Staircases. They’re sort of netherworlds, transient spaces we move through in order to get from one world to another, connecting those worlds. They’re spooky. People fall down them. People get thrown down them. They creak. Hitchcock loved them.
Thanks again to everyone who made suggestions. Many excellent titles were left off, It’s A Wonderful Life, Le Jour Se Leve, The Shining among them.
In no particular order.
Sunset Boulevard (Billy Wilder, 1950)
A hack screenwriter (William Holden) writes a screenplay for a former silent-film star (Gloria Swanson) who has faded into Hollywood obscurity in Billy Wilder’s classic backstage melodrama/film noir. – MUBI
Suggested by @cinemaofdreams & @12pt9.
A Matter Of Life And Death (Powell & Pressburger, 1946)
A remarkable fantasy film about Peter Carter, a World War II RAF pilot who is forced to bail out of his crippled plane without a parachute. He wakes up to find he has landed on Earth utterly unharmed…which wasn’t supposed to happen according to the rules of Heaven. – MUBI
@fabricius91 and @harlegator suggested this one.
The Fallen Idol (Carol Reed, 1948)
Elegantly balancing suspense and farce, Carol Reed and Graham Greene’s tale of the fraught relationship between a boy and the beloved butler he suspects of murder is a delightfully macabre thriller of the first order and a visually and verbally dazzling knockout. – MUBI
Nominated by @cherry_red186
A Streetcar Named Desire (Elia Kazan, 1951)
A film adaptation of the famed Tennessee Williams play. Wanting to forget her past and start again, Blance DuBoise moves in with her sister’s family in New Orleans. Her brutish brother-in-law ensures that she doesn’t outrun her past and soon the stage is set for their final confrontation. MUBI.
Suggested by @biblivore.
Gothic (Ken Russell, 1986)
Story of the night that Mary Shelley gave birth to the horror classic “Frankenstein.” Disturbed drug induced games are played and ghost stories are told one rainy night at the mad Lord Byron’s country estate. MUBI
Thanks to @awhitetable
The Spiral Staircase (Robert Siodmak, 1946)
Robert Siodmak’s The Spiral Staircase is a classic Hitchcockian thriller set in a shadow-filled Victorian house. The manor’s mute servant girl, Helen (Dorothy McGuire), is threatened by a murderer on the premises—a killer who targets those burdened by afflictions…. MUBI
Thanks to @aalanester
Suspicion (Alfred Hitchcock, 1941)
A shy young English woman marries a charming gentleman, then begins to suspect him of trying to kill her. MUBI
The Haunting (Robert Wise, 1963)
Hill House has an evil history with tragic accidents, suicide, and human misjudgement. Dr. Markway is a pyschic researcher who assembles a group with histories linked to the paranormal. MUBI
Suggested by @awhitetable and @gloriabb2
Possession (Andrez Zulawski, 1981)
A spiral staircase movie, a never-ending metaphysical game of cat-and-mouse, a moral aspiration to the Heavens, a “spotlight” on God, a scornful detective movie, a horror movie and frightful, high-octane baroque work—Possession is all of that at once. MUBI
Nominated by @grouchomarn
Citizen Kane (Orson Welles, 1941)
Citizen Kane, written, produced, directed and played by Orson Welles, follows the rise and fall of a publishing tycoon. The story is told through the research of a newsreel reporter seeking to solve the mystery of the newspaper magnate’s final dying word: “Rosebud”. MUBI
Suggested by @classicmp and @neroblckschwrz