News: Watch Clint Eastwood's RICHARD JEWELL, now available streaming and on Blu-ray and DVD!


0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this board.
« previous next »
Pages: [1] Go Down Print
Author Topic: PLAY MISTY FOR ME: Audience Reaction: 1. When Do You Know?  (Read 4804 times)
Matt
Global Moderator
Member Extraordinaire
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 14815



View Profile WWW Email
« on: March 02, 2003, 09:18:35 PM »

At what moment in the film did you first think that Evelyn may be psychotic? When do you think is the first moment that Dave realizes this?
Logged
Christopher
Member Extraordinaire
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 6634



View Profile Email
« Reply #1 on: March 15, 2003, 04:50:31 PM »

The scene when Evelyn brings in the groceries at Dave's house doesn't show her to be psychotic, but it does show that she's not going by their "no strings attached" rule. In a way, that could be the first sign that she could be a little strange, but not psychotic.

Dave probably first realizes their might be something wrong with her when she repeatedly comes back to him regardless of him telling her that it's over. Then, of course, theirs the suicide attempt.

I'd say it becomes the clearest to Dave and the audience alike, when Evelyn attacks Birdie. But I know that's kinda obvious.
Logged
badguy
Newbie
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 36



View Profile Email
« Reply #2 on: March 15, 2003, 05:21:51 PM »

First time Evelyn takes Dave to her house, she’s getting the drinks from the fridge, anybody notice the ice pick in her hand, slashing through the ice?  :o
Watching the film again, having seen it before, I knew what to expect from her later in the film, but I don’t think I ever noticed this before.
Bit of a sinister moment there, but the first hint of her obsession with Dave, for me, comes soon after that, at the fireplace when she says: “I wanted to meet you, I listen to you all the time.”  
Logged
Matt
Global Moderator
Member Extraordinaire
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 14815



View Profile WWW Email
« Reply #3 on: March 16, 2003, 01:55:59 AM »


Bit of a sinister moment there, but the first hint of her obsession with Dave, for me, comes soon after that, at the fireplace when she says: “I wanted to meet you, I listen to you all the time.”  

Yup, that's the first clue and if I was in Dave's shoes, instead of being flattered... I'd have been looking for the exit sign.  Sweet Al had already been teasing him about his "little Misty chick," so we know she's called the station repeatedly, and then he winds up at her apartment with her under false pretenses.  There's no way he should have stuck around.   But, if he left... we wouldn't have a movie.  ;)

As a member of the audience, I think we know before Dave does that Evelyn's psychotic.  There's signs that she's unstable, but I think in his mind.. he just isn't really seeing it as a mental disorder, but maybe that she has a bad temper or that she's just very persistent... otherwise, I can't imagine why he'd sleep with her again after the following instances occur:

Quote
(Outside his house the morning after their second date)

NEIGHBOR:  Hey, people trying to sleep here!

EVELYN:  People trying to talk here.

NEIGHBOR:  How'd you like to tell that to the law?

EVELYN:  How'd you like to go screw yourself?!!!  (honks car horn)

And then, Evelyn appears in Dave's car outside the Sardine Factory.  He tries to get rid of her and she takes his keys and teases him with them.  He tries to wrestle them away from her, chasing her up the sidewalk.  Two men who are leaving the bar see them struggling:

Quote
MAN:  Having some trouble, lady?

DAVE:  Get lost!

EVELYN:  Yeah, get lost @#!holes!!!

In both these instances, Evelyn immediately snaps back to her normal self... almost as if nothing had happened either time.  

I'm trying to remember the first time I'd seen this movie... I think it was the first of these two instances that sent off the big warning signs that she was psychotic, but if not the first scene, definitely by the second.  

My opinion is that it doesn't really occur to Dave that Evelyn has a mental disorder until she shows up at his home in the middle of the night screaming accusations that he has another woman in his bed.  She runs through the house, and when she finds him alone, she apologizes, but he can only stare at her...



That expression says it all.  And Evelyn sees it too and says "Oh God, don't look at me that way, Dave."

Makes me wonder if she's seen anyone look at her that way before.  Within minutes, she's slashed her wrists in his bathroom.  Now, this is just speculation, but maybe this isn't the first time Evelyn's had this problem before, and perhaps seeing that expression in Dave's eyes brings it all home to her that she's right back there again.  In either case... whether she's been in this situation before or not...  this seems to be the moment that he realizes it, and she's aware that he knows, and that's too much for her to take... in her desperation, she gives up hope and attempts suicide.
Logged
badguy
Newbie
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 36



View Profile Email
« Reply #4 on: March 16, 2003, 03:25:31 AM »

Makes me wonder if she's seen anyone look at her that way before.
I've just posted something about this in the other thread, about Evelyn's character, but I'll repeat some of it here. I wonder if (just another guess) Evelyn's father was similar to Dave, maybe he cheated on her mother or maybe he had a lot of girlfriends, and he never paid attention to Evelyn? And when she wanted attention, he shouted at her, like Dave does. In that case, I think slashing her wrists was more a desperate attempt to get Dave's attention, rather than a suicide attempt. What do you think?  :-\


 
Logged
Matt
Global Moderator
Member Extraordinaire
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 14815



View Profile WWW Email
« Reply #5 on: March 16, 2003, 06:26:54 AM »

I've wondered that too... the doctor said the cuts were only superficial, so I've always thought that she may have done it just to try to keep Dave sympathetic to her or as a more desperate way to manipulate herself back into Dave's life.   It's definitely a possibility.   But, then I wonder if that were the case if she would have really locked the door.  

