NOTORIOUS/HITCHCOCK etc.

Here’s a very well-done tribute-doc to my favorite Hitchcock film ‘Notorious’ (I know I’m far from alone in this opinion–it’s the one that, in my opinion, is much more emotional, better scripted and capable of being revisited than many others). Misleadingly titled ‘The Making Of…’ it’s more of a series of ruminations by different critics, talking heads and–of course–the uncategorizable Peter Bogdanovich on the film. Nonetheless it serves to make one want to rewatch the film almost upon completion of watching this doc and, surprisingly, does end with some previously little-known info about the ending; perfect though the ending is (as opposed to the ending of ‘Suspicion’ –see yesterdays post) it was arrived at only after strenuous effort. Several different versions were shot and abandoned. All are interesting–especially one in which the Bergman character dies–but none are close to being as perfect as the one we now and forever have. Much like ‘Casablanca’, the inevitability ‘Notorious’s closing moment was far from inevitable for the filmmakers. Bonus points: you get to not only hear Peter B.’s Hitch impression (which is subtler than most) but some of the audio of his first interview with Hitchcock in 1963, recorded at the master’s immense office on the Universal Studios lot over a lunch of Steak, French Fries and coffee.

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