phillyfilmbuff

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Everything posted by phillyfilmbuff

  1. 1. The syncopated way they repeat their exercises and the way they circle the prof leads us to the inevitable song and dance! Loving Donald O’Connor’s comic relief. He steals the show! 2. The actor playing the prof is pitch perfect as the straight man to the two men who openly show their playful disrespect! 3. Kelly is always the alpha no matter what. O’Connor is barely the beta. The prof is the beta hers. He’s like wait aren’t leading this lesson? Cute!
  2. 1. I love Doris Day in this film. She’s a tomboy who wants to be on equal footing with the men, but she’s good-natured enough to shrug off their not taking her so seriuosly. Her scrubbed, cheerful appearance makes her character appealing. 2. The nuances of Day’s performance here are just a hint of what she dishes out in Love Me or Leave Me and The Man Who Knew Too Much or her comedic genius later on in Pillow Talk, Lover Come Back and more. She can and does do it all. 3. Her sunny persona definitely adds to the character and the musical. She’s likeable, loveable, and it’s easy to understand her actions and motivations. The audience will root for her!
  3. 1. The actors take turns with the song as in a hand off...its kind of cute and fun! Older musicals focused on one performer 2. The “costumes” were more something the actors would wear normally - not what we would think of asshow wear and the colors flattered each other. No individual wear made them stand out from the ithers. 3. It was great ensemble staging - the actors totally connected.
  4. 1. It shows a wife’s devotion to her husband as long as she knows he loves her and that his recovery puts her disappointments with him and the problems he’s caused her in a less important place. 2. A child brings a different kind of passion and devotion but still as srong but its all the same if the child brought problems or behaved badly these would be eclipsed by the childs well-being. 3. Gives black americans so ething to relate to in a time when they were being asked to serve their country amidst a past of racism that had changed much in the present.
  5. 1. The shots are syncopated to the music. Like an exclamation mark for Betty’s actions trying to corner Frank. It was wonderful! It really showcases Garrett in this role reversal with Frank acting as the ingenue. The number pops! 2. It starts up immediately as Frank exits the locker room and you see sly Betty at the end of the short hallway looking like the cat about to eat the canary as the musical strains scream here comes the number you’ve been expecting! Terrific! Classic! Quite a surprise for the 40s.
  6. 1. The first film I saw her in was A Star is Born and it was breathtaking and long! I loved every minute of it and i think i must have seen the roadshow of it. I didnt see The Wizard of Oz until the following year in its re-release to theatres and I flipped over it. i dont recall if i related the two Judys at that age though. 2. I dont view her differently. I always felt she was perfection as an actress, singer and dancer and so natural. These performances were a testament to that. After all, she was paired with two of them the greatest song and dance men ever and she was up for the challenge! 3. I think because Garland’s fame was her singing most of all I’d have to say A Star is Born because her acting competes with her awesome vocals. I think you have to look at her later work in A Child is Waiting, I Could Go N Singing, and of course her gem of a performance in Judgement At Nuremberg to understand just how powerful a performer she was.
  7. 1. The conversation with the butler as Cohan goes for his audience with FDR, the presidential portraits, flashback to the parades of his childhood, etc. 2. It wouldnt have been as effective if not for the opening sequence and conversation with FDR. What really got me was FDR saying “You Irish Americans carry your love of country like a flag.....” 3. Opening with the FDR chat sets the scene for starting the bio in flashback. A note: I always enjoyed this biopic but now as an adult I view the whole patriotism thing differently. We've got a president looking to stay out of WWII knowing what was happening in Europe to insure his re-election! A government responsible for turning away a ship of 938 Jews trying to escape the Nazi - the final signal for the Nazis to go foreward to do the worst. Antisemitism and racism at an all time high.
  8. Its a shame that Meet Me in St. Louis is being shown at 2:15am and is one of the recommended viewings. I recommend it as well - its a personal favorite - and I’ve seen it dozens of times. Awesome Minnelli feature, but then what of his films wasn't awesome.
  9. A Quiz now dies n the Rose Marie/Nelson Eddy question... bummer!?
  10. 1. This is not so much a battle but a challenge or dare to be an equal partner in the dance possibly intimating a relationship of equal passion. Astaire puts out the challenge and Rogers takes it up and then some. 2. This seems more modern, natural and in the present. Although their are moments with that Broadway feel it seems to have a closer affinity to modern film musical. 3. Women, out of necessity, had to step up to support their family and themselves at the tail end of the Depression and on the eve of World War.
