ElPaso

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  1. What other aspects of battle of the sexes do you see indicated in this clip or in the film Top Hat? What stood out to me was Ginger Rogers wearing a hat instead of Fred Astaire so that posed a visible sign of a battle of the sexes like she is saying “I’m the leader and I’m confident”. The other visible sign is Ginger wearing a riding outfit. Why didn’t they choose a pantsuit? Again Ginger is saying “I’m riding my own horse and I ride out my destiny and make my own path”. How does this film distinguish itself from other Depression era musicals we have watched or discussed this week? This film distinguishes itself from the other musicals as a by product of the earlier musicals. These musicals just get better and better. In MacDonald and Eddy the focus was on the singing. Now a brand has been formed! Ginger and Fred! A winning combination that is used for the next big musical and the next big musical. I believe Garland and Rooney also had the winning combination that appealed to the masses. We are starting to see the emergence of Hollywood stars. What possible reasons might there be for the changes in roles between men and women depicted in these screwball comedy musicals that distinguish themselves from earlier musicals in the 1930s? Men and women were changing in the 1920’s and 1930’s and the societal boundaries were constantly tested. Women used to have long hair and then women started cutting their hair super short to their ears. How scandalous! Women and men used to dance prim and proper. Dancing very energetically and fast with jazz sounds was considered very wreck less and flapper dance moves like the Charleston and the Lindy Hop were the rage. Women were no longer wearing corsets because they liked their Flapper dresses flapping (haha) and shorter. The 1920’s and the 1930’s were a time of letting loose and having fun and living for the day. Not everyone lived this way but when it’s portrayed in the movies I’m sure some people yearned for that life to have choices and to have fun.
  2. With Powell the dancing is part of the music for example she is creative with her steps with the music. Powell weaves a thread between the dancing and the music and she echos it with the drums, the horns, the hand clapping and the cymbals. She is gives careful thought to interweave both arts. She ties it up with a beautiful bow when those cannons go off and she salutes. With Ruby she demonstrates a dance trooper. I've got this break and I'm going to learn these steps! She is an average person learning to dance not a trained dancer like Powell. Ruby also uses her hand motions to describe the lyrics. The emphasis is on the tapping. The music even pauses or is quiet to highlight the tapping. Ruby also has a cast of dancers that help her tell the story. She isn't the center of attention. If I had to choose I prefer Powell
  3. This is a clever scene and while unpacking it this clip says a lot in just a few minutes. It's clever because of the use of French which is considered a sophisticated language so as a viewer I don't know what's going on but the few words in English helps me understand the situation. Again we see the rich people living the good life because they don't have to work so they get to play! It's interesting if the wife played this scene per suggestion of Chevalier? Maybe they talked about what would happen if the husband was to follow them or catch them in the act. The use of sound especially the gun shot was evident when in the silent era it would have been a slide (the original Power Point haha!) saying "I'm shot!".
  4. What do you notice about the interaction between the characters in these two scenes? Please give specific examples. There is the male who pursues and is not ashamed to say a different girls name to his song and the female who barely notices and yet flirts with him in a teasing way in clip #1. In clip #2 she tries to make some money and is unable to get the attention of the people in the bar and though she gives her best try she knows it is futile. Then “he” comes in and she is so embarrassed and wanting to disappear and hide. If you have seen either or both of these actors in other films or television shows, please share your perceptions about them. Yes in the movie Sweethearts, Maytime and Bitter Sweet. I can see why even today if the formula works WORK IT! It is obvious the chemistry these two had for each other and the camera. What do these clips tell you about the male/female relationships as they are depicted in the films during this era? What norms might you expect are supported under the Hollywood Film Code? These clips show how good girls are those who will get married and have children and live respectable lives. If you are the “bad” girl you work in the bars till your looks are faded living paycheck to paycheck. The Hollywood Film Code always rewarded those who were “good and respectful”. I remember the movie Lydia with Merle Oberon and Joseph Cotton how Lydia has a love affair with Allan Marshall and he does a wham bam thank you mam and Joseph Cotton wanted to marry her. She tells him no because I must pay for my sin. The Hollywood Film Code always made sure that “bad” people paid the price. In the movie Pretty Woman why couldn’t a prostitute marry a rich handsome trick. Times sure have changed!
  5. 1. Do you agree that the clip exhibits a brighter perspective of life than might be realistic? Why or why not? This clip is realistic for those who live the good rich life or work for those who live the rich life. Who doesn't seek to be a bellman at a fancy expensive hotel even today? Who doesn't enjoy going to the theater in your ball gown and jewels? Or sit in the VIP section today? It may be over the top but that's the movies for you it's not a documentary film on the Depression. 2. What themes or approaches might you anticipate from this clip in other Depression era musicals? The theme is "Get Famous, Get Rich, Get on Follies". I don't blame these young men and especially young women who flocked to be in the movies. Imagine the thoughts after seeing a movie like The Broadway Melody? I want to be a dancer! I want to act! I want to sing! It's better pay than sticking around here in this sad town and who knows maybe I can be a Hollywood Star! And we have all seen the musicals like with Judy Garland and Andy Rooney where the number of people in the cast is numerous! And isn't this theme still relevant in 2018? As a retired high school educator what is the number one career students claim? YouTube Star! 3. Since this is a musical that was made after the motion picture code was enforced, how might you imagine it might have been filmed or scripted differently if it had been pre-code? Give specific examples. Miss Held would have worn a skimpy outfit revealing more skin. In the dressing room scene she would have maybe tightened her stockings or garter belt or sat down very cat-like and take off her shoes.
  6. My all time favorite is Singing in the Rain! Here are my other favorites I love to watch: Night and Day, Three Little Words, Till the Clouds Roll By, Calamity Jane, Love Me or Leave Me, Blue Skies, The Jolson Story, The Great Ziegfeld, Romance On the High Seas, The Harvey Girls, White Christmas, Good News, A Star is Born, The Dolly Sisters, For Me and My Gal, Show Boat, Strike Up the Band, Easter Parade, On the Town, Babes in Arms, In the Good Old Summertime, On Moonlight Bay, Summer Stock...WOW! There are so many!
  7. ElPaso

    Jane Wyatt

    Just heard Jane Wyatt died...Hope TCM shows some of her movies...Imagine living until 96 and dying of natural causes...
  8. ElPaso

    June Allyson Dead at 88

    I just heard the news...I said a little prayer for her and her family...One of my favorite movies with her and Van Johnson was Barbary Coast..How can we forget her in Little Women...She was a sweetie

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