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About Rasulka

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  1. Hi Everyone: RE: CERTIFICATE - To those who previously received an email but could not open the certificate, TRY AGAIN NOW ! I thought to try once more after time passing, and I now was able to open and access my Certificate. Congratulations to those who passed!!
  2. Hello Professor and All: NO CERTIFICATE downloadable from the email being sent to me and others who completed the Film Noir course. The CANVAS SITE - no longer carries the Film Noir Course or any connection to contact you Professor. How can I and other students get their certificate? I am sure I am one of many. Thank you!
  3. The Jazz of Miles Davis contributes an additional layer to the visual style of Elevator to the Gallows. It does this by contrasting the visual style of the opening scene. The Jazz focuses the direction of the ‘elevator’ down, and sets the mood for what is waiting: doom in the gallows. It does this as the dialogue and visuals are focused upwards – to the heights of passion and tall buildings. The music sets a fatalistic mood to the characters – one of resignation and even welcoming. In short, the Jazz is taking the peaks of passion and pulling it down to its ultimate resolution. The dissonance is intense, heady, and painfully Noir.
  4. Salvation Army Set Up: No Salvation The Handyman Walter scratches the dirt of the window, revealing the horrific realism to come. He dumps out the dirty water, turning on the hot water to clean it. However, we are told he will not be able to clean it or anything, for when he discovers the dead woman he leaves the water running as he escapes – a symbolic “no amount of water” is going to clean this Noir mess. He makes his escape across a jarring, disorienting, endless morass of railroad tracks, he jumps into a moving train car – his image hidden in the smoke. He has entered the Noir universe and the train of salvation will be no salvation at all!
  5. Noir Conventions Burlesqued? The Noir smoke is dead for this detective. In the cab, Detective Brown comments that his partner’s “Cigar is Dead”. Detective Brown then adopts his ‘Crystal Ball’ persona and presumes the woman they are about to pick up is a ‘dish’: “I don’t have to wonder, I know.” Imagining her, he reaches into his coat, pulls out his gun and checks its readiness – already prepared for the ‘dame’ that I assume is the femme fatal. Detective Brown seems an anti-Noir protagonist. He views an unlit cigar with potential for heat and smoke as dead. And he rejects the potential heat and smoke of the arriving femme fatal - already put out with his ‘poison under gravy’ presumptions and ‘getting it ready’ gun at his chest. In short, our Detective has rejected the heat, the fire, the smokiness of classic Noir.
  6. The Harp Music – Noir foreshadowing. The use of harp music both frames and foreshadows the key Noir action. As soon as the clock strikes 10 AM – Foster starts the second hand on his watch, and its runs for one minute. The harp music commences at 10:00 AM and stops at 10:01 AM. The use of the Harp brings fluidity, motion, action …. The foreshadowing that some action will take place within the confines of that one minute. The armored car guard exiting the Bank with gun in hand - open and pointed – also foreshadows that crime is afoot and will take place in the future: within this one momentous minute.
  7. Nothing like blood spatter in Black and White! Watching the film fight – I thought how easier it is to watch the violence of boxing if shot in black and white. Then, Noir delivered me a punch, in the form of Ernie’s face down at the mat – blood spatter dripping from his eye. One could feel the wetness of the blood and see every splat and spot and dot of blood …. WOW! I never realized the impact of blood shaded in Noir. Six Successive Screen Shots – a great set-up! Karlson shoots six close-ups in succession: TV Ernie Ernie and TV Pauline and Ernie Pauline Ernie and TV They appear to stage the relationships amongst these three characters. Meet TV. Meet Ernie. Ernie and TV is the primary relationship. TV is Ernie’s inner self and it is full of substance - boxing, the masculine identity and sensitivities, ambition, power, notions of win or lose. Meet Pauline and Ernie. In this relationship, “something’s wrong with his eye.” His focus is not on Pauline. See Pauline alone. See Ernie and TV (the end). I have not seen 99 River Street. This series of shots conveys to me: Ernie will have a struggle with himself, his inner self – for he looks at the TV with a scarred, twitching eye. And, he will end up at best alone (without Pauline) or something worse (because of Pauline). Pauline may be a femme fatale - She equates her position to Ernie as “rhinestones around a ten dollar movement’!
  8. Sam: Lately or Mostly? This phrase glued my attention. If I were to see nothing further of this clip, I am led to think that Sam is going to veer from ‘mostly’ (a gamble) to ‘lately’. Whatever the ‘lately’ is - I feel it is going to be THE story. Sam: You know how it is …You keep something in your mind since you’re a kid (referring to Martha). The mystery: Is Martha the ‘lately’ that Sam will soon be drawn into? Or is this the ‘lately’ that Sam has been planning? In short, it feels like whatever Sam’s ‘lately’ is, it will translate into Martha and Walter’s unanticipated gamble – for according to Walter, even a ‘sure thing’ are odds to gamble on.
