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Gilda

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  1. Thank you Prof. Edwards! I myself do not always have things in my life all together "on time" so I am not upset at all if things are not right on the dot! I just go with the flow. As you have said, we have until Aug. 7, so it is very flexible. Bravo to you and Wes!
  2. Someone mentioned Niagara, it reminds me of Hitchcock. We fear for the "crazy" husband, Joseph Cotton. We know his wife is fooling around on him. He tries to tell people his wife is trying to have him killed. The audience knows it. Like "the wronged man". When the wife wakes up from her sedated sleep, there is a famous bell tower playing a song. (Hitch used famous places). It's a vacation spot where everyone is supposed to be happy, but we know that isn't true. There is a twist, where the wife is disappointed and almost driven mad. I do love Niagara. Another film that reminds me of Hitch is The Night of the Hunter. We know that Mitchum's character is a killer (suspense) but the children and their mother don't know it. And the MacGuffin is the doll with money hidden in it. POV shots, such as the boy's looking out of the barn and seeing the preacher riding the horse, and the shadows also recall Hitch. I have to say I enjoyed this course very much!! Thank you Prof. Edwards
  3. I love Rope! I love the interaction between the characters. I like Granger's acting so much, his tension is almost coming off of the screen! He freaks out finally, and what a performance. I think it may have been neglected because of the gruesomeness of the cold-blooded murder in the beginning. I remember my mother saying how awful that was. Almost as bad as the shower scene in Psycho, just to think that someone would kill someone like that may have been troubling to some viewers.
  4. I like almost all of the Hitchcock films! I have watched them with my son when he was about 10 years old. At that time, I thought there were only a few Hitchcock movies! (The Birds, Psycho, you know~ the "biggies") Boy, was I in for a surprise! And this was before internet, so it was tough to know how many films he did unless you went to a library. Ok, here goes, my top 5: 1. Psycho (always watch it when it's on) 2. Strangers on a Train (love Guy and Bruno interacting, also Bruno's mom is so hilarious. The plot is so inventive! The creepiness of Bruno "stalking" Guy in Washington, D.C.) 3. North By Northwest (the suave villain , James Mason, Cary Grant , plot is fabulous! , and the music!!) 4. Rebecca (Story and the cast~~George Sanders perfect, Fontaine excellent) 5. Rope (love the interaction between Farley Granger and John Dall, when Granger freaks out and says "Cat and mouse...!) Runners up: Lifeboat (what other director could do this?) Vertigo The Birds Rear Window There are so many. I watch them whenever they are on, if I can. I appreciate his early films, but so far none have topped my faves !
  5. 1. Uncle Charlie seems careless about money, as mentioned before. Brooding, intelligent. He is well-dressed, has a cigar, and seems to enjoy the finer things in life. he is handsome and stylish. it seems unusual for a man who looks so well-bred to be in such a "seedy" place. he seems nonchalant about the fact he is being followed. But, has some inner anger which shows when he throws the glass. We get the idea he must have done something wrong, but maybe not too serious. Maybe stole the money. That landlady must have gotten on his nerves! He seems sinister because of his quietness and calm, when we know he must be some sort of sociopath~~glib, yet hiding a hatred for the world. 2. It made me think of film noir because of the shadows, especially when the landlady pulls the blinds. The ominous music and the camera angles also point to film noir. Also the feeling of desperation below Charlie's calm exterior is a trait of film noir. In The Killers, Burt Lancaster is also in a shabby room, but he is dressed rather shabbily (t-shirt ) and he does not look too well groomed. He looks anxious waiting for the men who will kill him. Definitely shadows in his room when the boy comes to warn him. Somehow I felt sympathy for Burt in this role. He is resigned to his fate (noir-esque) vs. Charlie trying to run away. 3. Tiomkin's score uses the Merry Widow Waltz with variations. It may give a clue to what Charlie has done. I like how dramatic the music gets when something is about to happen. The music is sometimes cheerful, sometimes foreboding. There is no music when we learn what the landlady has to tell Uncle Charlie. This is one of my favorite films. I've always liked Joseph Cotten. He usually plays a stand-up, good guy. I was hoping that he would be "good" in this movie, and that all the clues against him would turn out to be wrong. I loved the interplay between Teresa Wright (Charlie) and Uncle Charlie (Cotten). She was good (light), and he seems the opposite (dark). So much suspense during the whole film! As does Dr. Edwards, I love the part where he calls the rich women "animals" and looks almost right into the camera. I didn't know Cotten could play so malevolent! I also like the part where he tells little Charlie that the world is a "foul sty". Brilliant! I wonder if Hitch really felt that way.
