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Everything posted by EffieP

  1. EffieP

    The Sting

    Not a musical, but the music is very important to the movie. In the original theater release Hooker (Robert Redford) steps around the corner at exactly the same time as the chorus for Easy Winners. It's timed perfectly though I don't know if it would be the director or Marvin Hamlisch, who did the Scott Joplin songs, who was responsible. Hooker also put a blood capsule in his mouth before he leaves his room on the last day of the Sting. I bought the VHS version as soon as it came out. I was disappointed to find that the capsule is cut out of the scene and Hooker is out of synch coming around the corner. This is also true of the Turner Classic Movie version that they play on tv. Does anyone know where I can get a copy of the original version?
  2. I saw West Side Story on the big screen. I loved Rita Moreno, George Chakiris and Russ Tamblyn. Hated Natalie Wood and Richard Beymer. I think they were put in because they were "stars" at the time. Natalie especially annoyed me.
  3. I also loved it. Loved all the songs.
  4. Did anyone else think that the dance sequences were badly cut? It wasn't seamless like others of that time. It was like they couldn't get the whole dance in one shot so they tried to crop it together.
  5. We were discussing editing in this class. Whoever did the editing on this got it exactly right. Every hand movement etc. is exactly on the beat. I also recognize a lot of the clips as being from the movies in our class.
  6. I don't know how many of you may have already seen this but I absolutely adore it. I thought that anyone who liked musicals would also enjoy it. I'm not sure how to do this but a search will find it. www.youtube.com/watch?v=M1F0lBnsnkE Old Movie Stars Dance to Uptown Funk - YouTube
  7. I've only seen Frenzy once and I hated it. I thought at the time that Hitchcock was dumping "class" to pander to the "modern" audience. Come to think of it... I still think that. 1. There were a lot of differences in the openings of The Lodger and Frenzy. The Lodger starts with dramatic music and a screaming woman while Frenzy starts with a very "Rah rah British" sounding theme that pans to a guy giving a speech. You would never know it was the start of a horror movie. The Lodger continues with word of the murder spreading across London. In the Frenzy scene, the body isn't even discovered until the end of the scene. The Hitchcock cameo in the first movie is nearly unrecognizable with his back to the camera. (I didn't see it until someone pointed it out in the comments). In the cameo in Frenzy, Hitchcock (standing in the crowd) was quite obvious. One note about the Lodger - I never understood what that flashing "to-night "golden curls" was supposed to be. I also didn't get the blinking "Murder, wet from the press" Later there was a sign flashing a message that people were reading, but I couldn't figure out what kind of signs would say the first two. 2. Hitchcock starting with a crowd, acting as an audience, is a familiar touch. The long panning shot is a familiar touch. 3. Most openings would set a time, a place and a mood. But I would think that is common in most movies, not Hitchcock in particular.
  8. tshawcross said ​I was a bit puzzled by her social security cards. Certainly, the multiple cards were meant to inform us that she uses multiple aliases or identities, but if she wanted to be careful about concealing her ruses, why does she carry the cards with her? Yes, I understand that they were hidden in her compact, but they would not have been hard to find. Also, why was she using an older card (6-9-59) for her new identity as Margaret Edgar? The identity she was now discarding (Marion Holland) was issued on 4-5-60. Also, based on the area codes on her social security cards (the first three numbers), she applied for her first identity in California, her second in New York, her third in California again, and her fourth in Arkansas! Margaret Edgar is Marnie's real identity. She is changing back into herself. That is why she keeps her old Social Security Card.
  9. 1. We see that she is changing her complete personality; her hair, her clothes and her identity. The different social security numbers could be someone on the run from something like a violent ex-husband, but the wad of money makes it seem more nefarious. She's more likely on the run from the law. 2. The music seems repetitious. Repeating the same strains over and over until the crescendo when she is revealed to be a blonde. It could indicate that this is something she has done over and over, repeating a pattern of changing her identity. 3. This time Hitch looks at the camera. Everyone is watching for him, by this point in his career. He's letting you see him, so we can get on with the story. I've seen this movie before and I admit I've never noticed the echoes of previous films. The key from Notorious or the grate from Strangers on a Train. Thanks to Rich for pointing it out. It adds to my enjoyment of the film. One thing I've always remembered from this film is the pronunciation of "insurance". Whenever my sister pronounces it differently from me, I think of Marnie.
  10. 1. As Rich said, the score is irritating and causes anxiety. It keeps time with a rapidly beating heart. The words in the title design keep shifting rapidly, also causing anxiety. The title Psycho jerks from readable to disjointed. The whole sequence in unsettling. 2. I think the time of day is very important to the plot. It shows that its the middle of the afternoon, very late for a lunch hour. The day is Friday, which is also important to the plot, a little later in the story. We come in under the shade because we're sneaking a look at something hidden unlike the Rear Window sequence where almost all the curtains are opened. They are unmarried and having an affair which was quite racy at the time. 3. Marion's having an illicit affair but she wants to "be respectable". She's pushing Sam to marry her. It shows that though she's good at heart, she is willing to break the rules to get what she wants. This is an important piece of her character that pushes the plot forward.
