbuilder who is an acquaintance from college days approaches Scottie and asks him to follow his beautiful wife, Madeleine. He fears she is going insane, maybe even contemplating suicide, as he believes she has been possessed by a dead ancestor who committed suicide. Scottie is skeptical, but agrees to the assignment after he sees the beautiful Madeleine. Written by filmfactsman

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A Hitchcock thriller. You should see it from the beginning! See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

21 July 1958 (Brazil) See more »

Also Known As:

Darkling I Listen See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$2,479,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$10,783, 30 October 1983, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$3,200,000

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$25,000,000, 31 January 1998
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (1996 restored)

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)| DTS (70 mm prints)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.50 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The flower shop, Podesta Baldocchi, has been in business in San Francisco since 1871. See more »

Goofs

When Madeleine enters the church, she leaves the door opened behind her. When Scottie comes to the door moments later, the door is fully closed. He has to pull it open, and then deliberately pull it closed as he enters the church, unlike Madeleine for whom the door apparently closed automatically. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Officer on rooftop: Give me your hand. Give me your hand.
See more »

Crazy Credits

There is no end title on this film. See more »

Alternate Versions

The version shown by AMC on 11/29/2013 contains the original VistaVision soundtrack. See more »

Connections

Referenced in House: Whac-A-Mole (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

Symphony No. 34 in C K. 338, 2nd Movement, Andante di Molto (piu tosto allegretto)
(uncredited)
Composed by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Played as 'cue 10B' on a record in the psychiatric ward
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

A true Hitchcock classic; Stewart's gutsiest role
23 April 2003 | by george.schmidtSee all my reviews

VERTIGO (1958) **** James Stewart, Kim Novak, Barbara Bel Geddes, Tom Helmore, Henry Jones. Alfred Hitchcock's masterpiece of suspense and romantic obsession: Stewart (in one of his best go-against-the-grain performances) stars as San Francisco cop John 'Scottie' Ferguson, whose eponymous phobia leads him to an on-the-job lethal accident. Sitting out his time off from the force he's enlisted as a private eye to watch a friend's troubled wife Madeleine Elster (the ethereal Novak), who believes she has been reincarnated. Scottie's case leads to complications including the necropheliac emotional overhaul he succombs to after Madeleine's 'suicide' and seeing her in mystery woman Judy Barton (Novak again, proving to be an accomplished actress).

More psychological underpinnings you could shake a stick at and thanks to The Master's multi-layered storyline the film never falters largely thanks to the incredibly affective cinematography by Robert Burks, the adaptation of Pieree Bouileau & Thomas Narcejaq's novel 'D'Entre les Morts' by Alec Coppel & Samuel Taylor and once again the excellent chemistry between the tormented Stewart and the bewitching Novak, proving to be one of the most passionate ill-fated couples in cinematic history. Perhaps the icing on the cake is the hauntingly evocative score by long-time collaborator Bernard Herrmann. A true American classic.


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