Spellbound Blu-ray: Review By JIm Mourgos

Decent Hitchc*ck Thriller!
  • Feature
  • Picture
  • Sound
  • Extras
  • Replay Value
When I see 'directed by Hitchc*ck' I do expect some wild and crazy storylines and here I was not disappointed. A frosty psychologist, the only woman in a male field at Green Manors mental hospital, gets hit on by the staff and rebuffed by the patients. Still, she takes her notes and takes it all in stride. One day, the head of the place (played well by Leo G. Carroll) retires and in walks Gregory Peck, whose character plays Dr. Edwardes, the new head of the Manor. Turns out he's an impostor with amnesia who may or may not have done away with the read Edwardes.

This is a bit of a plothole. No one ever checked on the guy? No photos? No susp*cion? And a woman doctor who has never been in love and considers the idea a bit above that of claws on a chalkboard suddenly falls for the first new guy who walks in the door? Gosh!

Ingrid Bergman is great, though at time overacts, in her portrayal of Dr. Stephanie Petersen, who risks her career and some say her life, in keeping the police away from "her patient" as she tries to crack his case before the police make him inaccessible.

A fairly dramatic scene ensues on the snow slopes. A gruesome scene of an accidental death. And the murderer is revealed.

What I liked best about this film was the artistic dream sequence by famous surrealist artist Salvador Dali. According to the special DVD features, Selzick (the producer) thought this would be a publicity stunt to have Dali in on the picture and that there were too many dream sequences. I imagine Hitch and Dali were going mad with delight putting this together, but for 1940s audiences, perhaps a bit above their heads!

The eyes on the curtains ,the mad man in a mask and the shocking episodes that go through the amesiatic and mysterious 'JB' make for an interesting picture. Won Best Music Score for that year.

You have to give Hitchc*ck credit for putting together some experimental cinema and pulled it off with the artist of the century at that time.

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