  11. I've got nothing on this scene but I wanted to give kudos to the lead in of the Lecture Video. Very cute!
  12. 1. The 39 Steps 2. The Lady Vanishes 3. Strangers on a Train 4. Psycho 5. Rear Window I like the first two because they include a little romance with characters I like. With Strangers and Rear Window, I like the plots. They could happen to anyone: accidentally bumping your foot against a psychopath or being bored and looking out a window. I think Psycho is the best horror movie of all time. Once again coming across someone who seems normal on the surface but has worse than normal "mother issues". I can watch all five over and over.
  13. 1. The opening sequence is unsettling, dramatic, surprising and mysterious. I would assume the movie is the same. 2. For me, the single most powerful image is when the screen turns red, the woman's eye widens in surprise and the title "Vertigo" come's toward the viewer (around 00.51). Red represents danger, the woman seems afraid and something is coming toward us. I think the sequence is set up to make the audience afraid. 3. I think the music is what sets the mood for most of the sequence. The twirling things alone would not make you afraid. It would have an entirely different vibe if the music was "The Windmills of Your Mind".
  14. 1. Well, I still think it's Jeff's vantage point whether he's looking out or not. I suppose it would also be the theater audience's vantage point. Hitch is presenting us with the setting of our story(ies). 2. The visual design lets us know that our main character lives in the city (window view). It's summer (sweat & thermometer) He's had some sort of accident (the cast). Probably hurt while being a photographer (broken camera and car wreck photo). He's an adrenaline junkie (more explosion photos). The only odd note was the fashion photo. Did his broken leg reduce him to fashion photography? 3. I would say it made me feel more like a immobile spectator than a voyeur. I've been watching movies and television all my life. It didn't make me feel like a window peeper. They were all standing in front of their windows (or even outside their windows) with no shades pulled. It's not like in Psycho where the camera crawls under the shade. 4. I'm not sure what Hitchcock means when he says this film is his most cinematic, so its hard to agree or disagree. The notes mentioned that the set is "set up" as if we were a movie audience viewing out the window so that would be "like a movie". The various mini movies were told visually with little or no dialogue. I enjoyed the factoid that "the designers even matched the size of the windows to different screen aspect ratios.” This movie is another of my favorites.
  15. This is one of my favorite movies. 1. The criss-crossing is evident from the beginning where Bruno arrives from the right and Guy arrives from the left. It follows with a back and forth between Bruno coming from the right each time and Guy from the left. The rail road tracks enter from each side of the screen to meet only to diverge and meet again, a constant intertwining. The shoes finally enter the train from either end and meet when Guy's foot accidently hits Bruno's. 2. Hitch shows contrasts between Bruno and Guy in their clothes. Bruno is flashy: two-toned shoes, a pin-striped suit and a loud tie that has a clip with his name. Guy is more conservative: brown shoes, plain suit, tie covered by a sweater. He also contrasts their speech. Even though Bruno says "I don't talk much", he starts the conversation and continues it with very little help from Guy. Guy says barely six words while from Bruno we find out that he is gregarious, that Guy is a profession tennis player and we even hear a bit about Bruno's mother (another important character to the story). 3. The Dimitri Tiomkin's music continues the theme of contrasts. The opening has booming brass contrasting with lilting strings. As they walk toward each other, the music ramps up the tension with each step emphasized, only to drift off into strings. Finally, the music ends with a final blast as Guy's shoe hits Bruno's.
  16. 1. There are a lot of POV shots and POV tracking shots. Rich mentioned that the upside down shot of Cary, Hitch used before in Downhill. The light focusing on the drink reminds me of the glass of milk in "Suspicion". The close-up of her lying in the bed, peeking out of her hair, reminds me of Carole Lombard's shot in yesterday's "Mr. and Mrs. Smith". 2. The contrasts between the stars is shown by Ingrid in mostly close-ups of her face and Cary in mostly full body shots. He show Ingrid as messy and hung-over and Cary as well-dressed and upright. He shows Cary at first coming toward her and then moving away. He show Ingrid moving away and then coming closer. Finally Cary comes toward her with a POV dolly shot and they end up together in a two-shot. It's a visual representation of what is happening between them. 3. I think that they are playing against type in this movie. I've always thought of Ingrid as being the "good" girl and not the party girl that she is playing in this. I think Cary is a bit of stinker in this. He has played a wide range of characters in his 30-some years in the movies but I like him better with a comedic touch.