  11. 1. Even from this short clip, you get the feeling the audience must have had on first viewing an early introduction to sound. The sound is primitive at best especially background crowd sounds. Lubitsch amps up the sound for Chevalier’s English translations to the audience. I loved that and it became quite evident this was an influence on Woody Allen. You can definitely the over the top reactions you’d get from a silent film and by playing the majority of the dialogue in French it actually leaves American audiences in a similar place as a silent with Chevalier replacing title frames. It’s such a fun, witty film! 2. Chevalier bringing the audience into the zaniness and absurdity of the action with his wry asides to us. 3. It hints at the dawning of the age of the screwball comedy.
  12. 1. The first was a total surprise to me - my impression of those two was always based on that clip of their famous duet which did nothing for me. They were like cardboard characters. This clip shows us an utterly charming guy hinting at a guy comfortable in his own skin while McDonald comes off as smart, sexy woman who acts like she’s in control but the scene hints things are going to change in their dynamic. It was kind of sweet and funny. The next scene shows us what was hinted in the first clip. She’s exposed as an ingenue and he’s embarrassed for her and wants to protect her from her humiliation at being out of her element and really out of touch with more carnal world she’s obviously been sheltered from. Good stuff good start for romantic film. 2. Never saw them except for afore-mentioned clip. 3. More of a clean more innocent approach to male-female relationship but does hint there’s something more there.
  13. 1. Yes unlike the time it jokes about extravagant tipping and there’s not an inkling that there is a Depression going on. It’s all playful and light. Also the competition to come is only hinted never played up. 2. Light banter, extravagant set design, big numbers, light romance. 3. Pre-code might have been more explicit but there is certainly sexual undertones. They just worked around th code. Pre-code would have had Rainer in a state of undress in the dressing room. I kind of loved how Rainer teases the audiences with the mirror while she sings her come-on to them.
  14. The films I always find myself coming back to have to be Meet Me in St. Louis, Singing in the Rain, Cabaret, Funny Girl, West Side Story, My Fair Lady, The Sound of Music, Chicago and of course 42nd Street and all the great Busby Berkeley films of the 30s! Most importantly, my first love that made me fall in love with musicals..... The Wizard of Oz! and I must include A Star is Born (1954) which I sat through as a child spellbound by Judy Garland. Oh my god.. did I forget to mention Gigi!??! The King and I? All the old Disney animated classics.
  15. 1. Opening in a crowded public place where everyone is enjoying themselves. It's so much fun how can something bad happen here? A departure in that nothing alarming has happened yet. (We'll this setup repeated in films like North by Northwest) 2. Agree that Hannay is introduced to us as laid back likeable guy in a jovial setting. As we learn more about him we accept how he gets in desperate situation by his own helpfulness, curiosity and spirit of adventure. 3. We're introduced to Mr. Memory, the playfulness of the audience and just a fun scene not knowing how important this place and the performer will play later on. Also we first hear the refrains of a tune that introduces Mr. Memory which becomes a recurring musical footnote throughout the film.
  16. 1. Seems to me to be more character driven and a wonderful way of introducing all the key characters. 2. Abbot seems to show two faces: jovial and self-deprecating over the knockdown and we see another side to him when he recognizes Luis Bernard - Abbot expresses dislike and then covers it quickly! Also the girl expresses the feeling there's something not right about him. 3. Spectacular opening with crowd scene and uproar as the crowd reacts to Luis accident and then close in on some key characters affected..and by way of introduction unlike The Lodger have a murder and reaction to it but no personalization. The Pleasure Garden is just opening excitement of the entertainers and audience.but it takes time for intrigue to be ntroduced by the pickpockets.
  17. 1. In this sequence, describe how Hitchcock uses sound design to put you into the subjective "mind of Alice"? Entering the scene we have a customer talking about the murder as Alice enters which sets up her state of mind, then the silence of the phone booth followed by re-entering the woman's chattering on more about the murder. 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? The woman's words, specifically about the knife, repeating itself in Alice's mind as she attempts to cut a slice of bread and the doorbell push her over the edge as the knife flies from her hand! 3. Why do you think this particular use of subjective sound is not used frequently in cinema? I'm not sure why because it's an awesome device if used right and at the right moment!

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