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Everything posted by lreed333

  1. I think of Chaplin as the Little Tramp. His characters' slapstick is so fully artistic and often done subtly. Keaton is very physical and bold in his comedy.
  2. Full screen shots leave it up to the viewer on what to focus on. So many elements go in to making this sketch. Close ups leave less room for the viewer to be able to choose what he wants to see and leave out so many elements crucial to making the whole scene work. A Piece of Cake is awesome as all the elements contributing to this slapstick are able to be viewed at once.
  3. I signed up for this course, frankly because the noir course was outstanding!! When I read the topic was to be slapstick, I immediately thought of physical comedy: Jerry Lewis, Buster Keaton, The Three stooges, Charlie Chaplin, & Laurel and Hardy. Knowing how this would be the tip of the iceberg, I was all in to learn, learn, learn. Data from Star Trek: The Next Generation defined slapstick as comedy stressing farce and horseplay. That's pretty succinct. It seems difficult to attach such a small definition to such a large body of work. I'm in with the 5 elements of slapstick!
  4. There is nothing subtle in the directors use of noir elements to contrast the film's version of the fight with television's. It isn't the slow motion that caught my eye, but the "flatness" and lack of depth or perspective to the television version. The low camera angles, POV shots and extreme close ups give formalism to the film vs the television which is more realistic, and in my opinion flat.
  5. Having never seen this film, my impressions show that Van Heflin has charge of this encounter. Van Heflin is confident and has some "power" over Douglas. What drives that point home is VanHeflin's response of "you will" to Douglas as if Douglas has no choice as to getting charges dropped on VanHeflins "friend". Blackmail, deceit, and bad karma have already laid the foundation for noir themes.
  6. Elizabeth Scott in Too Late For Tears, embraces the chance to keep newly acquired money. Along with embracing that money, comes a total flip of roles which Elizabeth Scott seems to revel. This role reversal in the film runs along side the role reversal for women during this time period. When the couple run with the money, they are going to be running for their lives. When I think of the other noirs I've watched, the protagonists seems to be running from their horror (Cloris Leachman in Kiss Me Deadly), or the characters are entangled by horrible fates (The Hitchhikers). Kennedy and Sc
  7. Since beginning this film noir class, I view film from a very different perspective. I especially enjoy watching them for certain clues that set the film up. It's almost like the first few minutes of the film set the viewer up and the viewer isn't even aware it's happening. Such is the opening scene of Criss Cross. Now that I look for details that inform the viewer of "things to come". Dress makes the man. It does in this opening sequence. Personalities are unfolded by fancy shoes and expensive suiting vs plain shoes and plain suit along with tennis rackets that are important enough to take
  8. Totally noir is this opening scene. What hits the viewer the hardest is the purposefulness in Edmond's walk. He steps hard in time to the music...driven. I feel as if I'm walking with him, something urgent message or purpose in his style is revealed.
  9. There is a shift in noir films this week that leaves the mystery and hooks that were present in earlier noir films. Elements of noir such as dark lighting, gritty realism and engaging music are present, but the futility and hopelessness of situations enters. It's a side of life that is dangerous to enter, bleak for the soul and truly uncomfortable. As a viewer, I truly don't know if I want to enter.
  10. Holy moly!! This is a great introduction for Cloris Leachman...her introduction is totally emphasizing her want to escape the current situation she's in, which the viewer has no clue to. But she's in a coat and barefoot, running blindly down a highway...which is totally not good in my mind. She's desperate. Mickey stops the car out of necessity, which is really evident by his lack of reaction, to her or her situation. He appear put out and extremely inconvenienced. He evidently could care less about her situation. So..where is this going? Now I have to watch it!
  11. -- What makes Harry Lime's (Orson Welles) "entrance" in this film so effective? At first, when Joseph Cotton recognizes he's being stalked, the cat, the skewed camera angle of the door and low lighting engage the viewer. We are focused on that doorway. The great lighting on Harry's face when the neighbor turns the light on all make this scene more engaging. What's more surprising is Harry's reaction. I expected him to run or confront Joseph Cotton's character, but he has this smug confident smile on his face.
  12. Wow, what an impact this seen has. John Garfield's character seems to reveal a man searching...ah...man wanted, in more ways than one. Oomph, va va voom, what a entrance on Turner's part. That seen sizzles from the moment the camera pans the floor to those legs. She traps him from the first seen.. He's hers, but, not without some submission. Great scene.
