ClayKurei28

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  1. The performance here felt sweet and gentle and lets you see the honesty and affection she expresses in how she’s embarrassed to admit in her feelings for him, and dealing with people differently. Having a much theatrical approach with much charge and full of energy as if it’s very overtly forced without the intimacy and soft side to be appreciated. They do have a fondness towards each other, but they don’t know if they’re meant for each other. It’s not until the song where her singing that Nicky comes to understand her more and both are willing to learn more about each other if they want to make their relationship work a bit. It’s a long shot as it is common in the 30s through 50s musicals where less cuts are used and are wide to focus on the singing to then rotate to another angle to have a two person shot of her at the top stairs and Nicky watching her from a distance. It’s moved smoothly and gentle to watch her sing.
  2. Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxy films were what came into mind when using rock music in a Cassette mix Peter Quill's mother gave to him when he was young. It plays a big role like it represents his mother when he was taken away from Earth to Space where he's a bounty hunter raised by Yondu and he would play the songs that fit into whatever mood he's going through or an action scene and then teaming up with Gamora, Drax, Groot, and Rocket Racoon to form the Guardians. The opening scene usually has a dance number like Quill going to find an orb through a dark planet cave that seems gloomy yet decides to dance through it while the opening credits play. Then in the sequel, Groot plays a song from Quill's cassette that makes him dance while the bounty hunter battle against a monster plays like contrasting the action to up the interests. Sometimes other characters would play Quill's cassette like in Vol. 2 when Rocket plays the song "Southern Nights" by Glenn Campbell and hums to it while fixing up the ship, but then Yondu's gang tries to ambush him. So he sets up booby traps and the song transitions from a cassette sounding low quality to a regular 5.1 Surround Sound when the action kicks into full gear.
  3. I never seen Gaslight, but I do recall Cukor’s other film A Star is Born which I’ve seen. Both films have similar themes of a man helping a lady become big, yet what contrast is that ASiB has Norman losing his fame slowly, but in MFL, Higgins is still his own self just to happy accompanied by Eliza now a fully grown lady than a street lady. The camera angles are more wide to let us see their conversations without the close up of the highlights of their emotions. A Star is Born and My Fair Lady have naturalistic lighting without anything fancy to light up the room in the night. Eliza seems upset now that she went through the transformation phase despite being glad to be out of the poverty environement. The way the scene is shot and the lighting of her emotions transitioning naturally shows some breathing room and focus. Even Higgins doesn’t seem to understand her concerns of what to do with her rich personality as they banter on. Eliza shows some affection towards him and wishes he returns hers. But he remains her teacher and usually brushes off her concerns as just short-term subjective petty complaints to move on from as any mistake and concerns are okay to solve. The body language showcases superiority in which Eliza is crutch a bit and slumps on the red long chair to let out her feelings. While Higgins still standing up refined and stern. Plus the way Eliza tries to claw him and standing taller than him, but pushes her arms to the chair. The way Higgins describe Eliza as creature or insect adds to him treating her like a guinea pig.
  4. I noticed that the male characters show more wide of traits and personalities in which The Music Man has the salesman doing all the convincing and playing around with the fears of youth corruption but to then give them a selling point where he’s just stating his opinion with honesty than being aggressive. Victor and Victoria shows a male character having an authentic performance as a gay man without feeling one-note. Generally, you see more of them being less alpha and more beta on being respectful and open to conversations of subjects difficult to explore. He happens to be much versatile of how he approaches to these roles and ways to hook you into his persuasion and generosity. He cares about others and their personal issues and do what’s best for them. And he can be honest if others disagree with his viewpoint and isn’t afraid of those. I never seen the rest of his works, so I have no answer to make here.
