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merrittson1

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Everything posted by merrittson1

  1. This course, The Master of Suspense: 50 years of Hitchcock, was my summer vacation. I loved learning, sharing, viewing and going to different places these films took me . Thank you for a most enjoyable adventure. A big thanks to Professor Richard Edwards ( you haven't aged at all) Wes Gehring,(you are very knowledgeable and serious about your passion)Ball State University and TCM. As all great directors have collaborators, I thank your team for making it all happen with professionalism and fun. I will miss reading TCM message board and everyone's comments, it was very enlightening. I took the
  2. Just saw the Shindig video with Richard Edwards and Alexander Phillippe. The topics and questions discussed were enlightening. I loved the informal forum. I appreciate that people want to delve more in to what makes a great artist, but sometimes it's the need to just create and keep things anew. I think if Hitchcock analyzed why he did certain things in his films, we would not have this volume of outstanding films. He just did them. As far as collaborators, he might be interested in working with,I would have to say Chris Nolan. I feel he is an artist/entertainer just as Hitchcock was. He also
  3. Danny DeVito's "Throw Mama from the Train" 1987. Hilarious movie and DeVito definitely paid tribute to the Master, with his criss/cross murder. I think "Body Heat" could have paid homage to Hitchcock as well. There was a lot of twist and turns that Hitchcock would have recognized. I just finished watching the movie "Witness" Peter Weir director. I definitely saw the Hitchcock influence in this film as well. The camera shots, the suspense, the musical score and the cinematography. Weir definitely was paying attention.
  4. I just read Steve Vertlieb's article: Herrmann and Hitchcock:The Torn Curtain, and found it informative and fascinating about the relationship of these two great artists. I think there is a movie in this working collaboration. I'm so sad that egos got in the way towards the end of their careers. I am grateful for their contributions and their artistic respect for one another when things were in synch.
  5. The graphic title design is like looking through blinds. This conjures up a voyeuristic theme that we saw in Rear Window. The word Psycho is sliced in pieces. A hint of what is to come in the film. Bernard Herrmann music is psycho. I can't even image what this film would be like without it. The stabbing sounds are haunting and recognizable anywhere. By defining the exact day, date and time of the opening scene, we are brought to this through a window with semi-closed blinds to an afternoon liaison between Marion and Sam. We know that the Marion is a risk taker by engaging in this illicit affai
  6. This is pure joy to watch the art of seduction by these two handsome actors. Their chemistry is extraordinary. I couldn't help compare the flirting between Grace Kelly and Cary Grant in "To Catch a Thief". Their flirting was adolescent compared to this. Eva Marie Saint was in total control with her eye contact and lack of outward emotions. Hitchcock definitely had an innate ability to cast stars that would captivate the audience. The subtle sound design played right along with this **** for tat seduction dual. This is my favorite part of the whole movie. It hooked me.
  7. Hitchcock masters the repetition of the criss cross motif throughout this opening scene. It is evident in the train tracks, crossed legs, crossed fingers and hands. It even shows up in Guy's tie. There is contrast of wealth and average in the fashion, flashy and mundane. The personalities are contrasted as well. Bruno is an extrovert and Guy is reserved and shy. The music is dramatic in the opening credits and playfully changes tempo when the characters are introduced. There is jazzy mood,then it slows with the rhythm of the traveling train. Music is going to be vital in this movie. I can't
  8. This opening is different from the from his British films because there is no fast pace or frenzy in the this scene, except maybe the rushing water. Nature seems to be important along with the house. I couldn't help thinking about the movie, Jane Eyre. There were some similarities, very gothic, eerie and foreboding presence. There is also the narration that we haven't seen before. The Hitchcock "touch" would be the introduction of characters early on, including the house. The camera work is more developed and the framing of scenes are incredible. Totally love this movie. I am enjoying seeing
  9. It seems as Alice walks through the door of the shop, she is aware of sounds, but they are not registering. She seems to have a preoccupation with a problem that is giving her some anxiety. The phone booth is giving her solace from the mundane gossip. As she enters the room for breakfast, she is going through the motions of a daily routine, except for the gossipy woman's repetition of the word knife. It's that stabbing word of knife, that registers in her facial expressions. Each time the word is repeated louder and louder, her eyebrows are raised higher and higher like the rhythm of a stabb
  10. The diagonal shot of the screaming woman, eyes gazing towards her killer then darkness definitely draws you in immediately, just like the spiral staircase of descending women. Hitch is honing his craft in film making. I watched The Pleasure Garden in full yesterday, interesting but stopped and walked away a few times. The first four minutes of the Lodger left me with wanting more. I see the influence of the German expressionists since I am familiar with "M". I saw similarities like the dark shadowy lighting that emphasized fear and desperation. The newspaper reporting of the murder was intere
  11. How handsome are these two actors sneaking between dark cars for this romantic tryst. You know this is not going to end well, it's a Noir film with a controlling husband. I'm, looking forward to the emotional experience and watching closely with a discerning eye. The daily doses have become a nine week ritual in the morning. First I turn on TCM, then to the computer for the daily dose. Professor Edwards's commentaries sharpened my vision and understanding to carefully look at the whole clip, not just the obvious. I have never posted anything in my life until this class. I now feel comfo
  12. This daily dose is an observation of Mise-en-scene. There is a careful arrangement of the room framing the violence and contrasting the values to the focal point. Even the placement of the record player mirroring the vinyl going round and round ,to the framed print of Michelangelo's Bound Slave struggling to get free. Then on the opposite wall, we have a framed strong warden( sadistic captain) proudly holding a pose. I would have never paid attention to the placement of objects and arrangement of things in a movie before this class. Art is seeing, thanks for sharpening the lenses.