  6. 1. The opening scene is different because it's not a public place or someplace where people are screaming (The Lodger). It's just a winding road, though a bit ominous. 2. The foreboding house, deep in shadow, is a Hitchcock touch. We know something awful happened there. The Olivier character standing over the sea, we almost get his POV of the sea. The ordinary, plain girl is about to be thrown into a very mysterious situation. For example: husband is secretive and moody, housekeeper malevolent, plus Fontaine's character knows "nothing" about being a "great lady" (insecurity) . She has no idea she will be subjected to psychological torment by all the comparisons to Rebecca. 3. Manderley is important in the film and therefore is like a character. Maxim clearly loves the house, as does Mrs. Danvers. It also seems to have eyes and a personality of it's own, very dark and cold. Very large, impersonal rooms. The flashback makes the viewer want to watch what has happened to the narrator and the house. It reminds me of the film, Gaslight, where the heroine is swept off her feet in the South of France, then comes home to near-tragedy. I really love this film. I thought George Sanders was perfect as the gossipy "cousin". The only thing that irritated me was the fact that Fontaine's character never seems to tell Maxim about the disrespectful treatment by Mrs. Danvers, and how Mrs. Danvers wanted her to commit suicide! A husband and wife would surely share confidences, in my opinion. But maybe because Maxim was such a "tortured soul", she didn't want to bother him. I would have had Mrs. Danvers fired! But I am not the author of the story; it is Hitch's story and Danvers had to be in it till the end.
  7. 1. The film opens in a public , raucous place. It is a place for fun, and as mentioned before, a lower class of people. It is different than The Man Who Knew Too Much because the opening scene is indoors, not outside at a posh ski resort. Robert Donat is immediately known by the viewer to be different, set apart, by his gentlemanly manner. The opening scene reminded me of a film noir. 2. Yes, I agree. The opening character in The Lodger was the murderer and the frightened townsfolk. The opening characters in TMWKTM were various innocent folks but we still didn't know which one to focus on. Also the villain showed up early (Lorre). 3. The Everyman thrust into an unpleasant situation, part of the Hitchcock touch. Also the public places where sinister things are going on. Now I'm going to watch 39 Steps :-)
  8. I like the part of Strangers on a Train where Bruno laughs at his mother's painting! Also when she asks if he has taken his vitamins, he says , "Yes, mother, a whole fifth!". Their relationship was sort of a dark comedy.
  9. In this sequence, describe how Hitchcock uses sound design to put you into the subjective "mind of Alice"? Be specific I think Hitchcock was very creative using the gossipy woman's use of the word "knife", having it repeated louder and louder, with the other words sort of a visual blur. Sound had just begun and Hitch already knew some tricks! He was showing us how she heard the gossip's words in her head. Alice's eyebrows would rise very slightly every time the woman said "knife". So the viewer knew what nervous strain Alice was under, just by the use of the dialog of the gossip, who also had an unpleasant voice and appearance. Not a sympathetic role to play. Describe the different ways that the sound design of this scene operates in counterpoint to the visual track. For example, how does Hitchcock set up the shot where the knife flies out of Alice's hand so that it registers a shock in his audience? Pay attention to both what is happening visually and aurally. Be specific The camera keeps showing Alice's hand reaching for the knife, and then showing her face. She is hesitant to pick up the knife. In her head, the gossip says the word "knife" louder and louder and it all builds the tension. Finally the knife flies out of Alice's hand, from being anxious and hearing the word "knife" over and over. It happens so suddenly, it shocks the viewer. Why do you think this particular use of subjective sound is not used frequently in cinema? It's a subtle use of sound. People are so used to sound and dialog in films now. Also as Ben says on TCM, "we didn't know how to blow up things then". I don't know for sure. But it did remind me of the talkative woman in "Brief Encounter", where the main character had to listen to her shallow friend talk on and on as she was going through a crisis. Also reminded me of the movie "Shine", when the protagonist was having a nervous breakdown while he was playing a difficult piece, and the there was no sound as his hands moved across the piano keys. That was showing how he was so overwrought in his mind.
  10. I noticed the materialism/consumerism theme when Jane Palmer tells her husband that her family was "white collar poor". That explains why she had that hunger for luxuries that she had seen and knew existed, versus "really" poor people who didn't know about what the "haves" really had (except through films). Even today, I see children who have never seen a mailbox or a closet or a doorbell. To them, those items are not even on the radar, because they live in such poverty. So they would not be as greedy as Jane Palmer. On another note, I was born in 1959, and I loved my childhood. My mom was wonderful and Dad was an engineer and was a good provider. But after this lesson, and the assigned readings, I am rather depressed because I feel the world was really made worse and messed up after the war!
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