  5. The scene looks backwards when the staging has kids involved standing in the background while the kid performer does her act. The people are walking around the stage while the performance is going on, but it’s clear that it’s just a rehearsal where you see the audition and criticism play out. What seems like a look into vaudeville having a more lively and family-friendly atmosphere common in the 1930s musicals, is actually a different viewpoint where it’s more brash, mean-spirited, and burlesque even on the kid range. It’s transition from the previous musicals was meant to add in the realism than the fantasy to see what show business is like that can be cut throating and stressful than how they used to portray to be relevant in the 60s when musicals are slowly losing interests. Mama Rose has an assertive personality, so her entrance went full force to being a supporter to the girl’s performance. She barges in to compromise and shout orders on the stage director and crew and the producer to convince them that she makes a worthwhile performer than the birthday balloon girl for her looks. She makes it clear that she knows her game and skills and expects them to judge the audition based on merit and performance than just looks. The song has some sexual innuendo or double entendre lyrics describing the singer as a stripper attracting the male audience. For a girl to sing it seem to be not acceptable today for inappropriate reasons. As stated in the first question, it has a lot going that doesn’t feel like an actual performance as it’s meant to see how an actual rehearsal or audition would play out then a much linear ideal practice as if everything’s going swell all the time with minor differences.
  6. I believe it didn’t need to because the ending ballet feels more like a dream in Kelly reminiscing a what if scenario of him getting what he wants like Paris lifestyle and Caron as their matchup. The whole film before it was grounded that way to balance out the realism and slightly exaggerative portions of Paris. Though the setting isn’t shot in Paris, its sound stage or crafted buildings playing as Paris have decorated and stylized features around it to show off the best of Paris and its believability for Kelly’s character to live in and go through in his conflict as a struggling artist wanting more after WWII. He doesn’t act unlikable for no reason as he does have likability around Paris to not feel as much cynicism. He has his morning walk greeting artists with kindness and respect, and as another example later from this scene, entertains the kids with joy and happiness. He’s full of life in some parts. And when he becomes unlikable, it’s for a reason because he doesn’t like taking criticism from a non-artist enthusiast like a third-year college student who attempts to speak French on him. He doesn’t appreciate her when she forces through to express her opinion and act like she knows it better than him. He admits too that he doesn’t like compliments on both positive and negative (positive making him not feel better because it doesn’t further him to do better in his art as just staying the same or bland, and negative would bother him if taken that they don’t understand his own style or execution). He only opens up on the constructive criticism (maybe) when a rich lady appears and is more respectful on asking permission to look at his work. Though he is a little rude when it comes to that encounter, he allows as he accepted her respect.
  7. The pre-dance movements have O’Connor and Kelly make gestures and action in sync in ways not a lot of normal people would move. They’re both walking to the beat and messing around with the professor with slight difference. O’Connor would be the Beta Male making faces and comedic timing while Kelly being his usual Alpha Male self would lead the way to cause mischief and calamity to up the boredom of the speech lessons. Their operatic singing blends in musically and up to the point where they are on the piano and bang on it with musicality until segueing to the actual dance movements where they’re on sync or showing off their solos for a brief time. He’s certainly a contrast to the two lively and non-apologetic singing and dancing men of their generation. He would be questioning like why are they suddenly dancing around, or living in a different world than our own reality where it isn’t impossible. He’s more stern and wants to go according to plan, yet whenever things go out of the norm, he would be confused and lost and gave in when O’Connor and Kelly make him a dummy. All men are at their own company helping each other out in their speech practices in male conformity. And they dress with suits and vest. Yet they contrast obviously as the professor is a straight man with grounded and logical thinking on how life should go for himself and others to expect to follow. O’Connor is the comic relief best friend to follow along with the Alpha male, Kelly. Kelly is the leader with strength, courage, and passion for life and entertaining others for joy. Their dancing is masculine in showing off their moves with athletic styles than a more sophisticated move common in the 1930s.
