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Ken R

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About Ken R

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  1. I kept thinking of Mrs. Danvers in Rebecca. This scene is about Mabel’s accusation and its effect on those involved. Her movement is minimized – she is sitting when the young men walk into the room and she makes us aware of her by dropping her purse and gathering full attention, becoming the literal fulcrum of the scene. The movement into the headmaster by the boys almost moves all of the elements into her control. There is, at times a stage bound quality – the toy men aligned in a single plane, but this works as well because Mabel is going to select one of them and to us they are all equa
  2. This is a scene of a man being driven mad with paranoia while trying to maintain a vener of propriety. As he is being told about his responsibilities as a fighter, his mind wanders to the next room (“Is it a window or a mirror?” we wonder, reality or imagination and we’re never really sure as the camera takes us from what seems like a discernible reality of a party, complete with flappers and flowing hootch, back to our guy who is being driven crazy while trying to maintain a sense of propriety. The entire sequence (at least void of context) is entirely reminiscent of Rear Window in what
  3. To be literal, blond curls appear in both films clips examined here -- themes of voyeurism are pretty clear with the crowd reactions in both. This is more externally energized crowd reacting to the discovery of the corpse, but we are involved in their energy in both clips. The performances here are much more focused, and less general than in the Pleasure Garden, the actors don't seem the least bit capricious in their choices -- they are being directed with specifics, it seems. There are almost two identical stories being told of the spread of energy from the micro to the macro; we discov
  4. The view from the side of the stage, the chorines' entrance down the staircase into the view of both the stage from the audience point of view then to the audience from the stage point of view is interesting. In the Hitchcock interview in part 1 of the module he talks about staricases which were frequently part of his storytelling. While Vertigo and Psycho are probably the most iconic stair sequences, I always loved the sequence in the remake of The Man Who Knew Too Much where Doris Day is trying to reach her child (singing Que Sera, sera, no less) and the camera moves slowly up the staircase
  5. The opening of the film sets the entire story in motion by establishing the characters, not just as the star players (although Garfield and especially Turner are given star entrances), but exactly as they will move through the film. The opening sets up almost an erotic dream for Garfiled (the farmer's daughter story) that merely intimates the nightmare (certainly the all-white, sensual entrance of Turner makes her seem like some kind of angel of light rather than the femme fatale, she won’t let her hair down, literally or figuratively until later, by which time we know from the entrance n
  6. The sense of voyeurism permeates this scene and becomes meta as we are swept up in Gilda’s show. Film IS voyeurism, but we as an audience are called on it in this scene. We establish the scene with Ford hearing the music and snapping into a fearful/controlling mode as he opens a window to look in at Hayworth -- he knows she has released the Kraken. But it isn’t enough for him – the fear propels him into the club’s main room where in the few cuts away from Hayworth we see the effect she has on others – gaping, leering; when she asks for help, the men become riotous. (There are women in th
  7. This is a scene about asymmetry – a mother/daughter relationship that has become monstrous and out of balance – Mildred has done everything for Veda, and since the youngest child died, has gone way overboard, denying Veda nothing, and in so doing has created a monster, who here has faked a pregnancy in order to blackmail the father. What’s apparent here is how Curtiz uses the visuals to create a sense of both imbalance and order. The elements of the room and particularly the bannister on the stair emphasize our sense of order and chaos. The geometry is omnipresent in the scene. The line
  8. We hear Waldo’s voiceover as if he’s narrating from a distance while we look at a cold, controlled but abundant life – antiques, order, only the ticking clock (life passing, the tell-tale heart leading to the solution) to break the monastic, meticulous mood of silent possessiveness. After hearing in the vo that Laura has been murdered, we meet the obviously out-of-place but easy-to-identify hard-boiled detective whose first movement into this quiet world is first to a series of masks (human guises) then to a wall of glass objects; he seems clearly out of place here – all gumshoe virility
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