  17. 1. I saw nothing that reminded me of Hitchcock in this first scene. It does have some humor but not necessarily Hitchcock humor. What we learn about the couple is that they are stubborn and rich. The visual design is bright, airy, and expensive. 2. I see no resemblance to the other Hitchcock openings that we've seen. It is obviously a comedy and I can't think of another Hitchcock like that. Maybe "The Trouble with Harry" but I don't remember it being an obvious comedy from the beginning. 3. I thought the casting of Carole Lombard and Robert Montgomery was perfect for this movie. Lombard is a fantastic comedienne and plays screwball very well, for example "My Man Godfrey". Montgomery always seems to have a "happy" face and I find him much more credible in comedies than when he played film noir tough guys like in "Lady in the Lake" or "Ride the Pink Horse".
  18. 1. We learned that while Charlie is soft-spoken, he has anger issues. He knows why the men are there and that they are trying to prove something against him. He's bold and confident. He thinks he's smarter than they are and decides to bluff it out by walking right passed the two men. 2. The film noir aspects: It takes place in a low rent room. It's in black and white with pronounced shadows. Filmed from low angles. Glass of alcohol. He's in the dark with the sun shining shadows on the room and the curtains casting shadows on his face. Hearing his thoughts is also "noir". It is very reminiscent of the opening scene of Robert Mitchum in Farewell My Lovely. 3. I thought the Tiomkin score was a little over the top, especially when he was just going to walk out the door. It certainly ratcheted up the tension.
  19. 1. The scene is different from most of the scenes we've watched in that there are no crowds or audience, not even a person, just a voice. It's not a public place but a private place, a home in a memory of a dream (they don't get more private than that!). 2. The shot that said "Hitchcock" to me was the shot of the back of Olivier's head looking down to the rocks below followed by his foot stepping closer to the edge. To me the water crashing onto the rocks shows the internal struggle of the character. The lure of just ending it all. The audience is worried for him. Our hero is in danger, even if only from himself. 3. The way she talks about Manderley makes is seem important to the story she is about to tell. The voice over narration takes us immediately into the mind of the storyteller, drawing us into the story. The flashback, gives a first person narrative of what happened to destroy the house.
  20. SPOILER ALERT! I always like to post my thoughts before reading other people's so that I'm not influenced by what others are saying. In my post last night I mentioned that I thought the tune was odd considering the circumstances. Someone else's post reminded me that the tune did fit one particular person, Miss Froy. She was the only person in the scene with the happy outlook that fit the song that was playing as she made her entrance and exit. This morning I had one of those Eureka OMG moments that only happen early in the morning or in the middle of the night.. It's the MacGuffin! It filled me with such delight, I had to share. How diabolically clever of Hitchcock. I've seen this movie more than once and it is one of my favorites, but it never occurred to me. Even watching the scene yesterday when Rich told us to pay attention to the music. As Wes said early last week, even after repeated watching, you can still find something new. I have to thank Rich, Wes and this message board for providing my favorite new find. Love it!
  21. 1. Even though there has been an avalanche and the people are glumly waiting for word of the next train the music is happy and light-hearted. It's an odd contrast. 2. Caldicott and Charters seem to be comic relief. Hitchcock seems to be poking fun at how "vedy British" they are. Snobbish and looking down their noses at the "foreigners" even though they are in fact the ones who are foreign. 3. Margaret Lockwood is established as the star over the other girls because: a. She speaks first as they come in b. She's in the two-shot with the desk clerk and has the most lines when they move to the stairs c. She's a step above the other girls in the shot by the stairs. d. She is the only one with a close-up
  22. 1. This scene is similar to The Pleasure Garden and The Man Who Knew Too Much in that we start out being introduced to an audience and then by seeing things from their point of view, we become part of that audience. This way he draws us into the story. 2. I agree that Robert Donat is a more innocent character. He's definitely not a "lurking type" 3. There is humor in the music hall scene with the audience making jokes to each other. On Mr. Phillips check list, I would say that this represents both #3 and #4. Evil lurking in a place "that at first glance seem normal and unthreatening" and "places where the viewer might often find themselves—not in locations that we tend to avoid in order to escape potential harm, such as dark alleys and dives…”
  23. I just watched "The Man Who Knew Too Much" (1934) and I have to say that I thought Wes Gehring was being harsh in his commentary where he said the little girl was a brat and he would shoot her himself. He compared her to Red Chief in "The Ransom of Red Chief" Does this man have kids?
  24. 1. I think the characters will be more important. I haven't seen this version but I recognize the basic plot from the remake. In most Hitchcock movies I've seen and as mentioned in our lectures, the McGuffin is secondary to the characters. This opening scene emphasizes the characters and we don't really know anything about the plot except that the skier and Lorre seem to know each other. 2. What we learn about Lorre is that he seems to be an affable, friendly sort of person until he looks up and realizes that the skier is standing there. Then he looks startled but tries to cover his reaction, making him seem dishonest or covering up something. 3. The similarities: The first shot is directed to the middle of the screen. We are brought in from the general crowd to close ups of specific characters. The differences: the music in the first shots of "The Pleasure Garden"' sets a rather frantic pace that the nearly silent scene of "The Man Who Knew Too Much" doesn't have. From what Rich Edwards says, it will soon "kick into high gear and not slow down until its fantastic and thrilling final sequences".

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