  13. In the clip from Jean Negulesco’s The Mask Of Dimitrios (1944), Peter Lorre's character walks off the elevator flipping his hat, and preoccupied thinking of something. The music playing is not dark or ominous. But as Peter Lorre opens the door, the music shifts to a "beware" forte. The upturned room along with the music, leads the viewer that something bad is about to happen and then Sidney Greenstreet appears with his gun in hand walking through a dark shadow. The clip now engages in the characters conversation, no music and the focus shifts to each character as does the camera. Ea
  14. There are many ways to interpret,"How do you learn about Jane Greer and Robert Mitchum?". Because the introduction to this question deals with shadow and lighting, that's the direction I take this question. Viewing this clip for the first time, shows the characters well lit. It appears that they have multiple lights on them giving them many shadows, but carefully done, so the shadows don't darken any character in the scene. After viewing the many film noir movies I have so far, This lighting approach seems different. Shadows are very apparent, but the characters seem well lit and focused
  15. The dark turbulent music sets the mood, in this film during the credits. The sweeping cinematography depicting the vast open landscape sets a dark undercurrent on the topic of illegal immigration for migrant workers and the violence that occurs. This clip shows how life should go, but the mood of the film is such the viewer knows there can be an ominous outcomes.
  16. My first viewing of the film clip from The Big Sleep, revealed Marlowe, a mellower fellow, compared to Sam Spade, as portrayed in The Maltese Falcon. His confident manner and the ease exhibited in his conversations with characters in this 5 min. clip are clearly evident. He's a well educated, well dressed, and definately gives the impression that he takes care of business. Spade is a man that also takes care of business, but his character takes a grittier persona, not so self assured detective.
  17. The concepts of realism vs formalism are foreign to me as used in film. The opening of this clip is realisticin it's portrayal of the two bad guys, the diner lighting and the no nonsense threat of the conversation going on. As Nick and Sam are untied, in the kitchen, there is no mistaking the realism of the situation, no fancy camera angles, and no extra conversation. As Nick burst into the Swede's room, the formalism begins. Emotions of the viewer are confused. Up to this moment, the viewer is tied up in the question, "Can the Swede be saved?" But the scene shifts that thought by showin
  18. This course brought to my attention that it's the journey of the film, not the ending that's so important in film noir. And, I've noticed that I have seen many of the noir films listed for TCM so far, but I have no recollection of the endings. Did Johnny get Gilda or how did Lawrence Tierney's character die in Born to Kill? Even after watching them, like Journey into Fear, if I play the film over in my head the next week, the ending is vague while some of those film sequences are still lit up and clear. Have any of you felt that way?
  19. I remember watching these films when I was a kid. They were so edgy and I had no label for them at that time. But the most fun was sitting down with my kids to introduce them into this world of art.
  20. The opening scene in M and the Ministry of Fears use dark shadows, bleak sets and different camera angles. Both lead the viewer into the premise of the movie but with many questions. There are elements that lead to the question "What's next?" The viewer is hooked at the very beginning to find out just what is going to happen as the plot of both exposes just enough beautifully in the first few minutes to totally engage the viewer. "
  21. In this film clip of Mildred Pierce, a definite film noir style is executed as what starts out as a mother daughter encounter quickly turns dark, gritty and realistic, a true film noir style. The camera concentrates on the two characters, concentrating on the person that is on the receiving end of the hateful words, capturing an abhorant, disbelieving reaction on Mildred's part. Ann Blyth spew of hate at Joan is also caught in a close up. Though never viewing this film, this film clip alone demonstrates a spoiled, ungrateful brat of a daughter. The distinctive mise-en-scene is beautifully arch
  22. As is stated in the Curator's Note: for first daily dose of the week, this musical number is definitely not a break in the film's action sequence, it adds another layer of depth in Gilda's desperateness to get to Johnny. Gilda's trying any resort possible to get to Johnny to unlock the core of him that she once knew. This sequence seethes with undertones. Gilda figures by flaunting what Johnny keeps insinuating she is, will just be too much for him. She's trying to break him, elicit a response, any response from Johnny. The music, combined with her actions, delivery and words, explode o
  23. Marlowe is a hard boiled, no nonsense detective in contrast to a traditional cerebral detective such as Sherlock Holmes. Marlowe has rougher edges. The camera focuses more on the dialog between the two characters and the development of the protagonist then the case itself. He's grittier and physical in the way he handles women,with a zero tolerance for monkey business. This scene pulls the viewer into the conversation with its film noir setting.
  24. This wasn't a typical introduction of a character at all in my mind. I wondered how Waldo let the detective in, as it starts with him observing Dana Andrews, but from exactly where is a mystery at first. Then, to discover him sitting in a bathtub, typing is odd, and nothing expected. This is truly a unique introduction.
  25. There was no way I anticipated what happened in this scene. From plantation workers, relaxing at night, a gentle breeze blowly, all to be shattered by a gun shot. The scene that followed was full impact.
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