Saturday, March 14, 2009

Alfred Hitchcock's "North by Northwest" (1959)



In North by Northwest, both space and identities are deconstructed, broken down to pieces, and then rearranged.




In Hitchcock's films, fantasies and nightmares are all intertwined. And characters very often talk about this very openly. Here are some dialogues from North by Northwest, interveawing sex and death:


Roger O. Thornhill: Tell me... How does a girl like you get to be a girl like you?
Eve Kendall: Lucky, I guess?
Roger O. Thornhill: Oh, not lucky. Naughty. Wicked, up to no good. Ever kill anyone? Because I bet you could tease a man to death without half trying. So stop trying, ha?


Roger O. Thornhill: I wonder what subtle form of manslaughter is next on the program. Am I to be dropped into a vat of molten steel and become part of a new skyscraper? Or are you going to ask this female to kiss me again and poison me to death?


The Professor: If I thought there was any chance of changing your mind, I'd talk about Miss Kendall, of whom you so obviously disapprove.
Roger O. Thornhill: Yes, for using sex like some people use a flyswatter.


By the way, she does kill him in the film, but it is an illusion.


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