Monday, January 24, 2011

Inducing vertigo and/or nausea

It's bad enough when I tell you about my poker-themed dreams. Now, for just this once, I'm going to tell you about one from last night that had nothing to do with poker--because it's just too funny not to share.

I'm a huge Alfred Hitchcock fan. I've seen "Vertigo" many times, and think it's his greatest achievement. It's also his most psychologically disturbing work (with "Frenzy" a close second). It is not appropriate material for children--not because of any overt sexual or violent content, but because of how Scottie gradually and abusively seizes control over Judy, and bullies her into transforming herself into a doppelganger of his lost love.

So in this dream I am, for some now-forgotten reason, sitting with a few other adults at the back of a first-grade classroom. They're showing the kids "Vertigo." I'm aware that it's a version that has been altered to better suit the sensibilities of youngsters, and I'm not liking the changes.

My frustration with the revisions reaches a peak when we get to the scene in the clothing store, where Scottie keeps rejecting dresses for Judy--ones that she likes--until he finds the one that matches what he remembers Madeleine wearing. But in the toned-down version being shown in class, Judy politely declines to put it on, and, to deal with Scottie's agitation, makes some excuse to leave the shop. As she's walking out, she tells him, "I'll contact you on Facebook."

That was the final straw for me. I said out loud, "Facebook?" The first-grade teacher tried to shush me. I would not be silenced. I said again, "Facebook? In a 1958 movie? That's just too messed up!" And I left.

It's bad enough when they colorize classic black-and-white films. When they start adding anachronistic Internet references to old cinematic masterpieces, they've really gone too far. Even my dreaming subconscious recognizes the outrage of it all.

1 comment:

Josie said...

"Someone" has an aversion to change. I'm just sayin'.