roblevy

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About roblevy

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  • Birthday 10/16/1968

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    St. Louis, MO
  1. What do you notice about the Lubitsch touch? How do the props, the dialogue, and the staging help you understand the character of Alfred (Maurice Chevalier)? The staging is done with great care with the intention of developing the character and also to help connect the audiences with a protagonist via a new technology. he is very precise in his placement of items and in his shot selection. Based on this scene, what are some of the things you notice about the scene’s use of sound? Describe a specific sound or line of dialogue you hear and what you think it adds to the scene’s effectiveness. The sound gets louder or quieter based on how close the actors are from the center of the screen. The sound is all pervasive. I suspect for viewers it was a sensoryThe score also rises and falls with the action in the film. overload. A specific sound is the gunshot near the beginning. It comes after the audiences hear's 'her husband.' What themes or approaches might you anticipate from this clip in other Depression-era musicals? There is a recurring theme of decadence as well as an ongoing theme that women are prizes to be competed for. There is also a sense of escapism in the film.
  2. What other aspects of battle of the sexes do you see indicated in this clip or in the film Top Hat? The men need to work harder to 'get the girl.' There's a or independent spirit to the women in the film. There's a sense of partnership in the dancing seldom seen so prominently on film. The women hold their own with the men in both the dancing and drama. How does this film distinguish itself from other Depression era musicals we have watched or discussed this week? The production value is amped up and overall the production is more high society and a time when people were not doing well. It's also bolder with more clearly developed archetypes. The music is also better developed. the dancing and sound are more sophisticated and daring in execution. The dancing says so much than regular dialogue 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? To keep spirits up from the Depression, to mirror the social times of the era and also to represent the times it was made in. The films are culturally relevant and interesting. I also loved watching Buddy Ebsen dance. As good as he and his co star are, they are matched equally by their counterparts. http://forums.tcm.com/topic/186357-daily-dose-of-delight-4-from-top-hat/#
  3. What do you notice about the interaction between the characters in these two scenes? Please give specific examples. There definitely is a serious chemistry between the characters. However it is one that is being very carefully veiled and cloaked in innuendo and subtlety. When you cast aside the curtain of corny there's some serious heat here. If you have seen either or both of these actors in other films or television shows, please share your perceptions about them. I believe that this is my first real real exposure to them. 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? Male dominated with women being prom and proper and being very morally subdued. There's a sense of captivity with spirit and independence and a sugary idea that love will make everything okay.
  4. Do you agree that the clip exhibits a brighter perspective of life than might be realistic? Why or why not? I do in that it is so over the top and so drought with cheer that it cannot be real. There's a creepiness in how polished and polite everything is about some really disturbing aspects of it. The times were not that rosy and this is almost a balm for that feeling of cultural malaise. What themes or approaches might you anticipate from this clip in other Depression era musicals? Optimism, overcoming fear, the importance of family and friends and hard work. the pervading sense of 'everything is going to be 'ok' 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. The language between the the doorman and Zigfeld would be courser. The women would not be as covered up and been presented as more glamourous and probably objectified. Held may have had more of an independent spirit.
  5. In what ways does this opening scene seem more appropriate to a romantic comedy than a “horror of the apocalypse” film? What do we learn about Melanie (Tippi Hedren) and Mitch (Rod Taylor) in this scene? There is very much a light feel to the opening of the film. it is tricky beucase the audience feels like they are seeing a duple that is very much comfortable in their relationship. Until it all goes bonkers. How does Hitchcock use sound design in this opening sequence? For example, how are the sounds of birds used to create a particular mood and atmosphere? I think he uses the pitch and sound level of the birds to convey both their proximity and their growing numbers,. The sound also escalates in volume so that the viewer feels there are more than what we see. The opening scene contains a famous Hitchcock cameo. Describe the cameo and if you think it has any particular meaning in relation to this scene. I dnt think the cameo has any real actual meaning other than to be cover and maybe distract the viewer, allowing for a bit of a break before things get messy.