  8. Her character falls in the middle because she plays both masculine and feminine roles with the former leaned in the first half to the latter at the last half. I do see that she goes by Calamity Jane to try and fit in with the men who love adventure and action the great wild west and also sustain her independent thinking of being strong and proactive in the way she wants her life to be. But later on, she tries out the feminine side to see what it’s like for men to expect the support, but doesn’t let go of his masculine identity (still wearing the long pants) to retain her true self in some way. So it’s a balance for her to get what she wants or need to conform with the society’s gender roles expectations at that time. Overall, we see a different kind of woman not as much explored in the 50s films that portray women. I haven’t seen much of her films, but I do know my mom is a big Doris Day fan when she was young watching her films in the Philippines, so all I know from her is that she took on roles and improved her skills in shaping her own identity and strength, and also have a good laugh from her comedic moments. I know her more from her singing in the albums or iTunes I’ve bought. So I have no further comment on her acting unless I go watch them later on. I don’t think it detracts from her character because she doesn’t go full on traditional feminine as she still retains some part of her adventurous and strength in being true to herself. Her being a little nice and generous to others adds to her optimism of enjoying life to her fullest.
  9. They include each other than to let one be the spotlight. They sing as if they’re collaborating on an idea that can work out. Specifically on helping Fred Astaire’s Tony on his comeback on stage as it wouldn’t be possible without their help. Earlier films often puts one over the other in each performance. Despite being in the stage meant for a sophisticated dress up, they’re dressed casually of its time, Astaire and Levant’s suits being colored dark and grey, Fabray’s 50s style square pattern dress, and Buchanan’s director style suit as commonly worn for stage directors during that time. They don’t let their appearance get in the way of being a team and cooperate. This is a fun team-player song about the realities and joy of entertainment where any idea and work at a grander scale takes more than one person to make it a reality. Common details of them singing each verse on elements they pitch to each other, and references to previous works that make it possible (Cohan as a nod to Yankee Doodle Dandy). Also the part when Levant walks out of their company to let them do their time steps after Astaire gives him his hankerchief to take a break. Levant then throws it and they all playfully catch and throw it and the rest do their acts as a team.
  10. The scene shows Petunia in a sigh of relief that Joe is recovering from a shot wound and that her love to him is as strong as ever. The transition shows that she is feeling a little more happier and in good state on doing the housework with the mindset that Joe is still alive and well, and yet she has to do all the work for him in the meanitme. It shows that their promise and unity are passionate in living through their lives no matter what happens. It would have the lyrics change to have her child's name fit in and scenes shot with her child being sick, but the themes of love and support that everything's going to be fine would be the same (though in a mother-son love context than romantic). The film makes it unique from the previous black films that were leaning towards racial stereotypes and punchlines despite the crews' wishes. While it still has some element of stereotypes that might not fare well today, the rest that make the majority of it happen to focus on in-depth black characters moving the story and conflict with musical numbers. Though it was made by the white crew as what is was in the available pool at that time, they do have good intentions to treat the film as essential in a unity goal to deal with social themes and issues when segregation was still a thing as well as the army during WWII. These performers gave it their all and the demand for a good black musical film for the moviegoers of that time did pay off that also helped start up the Freed Unit series of films.
  11. The scene is staged in a way Shirley has dominance over Dennis including the song implying that he is destined to be in love with her. The staging plays out as Dennis walks out to the hallway casually with his baseball as it’s a men’s interests, but then Shirley shows up and blocks his way. The camera at slightly medium shot follows every move they make to then dolly back as the chase happens towards the bleachers, the stopping point where the song begins has a visual metaphor of Dennis stopping at the entrance with squares over him like he’s trapped by Shirley outside within the bleachers in the background. Then the characters movement like when she walks and leans towards him at extremes shows Dennis getting scared of her assertive force. Even the lyrics points out how many tries he would do to run away but fail. The refrain part where the camera switches from body shot to medium close up shows Dennis entrapped by Shirley taunting him and his shyness. And also the characters mostly walk towards the beat of the song based on the pre-recording steps made in post-production by Blanche Sewell. The framing of Sinatra and Garrett has the bleachers frame them in symmetry and entrapment. Them running past the billboard “From Mansion to Cottage” highlights the fate of them going from rich backgrounds to settle in a simple lifestyle possibly from dating to marriage, to start a family. The stairs from bottom to top to then top and bottom would look like the high point in the song where Sinatra finally sings about fate giving in after resisting at first. The music would at first sound like the typical background music to segue to the next dialogue scene, with Garrett appearing towards Sinatra. But with the beats of steps, slowly accelerating to a chase scene towards a crane shot of them going to the bleachers and the music swelling to the high point to then make us realize that this is the next number to anticipate in Garrett’s comedic dominance over Sinatra in a charming way.
