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Vertigo
(1958)
Album Cover Art
1990 Mercury
Varèse Re-Recording
Album 2 Cover Art
Varèse Original
Album 3 Cover Art
Composed by:
Bernard Herrmann

Conducted by:
Muir Mathieson

Re-Recording Conducted by:
Joel McNeely

Re-Recording Performed by:

Both Varèse Albums Produced by:
Robert Townson
Labels Icon
LABELS & RELEASE DATES
Mercury/Philips
(February 5th, 1990)

Varèse Sarabande
(November 5th, 1996)

Varèse Sarabande
(March 12, 1996)
Availability Icon
ALBUM AVAILABILITY
All three albums were regular U.S. releases. The two releases of the original score can be found for discount prices on the secondary market.
Awards
AWARDS
None.
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   Availability | Viewer Ratings | Comments | Audio & Track Listings | Notes
Buy it... on the early 1996 Varèse Sarabande re-recording if you seek the pinnacle in the collaboration between Alfred Hitchcock and Bernard Herrmann in stunning, digital sound.

Avoid it... on the re-recorded album only if you are a purist for original recordings and can tolerate the damage that the years have done to the score's mono and stereo master tapes.
Review Icon
EDITORIAL REVIEW
FILMTRACKS TRAFFIC RANK: #248
WRITTEN 7/28/97, REVISED 9/4/06
McNeely
McNeely
Vertigo: (Bernard Herrmann) It's painful to imagine nowadays how Alfred Hitchcock's Vertigo could have spun past critics and audiences in 1958 with neither group realizing the dizzying success of every aspect of the picture. Based loosely on the myth of "Tristan and Isolde," Vertigo contained all the typical plot twists, identity crises, and blends of beautiful and psychotic imagery that made Hitchcock into a master. It also featured the necessary pairing of Jimmy Stewart and Kim Novak, sharing almost an equal amount of screen time with the city of San Francisco, which serves as almost a character of its own. Among other techniques best employed by Hitchcock for Vertigo included the revelation of a plot twist to only audience, the inclusion of nightmarish animation, and the integral role for Bernard Herrmann's score. It's difficult to assess just how well Herrmann's music for Vertigo (the fourth, and by far the best collaboration between director and composer at the time) would stand on its own without the stunning merits of the film's other production qualities. Over the years, however, Vertigo has been established as among Herrmann's very best scores, and is often identified as the pinnacle of the famous collaboration. Perhaps by no coincidence, Vertigo is one of the few Herrmann scores for a Hitchcock film that is highly developed in its romantic themes and motifs. It is thus one of Herrmann's more listenable scores on album, with a love theme so recognizable that it stands as a worthy identity to represent Herrmann's larger body of work across all genres. Vertigo is a highly structured score in a modern sense, utilizing its thematic and rhythmic ideas in ways that were largely beyond their time. And while he does this, Herrmann also offers several trademark horror techniques in his instrumentation that fans would come to adore in future projects. In short, Vertigo is the complete package.

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VIEWER RATINGS
1,844 TOTAL VOTES
Average: 4.17 Stars
***** 1,049 5 Stars
**** 397 4 Stars
*** 179 3 Stars
** 112 2 Stars
* 107 1 Stars
  (View results for all titles)

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COMMENTS
1 TOTAL COMMENTS
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Vertigo Formula
Bruno Costa - January 9, 2011, at 4:09 a.m.
1 comment  (883 views)
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Track Listings Icon
TRACK LISTINGS AND AUDIO
Audio Samples   ▼
1990 Mercury Tracks   ▼Total Time: 33:51
• 1. Vertigo Prelude and Rooftop (4:34)
• 2. Madeleine and Carlotta's Portrait (3:10)
• 3. The Beach (3:28)
• 4. Farewell and the Tower (6:52)
• 5. The Nightmare and Dawn (3:28)
• 6. Love Music (5:02)
• 7. The Necklace and the Return and Finale (7:03)
Varèse Re-Recording Tracks   ▼Total Time: 36:22
Varèse Original Tracks   ▼Total Time: 64:12

Notes Icon
NOTES AND QUOTES
The insert notes on all three albums are in great depth. The 1996 Varèse re-recording album contains the most detailed commentary about each cue, as well as a wealth of photos taken from the recording sessions.
Copyright © 1997-2015, Filmtracks Publications. All rights reserved.
The reviews and other textual content contained on the filmtracks.com site may not be published, broadcast, rewritten
or redistributed without the prior written authority of Christian Clemmensen at Filmtracks Publications. All artwork and sound clips from Vertigo are Copyright © 1996, Mercury/Philips, Varèse Sarabande, Varèse Sarabande and cannot be redistributed without the label's expressed written consent. Page created 7/28/97 and last updated 9/4/06.
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