15 days to go: Notorious (March, 24)

Half the way! Hey, walker (crutches, walking stick... whatever will help me to be on my foot again!): I'M COMING!!!

Do you doubt there's someone here that is tired of being at home on a wheel chair? I'm not complaining, life is getting better and better, but, come on, walking again will be the best thing :)

After spending an afternoon listening to Notorious on the TV while my mother was watching it, I've finally saw it at night. The second Hitchcock's movie in a roll, which is fortunate. The guy is a master movie maker, and this movie with the most beautiful creature in the universe (Ingrid Bergman) and Cary Grant (one of the funniest, for sure) is outstanding. Who is used to Hitchcock's methods, the rabbits he used to take out of his hat never get old. 

There are two cult scenes in here. First, the (in)famous kissing scene in a balcony at an apartment in Rio de Janeiro. The rule limiting kisses to 3 seconds was burled by Hitchcock with a beautifully woven scene. I didn't know about it before seeing the movie, and at the time of the scene I was thinking how incredible it was. The other one is the trick used by the director to put a coffee cup and Ingrid Bergman on focus at the same time. His intention was to highlight the poison in the coffee. He has resorted to a similar creative alternative in Under Capricorn, also with Bergman, in which he put a bulb inside a cup of milk to call the viewer attention to the glass (also possibly poisoned). 

There are many external scenes in Brazil, and I must say that I seldom saw such care in foreign productions. Yes, there are things out of place - a fur in the terribly hot Rio? Coats? No way, even in the Winter -, but there is also a perfectly Brazilian Portuguese spoken sometimes and great takes of the city. 

The plot is good, suspenseful, and even a bit heavy - what Bergman's character has to go through is dreadful. There's a heaviness here that is characteristic of Hitchcock, but even acknowledging that, I was a bit surprised. 

One thing I detested in this movie: Cary Grant knocking Bergman out in the car scene. Really, Alfred? That was terrible, even if Grant's character atones himself later in some good lines about how Alicia's life is her own (even if there's a pinch of spite in his statement). Bergman's Alicia is strong, thriven, smart, admirable under the most difficult circumstances. Nevertheless, the punch scene is still giving me chills.

Notorious. Directed by Alfred Hitchcock. Cast: Ingrid Bergman, Cary Grant,
Claude Rains. Writer: Ben Hecht. USA, 1946, Mono, Black and White, 101 min.


  1. We've talked about this, and it's set to be the next Hitchcock film I'll be watching, for sure. I'm so curious about it. I believe this should be my first Ingrid Bergman movie also. Should be remarkable, eh?
    I didn't read the last paragraph about the one thing you didn't like in it. I'll come back once I've seen it.

    [ j ]

    1. The first Ingrid Bergamn movie! A remarkable event for sure! Mine I'm not sure wich was - not Casablanca, but I cannot say exactly (I was a kid and absolutely in love with her, very shocked about her's and Grace Kelly's death - just one month apart from each other's). I hope you'll enjoy it !

    2. I did enjoy it! Watched it last night! Really good movie, and Ingrid Bergman's Alicia is fascinating. Strong, determined, vulnerable, out-daring, all in one.
      Funny how I skipped the last part where you mention a scene you hated, and whilst watching the movie I had a similar reaction to that scene. I didn't like what Grant's character does. But, overall, great film! Next, I'll read about it in my book :)

      [ j ]

    3. Are you enjoying your book??? :)