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About lilblue511

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  1. How does the opening of Frenzy differ from the opening of The Lodger? "Frenzy" starts with a peaceful and scenic overview of the River Thames. It almost feels like watching a travelogue. Then the camera comes in on a man giving a speech and then we see a body floating in the river. "The Lodger" starts with the murder right away and we see the crowds' reaction to the murder. It's not peaceful at all, it's chaotic right from the start with a screaming woman.
  2. 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? This opening scene seems more like a romantic comedy because it has a very light and airy opening-just a woman wanting to pick up a bird. There isn't any threatening music or characters. We get the idea that there could a romantic relationship in the cards for Melanie and Mitch. The only item that might be a little foreshadowing is the seagulls outside and the shop attendant telling Melanie that there's probably a storm that's driving them inland. We learn that Melanie is impatient and used to getting what she wants. We learn that Melanie is spontaneous and a bit of a prankster. We soon get the feeling that Mitch knows that she isn't an shop attendant and he just keeps egging her on.
  3. 1. Psycho opens with title design by Saul Bass and music by Bernard Herrmann. This is their third collaboration for Hitchcock, including Vertigo and North by Northwest. How does the graphic design and the score introduce the main themes of this film? The graphic design and the music have a choppy rhythm and look and some of the titles are in slices which is a foreshadowing of the shower scene. The music and the graphic design are very bold and "in your face" which I feel also describes the film. The music is quite unsettling, which fits the film as well. 2. Also, why do you think Hitchcock elects to enter the hotel room through the semi-closed blinds from the outside? Does this shot remind of any other Daily Doses we have watched? This goes back to the voyuerism of "Rear Window". We feel as if we are peeping into a private scene that we shouldn't be watching. This also happens later in the film when Norman Bates peeps on Marion Crane through a peep-hole.
  4. 1. Describe what you think this film will be about simply from the sounds and images in these opening credits. Even if you have seen the film, try to focus on these sounds and images themselves and “the story” (or if not "the story," the mood and atmosphere they are establishing) that this sequence is communicating to the audience. Based on the sounds and images, I would think this film would be about someone's psychological problems.The way that it focuses on the woman's eye and zooms in, it's as if we enter her mind. The images give it a very science fiction vibe. The music sounds threatening and a little frightening so we know the psychological issue can't be good. 3. How do Saul Bass’ images and Bernard Herrmann’s score work together? How different would this sequence be with a different musical score? The music just fits so well with the images! The last couple of opening sequences from this week's daily doses have had lighter music that puts the audience at ease and makes us believe everything is fine at the beginning. The opening score of "Vertigo" sounds threatening, frightening and full of despair. Along with the images, it gives the audience a feeling of having no control over what is about to happen.
  5. 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. Bruno's shoes are flashier and more stylish than Guy's plain shoes. I'm not sure if it's the way Bruno walks or the cut of his pants, but even his pants have more of a swish when he walks, compared to Guy. Guy seems more calm and quiet. Bruno starts the conversation, moves to sit right next to Guy and even shows off his tie pin. Guy just seems to take it all in and early on seems to get caught in the whirlwind of Bruno's life. I think all of us can read Guy's mind when Bruno says "I don't talk much, you can go ahead and read".
  6. 1. Describe how this opening is different from the multiple opening scenes you have seen in the Daily Doses from the British silent and/or sound period? This opening is different because it's not full of gaiety and music and crowds like the openings from the British films. It's got a very somber and lonely feeling to it. 3. How does this opening sequence use Manderley--the house itself--as a kind of character in the story? What affect does the flashback structure and the voiceover narration have on your experience of this scene? The flashback structure and the voiceover narration draw me into the film and entice me to watch the film to see what happened to the narrator and Manderley. It's the kind of opening that draws you in and makes you want to get comfy on the couch with a warm cup of tea while you watch the film.
  7. 1. Now that you have seen multiple openings to Hitchcock's British films, how does this opening both fit a pattern you have seen previously as well as deviate from other opening scenes? I feel that the opening of this film fits the pattern of some openings we've seen in the Daily Doses. It's very jovial and fun and it's got music and laughter. That fits the same pattern as the opening of "The Pleasure Garden" and "The Ring". One way it deviates from those 2 films is that "The 39 Steps" doesn't have a sense of foreboding-that something bad will happen. It's also got the flashing lights that "The Lodger" had in the opening.