  6. Even at the level of the dialogue, this film is playing with the idea that two Hollywood stars are flirting with each other (e.g. the line, "I look vaguely familiar.") How does our pre-existing knowledge of these stars function to create meaning in this scene. It is interesting because you see Grant with sunglasses at the start, as if he is trying to hide who he is, who his identity is. then a she cleans them and puts them away the audience sees him for who he is a star, and to a lesser extent, Roger in the film. As for Saint, she uses every inch of her clever wordplay to underscore he standing as a rising young starlet. Hitch is subconsciously playing with us in having us want to see more of these stars as each of the characters simultaneously wants to learn more of the other. There is minimal action in this scene, so any deviation from the overall pattern of focusing on the faces of the two leads will have increased significance. In that sense, discuss how Hitchcock uses the R.O.T. matchbook as an important piece of acting business (or as a prop) in this scene. the matches help serve as a metaphor for the burning chemistry onscreen. it also is a prop that takes away form all the closeups, heady dialogue and innuendo. it's white color also serves as a nice departure from the colors used in the film. it is a prop that serves as the physical connection between the actors. How is Hitchcock using sound design in this scene? Consider music and other background sounds in your answer. He is using music that sounds like it is form a 1950s era romance drama. it's very light and frothy, while the action onscreen is of an entirely different context. The sound of the train moving is also important because it serves as a mechanism for having viewers know the plot is moving towards a key event. The sound of the train serves as a reminder that the characters are in a confined space where there is no easy escape while it is moving. it also is another nod to Hitch's love of trains.
  7. How would you describe the opening camera shot of this film? What is Hitchcock seeking to establish in this single shot that opens the film? Whose vantage point is being expressed in this shot, given that Jeff has his back to the window? The shot is voyeuristic in nature in that the audience is seeing what is happening. The opening camera shot dispenses with formalities and gets right down to business. this helps create a sense elf anxiety for the audience. What do we learn about Jeff in this scene without any pertinent lines of dialogue (other than what is written on Jeff’s leg cast)? How does Hitchcock gives us Jeff’s backstory simply through visual design? We learn a lot about him based by what he has in his apartment and ow he keeps his apartment. We also know that is a photographer and thus is accustomed to watching people. Does this opening scene make you feel like a voyeur or, at a minimum, remind you of being a an immobile spectator? What feelings does Hitchcock elicit from you as his camera peers into these other people’s apartments? I feel like I am watching things unfold as a sort of observer. From the start he is out to make feel people uncomfortable and disturbed. Bonus question: if you have seen the entire film before, do you agree with Hitchcock that this film is his most cinematic? yes. it is sprawling and done on a big canvas. It has big stars, big color and big suspense.
  8. In how many ways does Hitchcock play with or visually manifest the metaphor of “criss cross” or “criss-crossing” in this introductory sequence. [For those who haven’t seen the film yet, the idea of “criss cross” is central idea in this film, a theme Hitch sets up from the opening frames of this film] Be specific. Having the train tracks intersect is indicative of how these characters form different worlds will meet and interact. it also is representative of how the audience will intersect with the film maker himself. Even in this brief scene, how does Hitchcock create a sense of contrast between Guy (Farley Granger) and Bruno (Robert Walker)? Consider everything from camera work, to clothing and shoes, to dialogue and speech, for example. The obvious things are the clothes, the way they speak and even how each of them is lt in the scene. Also it is clearly obviously that Guy is from a more privileged lifestyle than Bruno. There is also the music as well that moves and swirls around them to create atmosphere. While the visual design gets the most attention typically, how does the Dimitri Tiomkin score function as part of the mood and atmosphere of this opening sequence? His score is great in that it sets up the pace by moving along in pacing almost like a train. it builds and smolders and moves and then it calms down and picks up again.
  9. What Hitchcock "touches" do you see in this early scene from the movie? I think his use of sound and lighting are similar to other films. Bit i did notice how he uses the camera as a tool to convey feelings, emotion etc..You can tell thee is a hangover going on because of the way the camera is moving. Also his use of close ups. How does Hitchcock choose to light, frame, and photograph his two stars in this scene?What are some of the contrasts that Hitchcock trying to set up between these two characters through art direction, costume, and cinematography? Well here we see a sense coif fashion coming in. We see a very straight laced fashion for the men and a very comfortable and relaxed fashion for the ladies. he uses fashion as a n accessory to develop character. The framing also converts emotions and attitudes of the characters on screen and the lighting helps establish atmosphere. Based on this scene (or the entire film if you have seen it already), reflect on the casting of Cary Grant and Ingrid Bergman. Does this scene conform to or challenge their well-known star personas? I thin it really helped Begman cement her star status while also helping take grant into a new direction as a leading man. He has a shade of grey to his characters in hitch films that are not food in some of his other parts.
  10. What Hitchcock "touches" do you see in this opening sequence? Moreover, what do we learn about or know about the couple through the scene's visual design: the props, the set design or dressing, the decor, the camera angles, the lighting, etc? The touches I notice are how he uses close ups, opens his film in a fairly un-extraordinary way by having everyday people doing unintetresting things. There is alo the lighting, shadows and the way he uses the camera as a means to establish tension. The set dressing is very cosmopolitan but not chic. The cast is in comfortable and relaxed clothing. Do you agree or disagree with the following statement: the opening sequence of Mr. and Mrs. Smith is a typical "Hitchcock opening" based on openings you have seen so far in the other Daily Doses? Why or why not? It is a typically Hitch opening but one which is not in a locale with lots of people. it's more hemmed in and more casual. Still the way he frames the scene and uses his score and sets tone and pacing is very much in his style. What do think about the casting of and chemistry between Carole Lombard and Robert Montgomery? Do you think both are well cast for this "comedy of remarriage?" Why or why not? I think the two actors work together on screen but they were not the ideal cast hitch wanted. he is doing the best with what he has.Having said tehat they have a real comedic charm togehter that I think really does lock in the audience.
