avintagenerd

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  1. I think if she would have belted it out it would have seemed inauthentic and boisterous. Its not what the scene called for in my opinion. Nicky seems entranced by Fanny in a way that I at least didn't notice before this scene. In the beginning they are physically close to one another, even have a moment of being face to face. By the end is he father away only able to admire her from afar. Its almost telling of the whole film in one musical performance.
  2. An obvious similarity to both "Gaslight" and "My Fair Lady" was that the lead female characters are both in various ways manipulated and tossed aside once the goal of the lead male characters were met. This scene seems to be set in a way that gives both Hepburn and Harrison enough space physically to move around one another and enough space emotionally to wrap their thoughts and emotions around one another as well. It seems intimate and raw and yet honest and theres a sort of warm about the honesty in this scene even though Eliza feels used, discarded, and lost. I noticed that Eliza and Higgins are reacting to each other emotions and lack of emotions both in very emotional ways. Despite Higgins attempting to control his emotions he is reacting to Eliza instead of just simply ignoring. There in that scene is a hint that there may be more than meets the eye when it comes to Higgins affections towards Eliza (despite being in awe of her earlier at the ball). Eliza is affecting him in ways he isn't accustomed to and he see some authentic emotion coming from him as he reacts to her and her wailings.
  3. I found that in 1960's musicals or films in general men seemed more open to experiment with different types of roles. The 1960's was about change and we see that clearly in performances like Preston gives in "Victor/Victoria". I was surprised to learn that "The Music Man" was the first time Preston sang in a film. He seemed so comfortable in his performance. My history with his films started with "The Last Starfighter" then next to "Beau Geste" where I had one of my many "ah-ha" moments and was in awe that he had such a long and prolific career. I think its pretty neat that an actor like him worked in so many various genres throughout his career and was still open to try something new like a musical. To me it just shows how passionate and devoted to his craft that he was and also that he possibly wanted to keep challenging himself. He was one of the rare actors of the silver screen that seemed to be able to do it all and do it well.
  4. I get the sense that the scene is like a glimpse to what it was like during the beginning of stage musicals. Almost like the musical at its early beginnings. Oh that Rosalind Russell-loud and brash and out to take over. I have seen her in so many roles where she is like that and of course it only makes me curious to wonder if she was like that in real life. Even as the Mother Superior in "The Trouble with Angels" (1966) in which she did after "Gypsy" you can still see the feisty Russell doing what she does best albeit with a habit on. The fascinating thing about the lyrics "Let me entertain you" if that depending on who is singing in and the scenario they are in it can easily go from innocent to more risqué.
  5. Not at all. The scene is set up to be a fantasy and it serves it purpose. I found Kelly's character of Jerry is to be just a typical and slightly cynical American man. He is necessarily unlikeable but perhaps being a starving artist isn't doing any justice to his personality. Hunger can make a man cranky once in a while i.e. his reaction to the third year student.
  6. The pre-dance movements of O'Connor and Kelly are a precursor to what will continue on the seamless and intricate dance scene that we see next. The role of the straight man must be a tough one because one could be tempted to laugh at the silliness around him/her. I know I would! Kelly is obliviously the Alpha male but I don't think he could help himself. He had such a strong build and that a dazzling smile that I don't think anyone would be able to say no to. O'Connor on the other hand can be considered the Beta but when it comes to his talent to me, they were both Alphas. Watson is the straight man who is almost a prop himself in this sequence which adds more to humor of the scene.
  7. Doris Day's performance in "Calamity Jane" is extraordinary. Her range is relentless and mesmerizing to watch. I find that her character continues the theme of strong, independent women that we see especially in the mid-1940's musicals. In my opinion, although I found her acting to have a similar feel to it especially later on in her career-I do believe she grew as an actress and performer because of this role in "Calamity Jane". Her comedic timing became a part of her appeal as seen in "That Touch of Mink" and "With Six You Get Eggroll". I found her performance in "Calamity Jane" to be very energetic and spirited. I can see how having her character behave that way can be distracting or even annoying to some. For me it was like watching a fire cracker light up the screen. I say if you haven't seen this film, buckle up because Doris Day's performance is a wild ride and not one to be missed!
  8. The first thing I noticed about how the four characters included one another was the color scheme for their clothing. They are paired off and have coordinating outfits which visually at least for me is pleasing as well as telling me that they are part of something together somehow. The married couple are wearing grey, all the men are wearing something with a shade of blue in it, and to make the solo female counterpart stand out just a little bit they place a dash of red onto her dress. I also noticed how they casually touch one another, keep themselves physically close to one another, and face each other when they are singing often. I noticed that the staging and interplay between the characters was to show a unity with their passion for song and dance. It was also incredibly playful and very refreshing to see especially with Fred Astaire. Such a fun and truly entertaining performance by these four talented actors.
