Monday, 22 January 2018

Bell, Book and Candle

I've seen a lot of James Stewart films over the years, but this one seems to have passed me by until now. I saw it mentioned in a blog about classic films (I forget which one), thought it looked interesting, and sent off for it - and what great fun it is!
James Stewart had already starred alongside Kim Novak earlier in 1958, in Vertigo - this film is a lot more light hearted, with Kim Novak playing a witch who decides to seduce the batchelor who lives upstairs - James Stewart. To add interest, he's about to marry someone she detested at college. The film also has good roles for Elsa Lanchester as Kim Novak's auntie who lives upstairs (also a witch), Hermoine Gingold (another witch) and Jack Lemmon (Kim Novak's brother, and a warlock).
James Stewart is a publisher, so a further complication to the plot is a writer who is writing a book about the magical scene in Manhattan, aided and abetted by Jack Lemmon.
And then there's Pyewacket, the Siamese cat who assists with Kim Novak's magic - and has to do some pretty complicated things onscreen (apparently there were several cats in the role).
The cinematography is by James Wong Howe, so the film always looks gorgeous.
It's fairly obvious that James Stewart and Kim Novak are having hot sex from their very first encounter, but the only onscreen indication of this is a variety of passionate and fully clothed kisses, and one scene where they are sitting together on a couch, fully clothed, with their bare feet entwined.

No comments:

Post a Comment