Vertigo, released in 1958, is perhaps Alfred Hitchcock’s greatest movie, alongside Psycho (1960). While it didn’t succeed commercially, the film remains an undisputed thriller of the 1950s.
When it was announced that a video game based on Alfred Hitchcock’s Vertigo would be released in 2021, everyone was excited about it. However, almost every Vertigo fan was perplexed after the game was released.
So, how does the Vertigo game differ from the original classic film? And does Alfred Hitchcock fool the audience with the most enigmatic scene in the movie?
Vertigo Explained: Does Alfred Hitchcock Cheat the Audience?
Before we discuss the video game, let’s get the most perplexing question out of the way. In the film, there is a part where Scottie meets Madeleine for the second time when she stands by the inn’s window.
However, when Scottie meets the innkeeper, she states that there is no one with the name Madeleine, and she even shows the key as proof of that. Later, they enter the room to make sure of his accusation. So, how could Madeleine disappear instantly from the inn?
While many believe it was a way to cheat the audience to make them believe that Scottie is, in fact, hallucinating or let them weave out their own answers, one likely possibility is that the innkeeper could also be part of Gavin Elster’s plan. If that’s the case, she could very well have a spare key.
It isn’t explicitly hinted at in the film, so it is normal to feel as if Hitchcock has cheated the audience without providing an explanation. When asked Hitchcock about this specific scene, he claimed it was a Fridge Logic (recall the incident after everything happened while you’re taking cold chicken out of the fridge).
Vertigo Movie vs. Game: How Both Differ from Each Other?
The easiest way to decode how far both Vertigo film and game are from being similar to each other is by comparing their storylines. Honestly, they are miles apart, as the stories don’t even match.
For example, the classic film Vertigo follows a retired detective, Scottie, who, after witnessing the death of a fellow policeman during a rooftop chase, develops a fear of heights and vertigo (feels as if objects are moving when they are not).
To treat his severe illness, his friend Gavin Elster formulates a plan by hiring a girl named Madeleine and asks Scottie to help him by secretly following her as he fears she is possessed.
After a series of events, we see Madeleine falling to her death from a bell tower, but after a year, she once again reunites with Scottie in the form of Judy, a girl who bears a striking resemblance to Madeleine.
Ultimately, Scottie finds out about Gavin’s ploy and attempts to question Judy at the bell tower, but she unexpectedly falls to her death, which inadvertently cures Scottie’s illness for once.
In the game, though, we have different characters and an entirely distinct story with a classic Vertigo theme as the base for the storyline. In the game, we follow Ed Miller, a writer who witnesses a car wreck on a hill, where he supposedly loses his wife and daughter.
Ever since the traumatizing incident, he experiences vertigo and seeks professional help through therapy, and we, the audiences, navigate through the scenes as he tries to learn what exactly happened.
In that sense, the game isn’t exactly a remake of the film or a side story. It only utilizes the concept of vertigo, and the rest is a newly written story and has nothing to do with Alfred Hitchcock’s original movie.
In a nutshell, the video game is indeed inspired by the original film, and they sought to use Alfred Hitchcock’s name in order to draw more attention from the movie fans.
So, have you watched Vertigo yet? And how was your experience playing the video game? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below.