Evelyn's obsession toward Dave is so strong that she's lost complete sense of her own self.   And at that moment... she felt she lost him.  So it's possible the suicide attempt was a genuine one.   And there's the other factor... what if it was genuine, but done for revenge?  As she later says to David "Oh I don't worry about me, I worry about you.  Girl commits suicide in disc jockey's home... doesn't look too good on you." (quoting from memory).  Perhaps her motivation was to make him pay the consequences for not loving her... at the ultimate price to herself.

The film never gives us the answer, leaving it open for all of us to wonder about.    I'd be interested in hearing more opinions from others here about that scene and what they think of it.
Logged
bcm
Full Member
***
Offline Offline

Posts: 209


Not all those who wander are lost


View Profile Email
« Reply #6 on: March 16, 2003, 11:37:07 AM »

I definitely believe that she never really wanted to kill herself. The cuts were superficial, that's one point. And they are in the wrong direction. The big blood vessels come down the arm, they don't cross it (think of nurses taking your pulse!). So, if you really want to bleed to death, you better cut deep, and in the other direction. Doing it the way Evelyn does it is only for people who want to get attention. Now, other, psychological question, how many suicide attemps are a desperate try to get attention? I am not psychologist, but I would bet a lot, if not all!! It's one way of focusing Dave's attention on her, and that's what she wants. This behaviour is well known of children as well. If they don't get love, they'll try to get your attention in any other way, forcing you to notice them. And again, it works for Evelyn. He becomes really kind, takes care of her.
 
   The first time I saw the film ( a few days ago ;)), I noticed something was really wrong with Evelyn in the scene Matt quotes, when a neighbour is asking for silence. She reacts in a way no "normal" person would. Of course, you get suspcious already  when she brings the groceries. I think most women, no matter how much in love, would never dare to force themselves into the lives of the man of their desires.  ;D
Logged

"He wondered what the man's name was and where he was from; and if he was really evil of heart, or what lies or threats had led him on the long march from his home: and if he would not really rather have stayed there in peace" Sam, TTT, written by JRR Tolkien, 1954
Matt
Global Moderator
Member Extraordinaire
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 14815



View Profile WWW Email
« Reply #7 on: March 16, 2003, 11:51:06 AM »

... how many suicide attemps are a desperate try to get attention? I am not psychologist, but I would bet a lot, if not all!! It's one way of focusing Dave's attention on her, and that's what she wants. This behaviour is well known of children as well. If they don't get love, they'll try to get your attention in any other way, forcing you to notice them. And again, it works for Evelyn. He becomes really kind, takes care of her.

It doesn't take long to commit suicide, and unfortunately, a lot of people who have lost a sense of their self really do want to end it all for a brief moment in their life.  Another thing to take into account is that some people have no clue how to do it.  I've known someone who cut the upper side of her wrists... she didn't know even which side to cut, let alone which way to run the blade or how deep.  

I'm definitely leaning toward it being a manipulative move, but whether she wanted to be successful with it or not... either way hurts Dave... which was most likely one of the main reasons behind it.
« Last Edit: March 16, 2003, 01:01:21 PM by Matt » Logged
Christopher
Member Extraordinaire
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 6634



View Profile Email
« Reply #8 on: March 16, 2003, 04:00:42 PM »

Maybe she did do it for Dave's sympathy.

But, then again, perhaps she did not know the proper way of killing herself.

I think there's enough evidence in this thread to support either idea.
Logged
Matt
Global Moderator
Member Extraordinaire
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 14815



View Profile WWW Email
« Reply #9 on: March 17, 2003, 01:37:03 AM »

*****FATAL ATTRACTION SPOILER BELOW*****
*
*
*
*
*
*
*
*
*
*
*

I'd like to compare the wrist-slashing scenes between Play Misty for Me and Fatal Attraction.  In Misty, Evelyn locks herself in Dave's bathroom.  She runs the water, to make it sound as though she's in there washing up... and quickly slashes her wrists.  Between the water running and the locking of the door, this leaves the audience wondering... DID she want to die?  Or did she just want to manipulate Dave or make him feel some of the pain (through guilt) of what she was feeling?

In Fatal Attraction, Alex slashes her wrists off camera, we don't know where.  But Dan is leaving and she stops him, her hands behind her back.  She speaks to him very kindly, asking if they could part as friends.  He comes over to her and holds her.  She brings her hands to his face and runs her bloodied wrists down his cheeks.  She very obviously wanted him to save her...