  12. Obviously The Wizard of Oz from reairings during the 90s and VHS watching when I was young. I didn’t know much of Garland and was mostly focused on the characters from the movie and the book (though I haven’t read the book at that time). Her portrayal of Dorothy was lively and full of ambition to longing for something unique through her Kansas farm and then swept into a magical land from the tornado to get the adventure of her life and through her kindness and strong traits of helping others and herself to get back home. As a child, I see her as an amazing singer and a kind and generous girl wanting to do everything she can to make others feel hopeful and for her to return home with the support. I think from where I’m coming from, the millennial and Gen. X folks mostly remember Judy Garland as Dorothy from the 80s and 90s on reruns and VHS (given that it’s a fantasy film that’s added with the Disney animated films from 1930s to now), and in that has been discussed and beloved by the young generation for her character, songs, and timeless themes and moments that are relevant in today’s pop culture fandom activities including memes, YouTube essay analysis videos, Comic Con panels for trivia, and parodies recently. So they don’t know much of her outside of The Wizard of Oz as they’re more into geeky, fantasy type films, and only those from the 30s and the cinephiles of then and now would then find out more of her career outside of The Wizard of Oz in films that shape her ambitions, variety of acting choices, singing, and later peaks and valleys behind the scenes. I’ve seen her clips multiple times before doing this course, and was even to this day, impressed by her maturity from The Wizard of Oz’s childlike optimistic girl wanting adventure, to a ambitious proactive and scene stealing woman wanting to develop her triple threat qualities to show off to the audience and that’s with her pairings with Fred Astaire, Gene Kelly, and other leading men at that time that helped build her way up to be amongst the best actresses of that time. So it’s like how when I grow up that I see more of what actors of those periods and what they were up to past The Wizard of Oz that I never knew she had some strong qualities of acting, singing, and dancing that open the doors for her that I have the upmost respect and admiration for her journey. A Star is Born given that I’m well aware of her transitional period of her taking drugs and having to deal with the sexism behind the scenes. But in this film, it was meant to be her comeback that she eventually got where she takes on her maturity and execution of her singing and performances to new directions, from dramatic to hopeful, and lively through hardships and joy. Another one I can think of is Meet Me in St. Louis (though I haven’t seen all of it yet), which I believe has the song: “Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas”. I’ve only first heard it from Frank Sinatra during Christmas when I was young, and now knowing where it first came from, it does resonate in how Judy sings it in a way that makes you feel sad and hopeful at the same time given that the film I believe deals with family issues blending drama and comedy. But that’s enough for me to check out later.
  13. There were paintings of past US Presidents as Cohan is walking up the stairs escorted by the African-American butler to President FDR (in today’s moviegoers’ opinions, the black butler stereotype would not fit well with how African American roles were treated back then). In the President’s room, we see a bunch of ships FDR collected. And in the flashback, the parade has a bunch of American flags hanged and waved by people, and the feel is lively and in great spirit for their country in how far they’ve come through since the Declaration of Independence from Britain in 1776 to its present timeframe in the 1910s-1940s. The butler pointed out that he was also a valet to Teddy Roosevelt and happens to get a seat by him to see Cohan’s musical: George Washington Jr. and describes him singing and dancing about the US flag that he still liked the song to this day. FDR states to Cohan that his patriotic musical shows makes him know a lot about the American spirit even though Cohan denies that as he’s not perfect. FDR also boast on his Irish-American background in carrying their love of their country like a flag right out in the open. In a way, it’s like how Cohan’s Irish background signifies the roots of bringing the Irish and other European cultural elements to America to flourish and transform into its own identity. Cohan remarks on his own traits and characteristics inherited from his father who went to the Civil War when he was 13, showcasing his bravery and courage despite being young. If the movie were to open in the Providence Parade scene, it would feel like it’s a “propaganda” type film with all of the Flags signifying the need to love their country without narration or background. The beginning scene with FDR apparently works better here because despite a few irks, it does showcase how far Cohan has gone, making quips of his achievements and honest criticism that he’s not a very perfect man, and is still willing to tell the President his backstory in his peaks and valleys and his love for America in need of a morale. It would be seen as a "patriotic" film in seeing the backstory of Cohan.
