People might enjoy To Catch a Thief or North by Northwest for the Technicolor thrills, but when it comes Madeleine’s beautiful, phony trances at Podesta Baldocchi and points beyond, this time it’s personal, maybe even religious. In the book, Miguel Pendás recalls the time he spent as a tour guide driving Vertigo-philes around on their “pilgrimage to all the film’s locations” in the Bay area. Meanwhile, Cunningham writes about those sojourners’ rites as categorically different from the “casual ogling of curious film buffs; after all, the cinephilic pilgrimage [(there's that word again!)] is born of love (for the diegetic world of the film),” along with “loss (the apparent absence of that diegetic world within the realm of the real)” and a desire to briefly inhabit that world. 1
Hitch's Missionary Position
From Vertigo's opening, Hitch disrupts his audience's expectations: the opening title sequence starts out in black and white—a motif that's also played out in scenes inside staircases and the bell tower.
While Cunningham makes a good point, I don't think other film fans should be so quickly dismissed. What about those who fly all the way to Iowa to see the “Ghost Players” emerge onto its Field of Dreams for one more pickup game? Something special is going on there, too. Definitely, more could be written about “cinetourism.” As Phoebe S. Kropp wrote elsewhere: "Why do city and state landmark commissions, California and industry historical societies, and community booster organizations overlook, or worse—dismiss—the importance of Vertigo as an artifact of culture and history?" The question could be asked of cinetourism in general. Why aren't more communities cashing in on it?↩