  11. What do learn about the character of Uncle Charlie in this prelude? Be specific.We learn that he is a brooding and scheming person who works to the point of exahaustion . We know that he has money and that it is most likely earned in unsavory ways. We also know that there is a lot more to him and that he has a temper. The way the scene is lit suggests an air of darkness and trouble to him as well. In what ways does this opening remind you of watching a film noir? If it doesn't remind you of a film noir, what makes the opening here different from the opening of a noir film like Siodmak's The Killers? (Note: If you haven't seen The Killers, it is fine to answer this question in general terms about your own personal expectations?For me the lay the shadows and lighting we used to convey atmosphere and mood are very film noir. He also has his back ot the audience and does not directly face the audience initially. hitch also uses the voice over to advance the plot. As we move into Hitchcock's Hollywood years, his scores will take on more importance than they did during the British years. Music will play a big role in Shadow of a Doubt. The film's score is by Dimitri Tiomkin, the first of four film scores that the composer will create for Hitchcock. What effect does the Tiomkin score have on the mood, atmosphere, and even the pace of this opening scene? His score not only underpins the emotional tension onscreen, it frames the drama, like a painting. The way the score rises and falls speeds up and slows down works in synchronization with what we are seeing onscreen. It is an effective tool for drawing us in and maintaining our attention.
  12. 1. Based on these opening scene, what do you anticipate is going to be more important in this film--the characters or the plot? (It is fine to make an informed guess about the 2nd question if you haven't seen the film yet) It is very much a character piece e in that we fare spending a lot of time being introduced to them. Almost like an Agatha Christie book or Britishmystery serials in that they always develop the characters before going straightway into the whodunnit. 2. What do you learn about Abbott (Peter Lorre) in his brief scene? How might this introduction affect your view of the character Abbott later in the film? We get a sense that he is charming and easy going with a hint that something is different under the surface. he seems kind of silly but is far from it. 3. We saw two opening scenes from Hitchcock's silent films in the Daily Doses last week (The Pleasure Garden and The Lodger). How is this opening both similar and different from those two films' opening scenes. They both use motion and sound to set up the openings. But here the motion and sound are more fluid and tightened up aesthetically.
  13. 1. In this sequence, describe how Hitchcock uses sound design to put you into the subjective "mind of Alice"? Be specific. ​It is interesting how often times you do not actually see the person talking. You hear them nearby or she walks into a room and hears them speak. You also have her react when she hears things, like when she is holding the knife and gets jarred. 2. Describe the different ways that the sound design of this scene operates in counterpoint to the visual track. For example, how does Hitchcock set up the shot where the knife flies out of Alice's hand so that it registers a shock in his audience? Pay attention to both what is happening visually and aurally. Be specific. He treats the film like a silent film in execution but allows little bits for dialogue and spoken word so that it can be used. You see her being staged in movement and body language as someone in a silent film, but then you hear sound. It is a bit of a shock sometimes when you actually hear spoken parts. This is because Hitchcock has done a great job of moving back and forth between the mediums. 3. Why do you think this particular use of subjective sound is not used frequently in cinema? ​I think it was a necessity in the transition from silent film to talkies and would not be really needed for other films. In films today it would slow things down.
  14. 1. How does Hitchcock use montage or expressive editing to add vitality and rhythm to this scene? He uses montage to depict the passage of time as well as indicate movement. This means he uses it to signify that several things are going on simultaneously. It also allows him to speed up or slow down the narrative. 2. As is the case with a lot of German Expressionist films, in this scene, there are many shots that are very subjective and put us into the psychological mind of a main character. Please note the various techniques Hitchcock uses to create that feeling of subjectivity. He uses shadows, lights, reflections and darkness in various way to help frame his scenes and set up the tension onscreen. Uiing these techniques plays with the viewer and draws him/her into what is happening onscreen. 3. How does Hitchcock stage the action, use set design, and editing techniques to increase the stakes in the rivalry between the two gentlemen? The way he develops and uses the space between both actors is significant, he stages it so the two actors almost are forced to confront each other because of proximity. The sets are designed to evoke the behaviors that Hitchcock wants to convey. they are often dreary and bleak.The editing is terrific because it creates a pace to the film that never really relents. This allows for edits where the drama is most intense.

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