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Spellbound (United Artists 1945, Gregory Peck, Ingrid Bergman)

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Alfred Hitchcock’s psychological mystery Spellbound makes engrossing use of the contemporary fascination with Freudian analysis. It stars Ingrid Bergman as a coolly intellectual analyst who grows to suspect that the new director of the institute (Gregory Peck) is not who he claims to be.

As a bond of love grows between the two, Bergman is torn between her rational fear that Peck may be the murderer of the director they were expecting, and her heart telling her that he’s an innocent man suffering an emotional trauma. As her love opens mental doors for Peck, the experience brings warmth to Bergman’s character.

The typical mystery-story chase sequence is here a search for clues in Peck’s psyche. The production began with producer Selznick’s interest in analysis. It features famous set pieces depicting Peck’s mental state, including a dream sequence designed by surrealist artist, Salvador Dali. The sequence (Dali created material for 22 minutes, nearly all of it cut) was directed by an uncredited William Cameron Menzies.

Academy Award Nominations: 6, including Best Picture; Best Director.

production details
USA | United Artists | 111 minutes | 1945
Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Script: Ben Hecht,

cast
Irving Bacon as Railway Gateman
Regis Toomey as Det. Sgt. Gillespie
Rhonda Fleming as Mary Carmichael
Leo G. Carroll as Dr. Murchison
Ingrid Bergman as Dr. Constance Petersen
Gregory Peck as John Ballantine
Michael Chekhov as Dr. Alexander Brulov
John Emery as Dr. Fleurot
Norman Lloyd as Mr. Garmes
Bill Goodwin as House detective
Steven Geray as Dr. Graff
Donald Curtis as Harry
Art Baker as Det. Lt. Cooley
Paul Harvey as Dr. Hanish
Wallace Ford as Hotel masher

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