  9. This may be “the best unknown American film noir of the classic era”. The clip has deep Noir substance unlike what I have seen prior. The lighting in the scene is neither daylight nor dark, but dusk - that in-between, transitional period of light that harkens a new night … a new darkness …a new eve. The looming car stops at the 3.5 Mile marker, at 8:32 pm – just past the half hour. The symbolism seems to convey that our innocents, Jane and Alan, are approaching a midway point – a transitionary post. Jane instinctively seeks to 'turn around and go back', perhaps back to pre-war times. Nonetheless, they are on the eve of new times. They even decide to turn around, but cannot – destiny of the times intervenes. As they drive towards a party of class conscious, ‘diamond-studded’ society, high on the hill, they are forced to confront the new times when a car throws a bag of cash at them. “Maybe it fell at them?” No, Janes insists “It was thrown” at them. This is a foreshadowing of the new consumerism that will be thrown at society, and literally forced upon it. The moment they view the cash – warning comes – in the form of the approaching car, flashing its lights on and off, on and off. Jane now takes the wheel and off they go. This clip of Too Late for Tears seems to indicate a style, substance, and essence … an unknown “caught us by surprise” essence. This essence captures both the very elements leading to the end of Film Noir, and the accompanying feeling to that end, namely that it is now ‘Too Late for Tears’.
  10. If Film Noir is Noir by virtue of the emotional response it is designed to elicit, than Hitchcock is indeed in a unique class. The mere utterance of the words - Hitchcock or Hitchcock film - elicits an immediate, emotional, gut wrenching, uneasy, and disturbed quality of feeling. It is a feeling we ALL share, instantly, like a communal tasting. Noteworthy, a person need not see numerous Hitchcock films for an imprint on their psyche. One need only experience ONE Hitchcock film - and a person can identify with that old, Hitchcock feeling!
  11. Will this walk ever end?!! Yes…in homicide. The music definitely captures a ‘disoriented person in a confused world that he can’t accept.’ The music begins by evoking a grand, epic duel. It then twists into a sense of ridiculous hopefulness, making Bigelow appear as if he’s skipping along. The music then turns again – an ‘end of duel’ tone that resolves upon entering the Homicide Office. The Noir motif is set. An existential, duel-with-life-itself crisis awaits Bigelow. Get ready for a leap of faith into the absurd. For when asked “who was murdered” Bigelow holds a long, long, long pause, as if he himself cannot believe the absurd words he is about to utter: “I was”.
  12. Social Commentary short, direct, and to the point: “Pile out you Tramps! It’s the end of the line!” Women are things to pile up and throw out. Are all these women tramps? Tramp: a woman who has sex with many different men. These women are not tramps but a collective symbol of the femme fatale in all her glory. They are received as powerful, rebellious, women who are moving into male-dominated space: the prison. Not surprising, the noir story line here plays the femme fatale as victim. For a ‘tramp’ has to be put in her place.
  13. The substance of Noir is revealed: Lighting: The car pulling up with two headlights against utter blackness feels like the piercing eyes of an unknown wild animal revealing itself in the night. The lighting of the hitch-hiker’s thumb is quickly darkened out – making his hand look like a closed fist ready to exert power. Staging: The blowing wind could really be felt as I viewed the feet of an unknown. It conveyed coldness and desolation. The gun represents the hitch-hiker before we see the hitch-hiker’s face in the light. The gun represents him as he stands behind the trunk, for it is the only thing we see of him. The use of ‘we’ by the hitch-hiker injects a sense of complicity for the viewer – “This is how we get out... We all get out same side… We’re gonna open the trunk.’ The hitch-hiker’s stolid, emotionless face is a constant until he says with an icy smile: “So do I” referring to his penchant for killing.
  14. Themes: One’s last breath, last acts of desperation, this Noir world’s last … something. The sense of finality derives from Cathy’s constant inability to catch her breath. Her breathing echoes sex and death. She is so desperate she throws her entire self in front of Detective Hammer’s car. And yet, this still is not sufficient to save Cathy. Hammer tells her: “Thumb isn’t good enough for you - you gotta use your whole body.” The meaning is in the metaphor: Cathy can’t save herself - she will sacrifice not a thumb but her life. Hammer won’t stop his car, his world for minor sufferings of Cathy. But he ultimately will stop his car, his entire existence because Cathy dies. I love the point at which Nat King Cole’s I’d Rather Have the Blues starts playing – the moment Cathy enters Hammer’s car. It is foreshadowing and meaning in that Hammer would rather explore the dark, Noir ‘somethings’ that ultimately reveal themselves by virtue of Cathy, than play it safe. I see the opening credits as not only moving in reverse, but descending into Noir.
  15. What makes Harry Lime's (Orson Well's) "entrance" so effective? It is a great entrance and exit! Like a cat with 9 lives, Harry too appears to have 9 lives! After his formalistic - realistic burial, Harry's second life is signaled with that zither music. "Come out, come out wherever you are!" adds a playful sense of mystery to match the mood of the music. Harry is framed in the doorway in complete blackness, except for three formalistic lighting shots: shoes, face, and ear. Shoes (black & white) are lit in shadowy fashion making it hard to make them out. Harry's face is key-lit in an angular fashion - dancing in a sea of subtle sinister black. The left side of his face is cast in a vertical black shadow. This demarcates and higlights his ear - again dancing in a sea of black. The shoes are a foreshadow to Harry's "running shadow" - with clomping wet footsteps - that vanishes into the black and white Vienna night. His face and ear (coupled with smirk) lead me to think Harry is playing a game of "See No Evil, Speak No Evil, Hear No Evil!" As Joseph Cotton follows Harry's shadow to the fountain, the zither music plays in a much softer tone in the background - as if Harry's presence also lingers in the background of the street. The music stops as Harry and the other men look, listen, ..... then the zither alarm sounds! They run to Harry's exit: a camouflaged doorway, that leads down a wet spiral staircase that fades down into the sewers. This shot looks like a very scary, bottomless pit! Follow Harry as he takes a slow, wet descent into Noir.
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