Alicia Huberman’s (Ingrid Bergman) behaviour is NOTORIOUS.
Has she had enough to drink? “The important drinking hasn’t started yet.”
“You can add Sebastian’s name to my list of playmates”
And personally I wouldn’t trust her as my chauffeuse!
So what’s on the menu of this excellent melodrama? For a start it includes some dodgy fare … burnt chicken, indigestible wine and adulterated coffee. And you’ll find a heady stew of manipulation and blackmail, disappointment and murder, all seasoned with occasional expressions of trust and openness to love.
T.R. Devlin(Cary Grant) is a government agent aiming to infiltrate a group of Nazis who fled Germany for Brazil after World War 2. The setting is Rio de Janeiro in 1946. Essentially, Notorious is a Hitchcockian romance highlighting tensions between feelings of love and duty, which rivals Michael Curtiz’s film Casablanca (1942) for style and entertainment. The script, acting, screenplay and photography all showcase director Alfred Hitchcock at his best. If you are quick you can even see Hitchcock quaffing a glass of champagne just over an hour into the film.
Alicia: This is a very strange love affair.Devlin: Why?Alicia: Maybe the fact that you don’t love me.
Another psychological element is Alex Sebastian’s (Claude Rains) intriguing relationship with his mother, Anna Sebastain (Leopoldine Konstantin).
Madame Sebastian to her son: “We are protected by the enormity of your stupidity … for a time”.
Maybe I should have mentioned that Alex is also in love with Alicia …
So get along to the Picture House to see this iconic film at 2pm this August Bank Holiday Monday.