  9. When the sings cuts from her singing to Joe then to sorting out the wash just shows a role in the family as the one who takes care of everyone and holds everything together. I think I would have found the song and her performance more endearing if she were singing to a child. Her facial expressions and devotion to him seem somewhat based on fantasy than reality. Most women dealing with a husband who has an addiction like gambling and always putting the family's stability in danger would be bitter, angry, and resentful but Petunia is singing like he is the most precious thing on earth. It is unrealistic and yet it is sweet but it would have been sweeter if she were singing those words to a child instead. I wish films in the 1940's depicted what life was really like for people of color not just in the rural parts of America but urban parts too. I know society wasn't ready for all that and we get to see more honesty in films that have people of color in it as the decades move forward but it would have been nice to have at least one.
  10. Oh I found this clip to be hilarious! I noticed right away how they set it up for Betty to have enough space to give her man Frank some chase. Having the wall to push him against so she can show him she means business, the wood nearby so she can knock on it as she goes along singing the coordinating lyrics, and the bleachers are added to continue the chase. I loved it. I also loved learning that she was on the 70s shows I watched as a kid. Thanks for that added tidbit! You can tell a musical number is on its way with the slow approach Betty makes to Frank in the hallway. Its a tease to the fun and hilarity that would ensue a few moments later.
  11. Oh my first Judy Garland film was "The Wizard of Oz" and I was about 11-12 years old. I remember thinking how magical it all was and I loved the watching Dorothy's adventures in Oz. After watching these clips I was reminded on how amazingly comfortable and at ease she was performing. She had a certain pep in her step that those around her did not seem to have even though many of her co-stars were seasoned professionals or extremely talented, there just seemed something different about her compared to everyone around her. I also was reminded on how multi talented she really was. "A Star is Born" is a perfect example of of her increasing ability to capture an audience’s imagination as a storyteller when she sings later in her career. I cannot help but wonder what else could she have shared with the world had she lived a longer life.
  12. I remember when I first watched this film. I found it to be such an epic story because is spanned one mans lifetime. In this scene set in the White House, Cohan is walking up the stairs surrounded by painting of former Presidents. You can feel how Cohan is encased in walls rimming with patriotic symbolism. He then walks into the Oval Office and speaks to President Roosevelt and you can see the American flag behind him as well as on him in the form of a pin. I find it interesting that the President mentions that Cohan is Irish American which I think is to remind Americans that although we may come from other places it is in American where we experience true freedom. I enjoyed the flashback of the fourth of July as a flashback. I like that Cohan was retelling and sharing a personal story about patriotism in the company of the President of the United States.
  13. Such a lovely scene to watch. I actually found it relaxing watching them dance. Fred Astaire always looks like he is floating on air. Aside from matching each other in their dance routine I can't of think of anything else that would indicate a battle of the sexes. I know a few others commented that Rodgers was wearing a very masculine outfit but to me it looked like a typical ladies riding outfit. I actually would have loved to see her wear an actual mens suit but fitted for her figure but they probably put her in that riding outfit because it was the closest to a masculine costume they could think up for her character. The difference I can see from this film and the others we have seen is this one is less glitzy and the production isn't as over the top as the others. The beauty of film is that is often reflects the exact times we are living in. The moving images on the screen are like a piece of life and history at the time. During the Depression women had to become more assertive and learn more survival techniques and in many ways begin to learn to take the lead and match the men in their lives. We see that perfectly in that clip of Astaire and Rodgers in Top Hat (1935).
  14. Oh there are so many things I loved about this clip. What a great choice btw. I loved the close ups-they were like little clues and insights to the bigger picture. I loved, loved, loved the breaking of the 4th wall-that right there was setting everything up to be fun and unusual. I also loved the use of both the French and English languages-I had never seen that in a 1920's film before and that was enjoyable to see. Lastly, I loved the comedy element-it was off beat. Every moment kept me guessing and not once did I feel like I knew what was going to happen next. About the use of sounds, I noticed that the bang of the gun was particularly loud. Was that to create the effect of the intensity of what had just happened? I also noticed when he opened the door and heard the sounds of people in a crowd. It gave the impression that people took notice of the drama that ensued in that room and were clamoring to know what exactly happened. I really enjoyed this clip!
  15. I confess, this was my very first time seeing these two actors perform together and by golly I liked it. I want to see more so now I plan to find some of their films together because I loved their screen chemistry. I loved seeing how comfortable and playful they seem together in those two scenes. I looked up Nelson Eddy and Jeanette MacDonald so I could learn more about them and it seems they had a brief romance while filming Rose Marie (1936). Their onscreen chemistry came across as something you don't seen too often in films. They seemed relaxed and at ease with one another and had a connection that I wouldn't be surprised if it grew deeper offscreen. The relationships that were depicted seem to be clearly defined. There was a refined lady, a gentlemen who can be cad at times, and the overtly sexualized bar girl who thrusts herself into a round of applause. I noticed the men could have a duality to their personalities but the women were either ladylike or a party girl. She couldn't be both and I wonder why.

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