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Jamaica Z Lee

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About Jamaica Z Lee

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  1. Finally watched The Big Sleep. (What a charming, but convoluted mess!) Was interesting to read how heavily Chandler's original story was censored because Production Code. From Wikipedia: In the novel, Geiger is selling pornography, then illegal and associated with organized crime, and is also a homosexual having a relationship with Lundgren. Likewise, Carmen is described as being nude in Geiger's house, and later nude and in Marlowe's bed. To ensure the film would be approved by the Hays Office, changes had to be made. Carmen had to be fully dressed, and the pornographic elements could onl
  2. After watching the Daily Dose of Darkness clip from Gilda, I did a quick search online to learn more about the film (sooo much to unpack with respect to gender, spectacle, the gaze, etc.). In my search, I ran across this essay about representations of homosexuality in film noir. (If you have ever watched The Celluloid Closet, you will already be familiar with many of the article’s ideas.) “Homosexuality and Film Noir” by Richard Dyer http://www.ejumpcut.org/archive/onlinessays/JC16folder/HomosexFilmNoir.html Perhaps we can use this thread to post comments and have *polite* conversa
  3. Love the camera work as Nick runs from the diner to warn "the Swede." When Nick turns into the alleyway, the high perspective, long shadows, and arched doorways remind me of De Chirico's paintings.
  4. As others have also pointed out, there are many formal similarities between the opening sequence of M and the beginning of Ministry of Fear, including the parallels between the children's game and the ticking clock (both establishing a rhythm and tension). However, most striking for me was the otherworldly quiet and unnatural sense of stillness as the action begins, almost like the calm before a storm. In each film, and like much German Expressionism, Lang frames the shots to emphasize the geometry of the architecture and the rigidity of the spaces these people inhabit. In both openings, he us
  5. In this example of proto-film noir, I see two big elements of plot and character development that must have been stylistic shifts in this era of Hollywood filmmaking: 1. Opening with a murder. After the setting is briefly established, we immediately see Bette Davis shooting a man (presumably her lover-- not her husband as others have stated). I haven't seen the whole film, so I don't know if the backstory is told through flashback or other means. However, regardless, an opening like this is a more sophisticated storytelling device than simply "beginning at the beginning." 2. The femme
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