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The star-system was pronounced dead by almost everyone, but as of the moment of writing everyone is talking about Liza Minnelli in Cabaret and she made the covers of Time and Newsweek simultaneously. Contrast the …

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The Lady Vanishes – Alfred Hitchcock

Submitted by on November 4, 2010 – 4:13 pmNo Comment

Iris’ story receives some support, however, when Margaret, hoping to force Todhunter into marrying her after she divorces her husband, admits that she has seen Miss Froy. Jubilantly, Iris tells Dr. Hartz that someone else has seen Miss Froy,’ but when she returns to her compartment a woman dressed in Miss Froy’s clothes is occupying Miss Froy’s seat. The woman announces that she is Madame Kummer (Josephine Wilson) and has been in the compartment throughout the journey. Her story is corroborated by the other occupants, and Iris, dazed and confused, appears to be convinced after Dr. Hartz explains to her that her subconscious has substituted Miss Froy’s face for that of Madame Kummer.

Still beset by doubt, however, Iris asks Gilbert to take her to the dining car for some tea; there, she sees Miss Froy’s name still visible on the steamy window. Her discovery is underscored by a startling blast from the train whistle just before the train hurtles through a tunnel, obliterating the name. Hysterically, Iris appeals to the other passengers to stop the train and search it for Miss Froy, but they stare unresponsively at her. Desperate, Iris wrenches free from Gilbert and Dr. Hartz and pulls the emergency cord, stopping the train just before she faints. When she regains consciousness, Dr. Hartz is trying to calm her, but she obstinately holds to her belief that Miss Froy is aboard the train. Just as Gilbert is becoming more skeptical of her story, the cook throws some kitchen garbage out of the train window. For a brief moment, isolated in a close-up, a label from a packet of herbal tea sticks to the window and is seen by Gilbert.

Now fully persuaded of the truth of Iris’ story, Gilbert helps her search the train and finds, in the baggage car, Miss Froy’s spectacles in the paraphernalia of a magician.Suddenly the magician appears and tries to take back the spectacles. He and Gilbert struggle until Iris hits the magician over the head with a bottle, knocking him unconscious. Quickly, they bundle the man into a trunk, but just as quickly open it again since the magician still holds the spectacles. However, they find that he has disappeared through the false bottom of the trunk, taking with him the only evidence of Miss Froy’s presence on the train.

A fantastic idea now occurs to Gilbert: what if the bandaged patient is really Miss Froy? Iris then recalls noticing that the nun was wearing high heels, and they return to Dr. Hartz’s compartment to verify their wild premise. Before they can unwrap the bandages, however, Hartz appears, and Iris tells him of their suspicions. He persuades them to meet him for a drink in the dining car where they can discuss the matter more fully. After they have had their drinks he takes them back to his compartment, informing them that he has had the nun drug their drinks. He then reveals that the “patient” is indeed Miss Froy and that she will soon be removed at the next stop where he will operate on her, unsuccessfully.

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