  14. While I enjoyed both Astaire and Rogers dancing as a compliment through the rainy day, I actually don't see much of the battle of the sexes in how the scene was set up. It's mostly Fred's character leading the way for Ginger's character to engage in his wooing which is what it was at that time for men and women's roles before diverse gender roles would play out now. She mostly feels shy during the song number and has to determine if he's a good fit through his singing and dancing than to be negative and annoyed by his intended generosity when her day just wasn't going the way she planned. But that being said, I think the battle of the sexes plays out on their dance routine as it can be interpreted as its stand alone routine (which most song and dance numbers of that time are made that way whether it connects to the plot or not). The dance moves do compliment each other and sometimes get into it to see if they can mimic the steps correctly, or out do one another. And it has subtle pointers like Ginger's men type fashion, wearing a horse rider clothes with long pants without a dress common in everyday wearing in the 30s. But it's a special case given that she has some interests in horseback riding where she would show that any woman can be into these activities usually popular by men in that time. And her horseback suit does mimic similar with Fred's regular suit in how she's not just a supporting type person and has her own strong attitude or something like that. But even then, they're just their own traditional roles but still for the time, they do balance their skills and roles in some parts that make it unique. Previous musical films were mostly on the backstage setting where a variety of performances were staged and usually on point used as like a pausing point in between the stories for the most part. This film focuses on the story with song and dance numbers driving up the progression of the story and character development with occasional pauses in a stage performance or Busby Berkeley like spectacular. The couples dance are play out equally, unlike a male or female dancer leading more often or one just dancing around one's love interest. Genres like romance and screwball were meshed together that involves a new trend of romantic misunderstandings of who is which love interest, the "will they, won't they?" moments, or also transformed tropes that would be later used in modern romantic comedy films. I think I already brought up Ginger's horseback suit in the first question, but to expand on it, the 30s screwball comedy looked into some realistic situations of the Great Depression for regular middle class citizens where men are having a hard time finding work, and women taking on jobs or positions usually owned by men. They take inspiration from them, but still warp them into a fantasy high middle to rich class setting to stick to the goal of entertaining people looking to escape from reality. So it makes sense to have women take on progressive roles of having traits of proactive and independent senses (as evident in Ginger Rogers slowly developing her acting skills from comedy to eventually dramatic roles in the 40s and 50s), while men would have traits of clumsiness or vulnerability than just a strong man saving the day. Though men still have masculinity to court the love interest or save the day, and women still have feminine traits to be supportive and dependent in this timeframe, the unique traits written for them to have certain equal characteristics make them have a sense of relatability.
  15. I noticed that the way Lubitsch staged the scene in full body to establish the scene, close ups of moments subtly that can be seen as sly wit, and use of French without subtitles, plus the main lead being generous to ease the situation with her husband at least shows that he has gone through in the past better than her husband, and can easily debunk the exaggeration of his deeds speculated. French is used in the majority of the scene without subs to allow us to see their body staging and expressions visually effectively. If it were to use English, it would be a bit half and half in the visuals and dialogue execution. Also the gun sound made it effective to fool you thinking that she’s dead, but when used the second time, it was revealed that it had “no buwelts” (insert Elmer Fudd reference), and the lady has a comedic glaring look on her husband for being foolish to believe in her fake death. The comedy aspect would play out in the majority of great depression era films and as what screwball comedies would do. And add a glimmer of hope and optimism from the main characters. The setting of it being a rich environment would be like that for the films of that time.

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