Monday, 26 December 2011

Spellbound : Who Are You?

Wishing to live the life of someone else is not a different thing for us. People do like to imagine themselves in the place of someone else.

To feel what does it be to live the life of your favorite actor, singer, etc is fun.
Even though it
feels good and funny to think that way, you know for sure you'll remain yourself.

If you are an over weighted person and you look up to some well built person you know, you would love to fancy either being that person or having that kind of physique to yourself. But your mind would know it's not you nor that
physique is yours. Nothing will change, except for a small smile will appear on your face  for having such stupid thoughts. There can be many more such examples where you would like to keep yourselves in others shoes.

But what if, one day you'd completely be one different person?
What if your mind would cease to believe that you are not yourself but someone else?
Now that would create problems.
Such is the movie Spellbound. Directed by the great master of suspense Alfred Hitchcock. It was released in 1945.

Dr. Constance Petersen (Ingrid Bergman) is a psychoanalyst at Green Manors, a mental hospital in Vermont. She is bit disappointed when she learns that the  director of her hospital, Dr. Murchison (Leo G. Carroll) is being forced into retirement and a new director is coming. A very young doctor Dr. Anthony Edwardes (Gregory Peck) enters in as
Dr. Murchison's replacement.

Things blossom out between the two young doctors. But they don't get easy when

Dr. Petersen notices Dr. Edwardes to be ill. He has some psychological illness. Any set of parallel lines on a white surface scare him. He shows symptoms of being mentally ill in spite of being a doctor himself.

It doesn't take long for  Dr. Petersen to find that this Dr. Edwardes is an imposter and the actual Dr. Edwardes is dead. When confronted and searched it turns out that this imposter's initials are J.B.

J.B suffers from a massive amnesia and a guilt complex which makes his mind push the guilt of killing Dr. Edwardes and makes him to take the doctor's place.

But Dr. Petersen believes that he is innocent and has not killed anybody. She loves him truly. Dr. Petersen escapes with him when the hospital authorities find out about J.B and are about to turn him to the police.

The movie continues further with Dr. Petersen solving the murder mystery of the real Dr. Edwardes and decoding the strange dreams and phobia of parallel lines faced by J.B.

What is his real name? Also if J.B has not killed Dr. Edwardes, then who is the killer?

What trauma in the childhood made J.B to have such a guilt complex? How do all things including J.B's mental condition get better, the escape from police, taking shelter in an old mentor's house of
Dr. Petersen and how his input is significant forms the rest of the movie.

I felt good when I had seen the movie but I felt much better today when I wrote about it. It's a kind of must watch movie if thrillers and suspense are your genres.


  1. Some how i ended in your blog ..I m searching a blog who writes some old movies .. thx for sharing some old movies ..ll try to download this one ..

  2. I guess I need to watch it. I think you have a great taste for movies:)

  3. @ ben : Thanks for dropping by. I write about movies I like.

    @ Saru Singhal : Yea watch it, it would be worth your time. Movies are almost as equivalent to breathing for me. :)

  4. Spellbound is my favorite Hitchcock movie. Even though Peck is a good actor,Bergman steals the show. Seeing that you are a fan of the genre, I would like to recommend Vertigo.

  5. You said it right, Bergman steals the show.
    But Peck was a newbie then, where as Bergman was a craze.
    I have seen Vertigo, it's one of my favorites. :)