  8. 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. I feel that blurring the images and elongating the piano keys puts us in the mind of the main character as it resembles a dream-like sequence. It makes me think of how we day-dream or think about a memory--everything is blurry and out of proportion.
  9. 1. The part of this scene that instantly made me think of other Hitchcock films was when one of the men in the audience used binoculars to view the chorus girls. Of course, it made me think of "Rear Window", but also reminded me of an early scene in "The Birds" when Tippi Hedren's character looked across the bay at the Brenner family. She was spying on them, much like the man with the binoculars in this short clip from "The Pleasure Garden". 3. I don't feel that a lack of spoken dialogue detracted at all from this scene. The movement and pace and character reactions helped immensely.
  10. The city in this scene seems abandoned. It kinda reminds me of a town that has to be evacuated for nuclear testing. It just seems so lonely and desolate as Dix and the cops are navigating their way through it. The piles of bricks at the bottom of some of the buildings reminded me of pictures of Europe after WW2. It was comforting when Dix walked into the bar and there was music and another human.
  11. We can hear the train while we see the opening RKO logo and then it cuts to night with the train coming and the title seems to blast on the screen after a blast of light and sound. It reminds me of earlier films noir we've seen, it doesn't seem to add anything new and fresh to film noir. Maybe the rest of the film will have something new and inventive. I can see why Foster Hirsch criticized the dialogue, it does kinda sound like a parody of films noir.
  12. I think a film about a heist can make us think of criminals differently than we would if we were just watching a regular shoot-em-up gangster film. To successfully pull off a heist, the person has to be calm and very meticulous and go over and over the same procedure multiple times to help ensure everything will run smoothly. It shows us a criminal who has brains and not just brawn, someone who can think fast enough to stay ahead of the cops. If they weren't criminals trying to steal something, they could make a great addition to society by applying their smarts to something worthwhile and good.
  13. The director showed us a lot of contrast between cinema and television with the boxing scene. With the cinema, we could see the blood clearly and see the sweat beading on Ernie's brow. With the television, when the commentator was saying there was something wrong with Ernie's eye, we couldn't see the eye very well on the tv screen, but the cinema screen was able to show us the real-time view of Ernie's eye. The director shows us how much we can see with cinema by displaying the tv screen and Ernie watching it all in the same frame. Also, the director showed us that there are a lot of distractions with watching television, such as Ernie's wife telling him to finish his dinner. The director also showed us that our escape from reality is over so much sooner with television than with cinema. Ernie's wife shuts the tv off and then starts nagging at him, bringing him back to a harsh reality.
  14. At the beginning of this scene, we get the feeling that Kirk Douglas' character is successful and in control and that Van Heflin's character isn't so successful or powerful and this is also conveyed in the way Douglas is standing over Heflin. However, that quickly changes when they share drinks and Heflin asks a favor and when Douglas isn't sure he can do the favor, Heflin says "Oh, you can do it. You will". In this part, we see Heflin become powerful. We can tell that Douglas doesn't really want Heflin to see Stanwyck and when she does come in, Douglas becomes more of an onlooker and third wheel instead of her husband. I believe that was also conveyed in the staging by having Douglas behind them looking on as the jealous husband. It appears that there was once something between Heflin and Stanwyck. I think a small Midwestern town is a great setting for a film noir because the shady characters have less people standing in their way of becoming powerful. They're able to make people be quiet when they need them to be quiet by threatening them with scandal or shutting down their business. Those things are easier to do in a small town. Sometimes, in small towns, people have the feeling that nothing bad can happen in their town. If I'm not mistaken, Shadow of a Doubt seemed to take place in a small town.
  15. I've noticed in a lot of films noir, such as this one, that innocent people do get dragged into these unexpected incidents, causing a lot of trouble and danger for them. Maybe one of the reasons this was a popular postwar theme was due to the witch hunt for communists back then and some of them were innocent people accused of being a communist when in reality they weren't. So the theme of innocent people getting in trouble was something that really resonated with folks. It was a surprising turn of events to see the wife take charge and speed away from the other car and actually manage to lose the person that was following them. In a matter of minutes we see an innocent wife turn into possibly a femme fatale (I have to see the rest of the movie to find out). I can't wait to see this on Friday!
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