  13. Who would have thought Perry Mason (Raymond Burr) a real "heavy", bad guy? Clenched fists coming at you is powerful camera work. The off side beating, hitting sounds, puts the viewer right there after every punch. The pendulum swinging light was extremely effective (time is running out). The collaboration of the director and cinematographer were definitely in sync. I'm looking forward to this film, I can't believe I've never seen it.
  14. The cool jazz sounds of Miles Davis are definitely seductive. I did an experiment and watched this clip muted to see if I could imagine the same seduction play out without the sounds. It seemed rather innocuous, just lovers setting up a rendezvous at some bar. The jazz playing its lonely sad music leads us to believe that there is an evil plot involved for this liaison.
  15. "Keep the pot boiling", I guess we are in for it in "Beware, My Lovely". O.K. we have Robert Ryan in a tie doing chores, got to love the 50s. He is very thorough in completing his work. He carefully folds and puts thing back where they belong, (maybe its Military training or something). We know this can't be good when he starts opening doors. The music changes rapidly, frozen with fear, he escapes just in time for the train. Flashbacks of a full speed train aiming right towards him- All the Noir elements are present- can't wait.
  16. It seems since film noir had been around for more than a decade, the film makers and writers had to ramp up the genre, (been there, done that). I can see the exaggerated dialogue from the younger, cynical, goal oriented detective in contrast with the somewhat older detective that is more relaxed, humorous to just another routine job. The noir elements are present: night scene, train,city sign(Chicago),Fedora and trench coat detectives. I guess things had to evolve to a parody or "burlesque" as more of the films were made in the 50's. I still like them even more now because of this course.
  17. I share your same sentiment about this course ending. I've enjoyed every bit of it and I'm glad I had the opportunity to devout so much time to reading and watching the films. I will never look at these films the same way. I enjoyed your post too!
  18. We(the viewers) are definitely going down a winding road in "Too Late for Tears". It appears to be a typical couple heading out for a dinner with "friends" when the wife expresses her dislike for the host's wife (His diamond studded wife). She is complaining, wanting to go back home when a sudden hurtling bag lands in the backseat of the couple's car. That mere act was like a switch that turned things around. Lisbeth Scott's face(her whole demeanor) physically changed before our eyes when the contents of the bag was revealed. Greed now becomes her mission. No longer is she going to be the wif
  19. I have enjoyed the daily doses of darkness this week. Each clip showing a desperation, fear and terror. I read some of the posts on the message board and agree with the observations. However I would like to comment on "The Stranger on the third floor". I would have never known about this film if you (Richard Edwards) hadn't suggested the articles by John and Stephanie Blaser. I agree that it has the elements of a noir film (without the hard boiled detective hero). There was more emotion from the main character than from the controlled detectives of film noir, but the shadows ,camera angles,
  20. This week's material was packed full of great information. I neglected my other duties to learn everything you offered. I look forward to Fridays for a full day of Noir Films. I've seen all of these films several times, but I'm looking at them for the first time. Thank you!
  21. I love this film, it is my year. It is casted perfectly. All of the Noir elements are present. I've seen this movie before, but not with educated eyes and an understanding of the Noir films. I've always loved them, but didn't know why. I love this course.
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