Whether or not their intentions were exactly the same... Evelyn's suicide attempt at least gives us, the audience, a little more to wonder about... it just wasn't as obvious.
Logged
bcm
Full Member
***
Offline Offline

Posts: 209


Not all those who wander are lost


View Profile Email
« Reply #10 on: March 17, 2003, 03:43:45 AM »

If Evelyn really wanted to die, she'd not have done it in the bathroom with Dave waiting outside of it. I know she certainly wanted to harm him, so she would  have killed herself at some place where her suicide would be in relation to Dave. But surely not in the bathroom, knowing he was waiting impatiently to drive her home. You don't bleed to death in 5 seconds!

  :) I have to defend my point of view here :D
Logged

"He wondered what the man's name was and where he was from; and if he was really evil of heart, or what lies or threats had led him on the long march from his home: and if he would not really rather have stayed there in peace" Sam, TTT, written by JRR Tolkien, 1954
badguy
Newbie
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 36



View Profile Email
« Reply #11 on: March 17, 2003, 06:37:33 PM »

I think Evelyn would definitely know how to kill herself, if she wanted to. She shows us on several occasions that she is smart (the way she copies Dave's house keys and the way she moves in with Tobie without any suspicion, etc...) and there's plenty of cliffs around Carmel to jump from...so...she would have found a way. Dave was about to drive her home, she could have driven herself off a cliff...so I think slashing the wrists was definitely a cry for attention.

Later on when she tells Dave that a girl committing suicide in his house wouldn't look good, I think it's another manipulative tool, just to keep Dave on his toes, to keep him looking after her, so she doesn't try the "suicide" again!

Sorry Matt, I haven't seen Fatal Attraction since it came out, so I can't really remember much about it...

I was watching the documentary on the "Misty" dvd today, and it's mentioned that the person who wrote the story actually based Evelyn on a real person. I'd love to know more about that woman. And I bet you all the tea in China that she didn't come from a happy family! Guess we'll never really know, but Evelyn certainly is a fascinating character.

And back to that scene, the door being locked, I don't know if they did that deliberately or not, but in a way, it could symbolize the door to Evelyn's past being locked to Dave and to the rest of us. It heightens the mystery.
Logged
Matt
Global Moderator
Member Extraordinaire
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 14815



View Profile WWW Email
« Reply #12 on: March 17, 2003, 07:12:19 PM »

No need to convince me that Evelyn didn't want to kill herself.  I'm with those who believe it was a manipulative move to get Dave to pay more attention to her and to stay with her, and I also think she did it because it would make him hurt at least a little, since she was hurting so much.

But, I'm also willing to see that there's the small possibility that at that moment[/b], after seeing the way he looked at her... she may not have cared whether the suicide attempt was successful or not.  Maybe she thought she lost him and there was no need to go on without him.  If she jumped off a cliff or killed herself at home, there'd be no chance that he could save her.  This way... he might, or he might not... she was willing to take that chance.  So... I see it as not a 100% clear instance where she did it just for attention.   Most likely, but not definitely.
Logged
badguy
Newbie
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 36



View Profile Email
« Reply #13 on: March 18, 2003, 11:31:18 AM »

Quote
Most likely, but not definitely.
Ok, agreed.  :)
Logged
Xichado
Member Extraordinaire
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 808


View Profile WWW Email
« Reply #14 on: March 22, 2003, 03:07:54 PM »

The moment when I realized that Evelyn was psychotic is when she is waiting for Dave outside the Sardine Factory, I believe that’s the third time they see each other and by now it’s clear that she isn’t like the other women that Dave sleeps around with.

I guess the moment when Dave realizes that Evelyn is really psychotic is after she slashed her wrists and she wakes up from her "dream" and asks Dave to hold her. The lost look on Dave’s face says that he just discovered what Evelyn is all about. Then the expression on his eyes changes, it’s a dark and wary look that reveals he knows.


Evelyn's obsession toward Dave is so strong that she's lost complete sense of her own self.   And at that moment... she felt she lost him.  So it's possible the suicide attempt was a genuine one.   And there's the other factor... what if it was genuine, but done for revenge?  As she later says to David "Oh I don't worry about me, I worry about you.  Girl commits suicide in disc jockey's home... doesn't look too good on you." (quoting from memory).  Perhaps her motivation was to make him pay the consequences for not loving her... at the ultimate price to herself.
I think she was trying to say to Dave she could destroy his career, which (so far) seems to be Dave's only stable "affair" and is a career that he is dedicated to. His career takes him away from Evelyn and it comes before her. I think Evelyn tries to emotionally blackmail Dave, either she comes first or his career can be easily destroyed.
Logged

"I'm an idealist. I don't know where I'm going, but I'm on my way." Carl Sandburg
mgk
Member Extraordinaire
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 2113


View Profile Email
« Reply #15 on: April 13, 2003, 08:08:01 PM »

 Thanks, everyone! This thread is now locked.  Please post any additional thoughts you have on this topic in the General Discussion forum.
Logged
Pages: [1] Go Up Print 
 




C L I N T E A S T W O O D . N E T