Vertigo and Citizen Kane Are Products of their Mysogenistic Generation
1097 Words5 Pages
Today’s culture sees a gap between the male and female gender. This is evident in everything from the films we watch, music we listen to, and even in our everyday lives. Historically, this issue has seen an even larger gap, and can be observed in the films that were made during that time. Vertigo and Citizen Kane both show the objectification of women by controlling them, writing them in supportive roles, and placing their value in the way that they look.
In Alfred Hitchcock’s Vertigo, made in 1954, a detective falls in love with the woman that he is hired to investigate, not knowing her true identity. When the main character, Scottie, is hired by Gavin Elster, it is evident in the way that Elster talks about Madeleine that he regards her…show more content… Kane hires a world class singing instructor, builds an opera house, and writes exaggerating reviews in his own paper. Even with all of Kane’s support, she fails horrible as a singer. Kane refuses to acknowledge this, and pushes her through her career, to the point that she attempts to take her own life, rather than continue on. In a future interview with a journalist, she says, “I didn't want it. I didn't want to sing. It was his idea. Everything was his idea…” Later in their marriage, Kane finally allows her to stop singing, though Kane keeps her locked up in his large estate, Xanadu. She constantly begs him to allow her out, to experience the world, or to talk to other human beings but is always denied. She is bound to her jigsaw puzzles and is kept inside as if she is one of many in Kane’s statue collection. The level of man’s control over women in both films leaves the women with little, in terms of their involvement with the narrative as the man takes the lead. In Vertigo, Scottie is the lead and drives the narrative. The women in the film only play supportive roles. The other woman in Scottie’s life is Midge, a friend who he had previously been engaged to. It seems as though Scottie only ever interacts with her when he is in need of something. After tailing Madeline, Scottie comes to Midge’s apartment and, without even greeting her, asks if she knows any historians to aid his