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Everything posted by ArianaRosel15

  1. I'm not sure I can agree with Canby saying something is missing from today's comedy, because that sounds like saying that today's comedies are somehow less. The difference I see, is essentially my part as the viewer. Today's films are performances for us, the audience. In "A Dog's Life" as in many of Chaplin's films, we aren't so much the audience as we are in on the gag. We can see what Chaplin is doing when he's sneaking bits of cake of the counter, or slipping through holes in a fence to evade the cops. We're co-conspirators with Chaplin. We're almost part of the gag. I feel mor
  2. This opening scene in Elevator to the Gallows, could be the first scene in any of a dozen different genres, except for that incredible jazz score. Two lovers on the phone making plans to run away together and be free, sounds so happy and hopeful. What could possibly go wrong? Then, the first notes play, and we are instantly transported to the dark shadowy world of film noir. The music is powerfully lonely and sad. Nothing visually suggests that this love affair is going to go horribly wrong, but Miles Davis' haunting score gives us all the clues we need to know that this isn't the ho
  3. I see a lot of familiar noir elements in the way Howard is framed in the opening shots of Beware My Lovely. We first see him through a screen, a broken screen. He's patched it, but he is clearly shown as a man on the fringes of society in this shot, a man on the outside looking in. As we follow Howard inside the house, the significance of the Salvation Army Band becomes clear, in that we are to think about people falling on hard times. Times appear so hard for Howard that he is "reduced" to performing menial tasks around the house for a woman more well off than he. The shot where he
  4. The detective in this scene from Narrow Margin know what to expect from our femme fatale, just like the audience. It's almost like we are sharing an inside joke with the characters. As if to say, we've both been here before and we know what this "dame," this "60 cent dish" is all about. We've seen the trains, the back seats of cabs, the trench coats and dark city streets before. This opening scene seems to say that we know where this is going, so hold our bags because it's only going to be an hour before this story is over and the train leaves the station.
  5. Strangers on a Train is dramatically different from many of the other films noir we've watched, in that it is so light and airy. The scene begins in a crowded, bright train station. We aren't immediately gripped by panic, as in Kiss Me Deadly. The pace of this scene is so normal, passengers moving purposefully towards their destination, not the death knell pace like we saw in D.O.A. There is a vague sense of something about to happen as both sets of shoes are walking towards each other, two men on a crash course of sorts. And the train turning down the tracks, gives a sense of someth
  6. This opening is perfect for a film about a women's prison because we are Eleanor Parker. We are caged inside the transport van, looking out through a barred window trying to figure out where we are going and why. When the van arrives at it's destination and the guard says "end of the line" it's as if he's speaking directly to us. As we gaze for the last time at the outside world, our faces mirror the look of horror and dread on Eleanor Parker's face. We are just as terrified as she, asking what are we doing in this awful place and isn't this some sort of mistake. It really seems as t
  7. Instead of being the "desperate flip side" to the Maltese Falcon, this opening scene actually reminded me a bit of that film. Mike is nearly run off the road by a woman who is clearly afraid of something. By his casual attitude and way he speaks to her, he doesn't seem overly compassionate, but, this reminds me of Sam Spade saying that when a man's partner is killed, he's supposed to do something about it. Mike seems resigned to the fact that when a woman is running down the side of the road, so desperate to escape something that she's not even wearing shoes, he's supposed to do something a
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