Actress Kim Novak once made a name for herself freaking out onscreen in Alfred Hitchcock's Vertigo. These days, she's making a name for herself freaking out in the pages of Variety and claiming that a recent movie that used part of the score from the classic thriller has literally raped her. A movie. Literally. Raped. Her. Oh, how embarrassing.
Novak's butthurt centers around the film The Artist, a French award season darling set at the end of the silent movie era. The film uses parts of Bernard Herrmann-composed love theme from Vertigo and credits the composer at the end of the film. In Novak's opinion, this is exactly like being violated, sexually.
Her full page ad in Variety begins,
I WANT TO REPORT A RAPE.
I FEEL AS IF MY BODY-OR, AT LEAST MY BODY OF WORK-HAS BEEN VIOLATED BY THE MOVIE, "THE ARTIST."
She goes on to explain that Bernard Herrmann wrote the score of Vertigo specifically for that film, and that any other use of it is a goddamn violation. While the usage of all caps certainly increases the gravitas of Novak's assertion (because she who types loudest types rightest), groups of people who deal with victims of actual rape aren't so impressed with the ad.
Lynn Blando, CEO of the Rape Crisis Center in San Antonio, put it best when she told Fox News,
When rape is used in a way that overdramatizes a situation that did not include an actual rape it diminishes the suffering of the thousands of men, women and children who have suffered from the crime.
If rape actually were anything like having the soundtrack from an old movie reappropriated, you'd think it would be used as a point of comparison in more college orientation rape seminars. After being told to look left, and then right, terrified freshmen would be informed that they themselves or one of the people they just looked at will at some point be involved in a sexual assault. The presenter would continue that if they, the terrified freshmen, want to know what rape is like, they should imagine being Kim Novak, star of the movie Vertigo, and imagine that 54 years after the film's original release, another film used the same music as part of its score. Imagine how Kim Novak must feel, the presenter will say. That's how rape feels, except it happens in your orifices.
Novak's camp is refusing to apologize for the horribly stupid ad, clarifying in a statement that rape doesn't necessarily happen to one's body; that the spirit can also be raped. And Novak's soul should totally be swabbed for DNA from the movie The Artist, because DNA evidence is really helpful in convicting movies suspected of soul-rape. They do it all the time on Law & Order: Kim Novak's Feelings.