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Dee Major

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About Dee Major

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  1. Thank you for a great experience -- my first on-line course and it was great fun. And thank you for a last minute reprieve on the course ending deadline, I'm glad I got to officially finish it.
  2. I like this idea: "the absence of expected violence." I much prefer this aspect of near-miss (the hero ducks and the villain gets the pie) rather than the "bonk you on the head/poke you in the eye" retaliation / escalation violence of, say, the Three Stooges.
  3. Thanks for sharing these -- I've never seen a Jackie Chan film but that "Every Frame a Painting" clip makes me want to see more. Really interesting commentary on how he demands a still camera, which frames the space & helps us see the comedy and the fight -- unlike the quick editing style which is confusing. We see the gags in silent films because they didn't use a lot of fancy camera movement and editing. Also excellent evidence of the pauses for reaction and facial expression. And AMAZING stunts! Any recommendation for which Jackie Chan film I should start with?
  4. I just used: http://tinypic.com/ and once it is uploaded, use the last option: "direct link for layouts" Thanks!
  5. That has got to be the oddest silent film I've ever seen! What a hoot!
  6. I just watched the three Chaplin movies ("By the Sea," "Tillie's Punctured Romance," and "A Dog's Life") because I wanted to see the context for the clips you used. Thanks for posting the Internet Archive link on "The Movies" page -- I'd never used it before. What a great resource! https://archive.org/
  7. Very interesting analysis -- would have loved to see even more discussion and examples. I have a historical question: do you know where these particular films were made? I think Mack Sennett was based in the east and filmed in ? New York/New Jersey area? But I remember reading that for a time Charlie Chaplin moved his production to Chicago. There is a studio here in Chicago on Argyle, now St. Augustine College. It was called Essanay and the sign over the door remains -- it has landmark status. Of course, Chicago winters made filming year round difficult so everyone headed to Californi
  8. Classic clown set up involves status: the #1 and the #2, the boss / the servant, the smart one / the dumb one. And we like to see power deflated and the underdog triumph. That's a tradition from way back in commedia, in the circus with ringmaster vs. clown, it's just a great way to get a situation started.
  9. Those are great examples! I love how SLOW and deliberate the actions and reactions are in the Laurel/Hardy/Lupe scene -- and I love that the girl gives as good as she gets. Interesting how they set up a rhythm and then break it. Also clearly an example of the slapstick interrupting the flow of the story. And the second clip: I've always said that I hate the Three Stooges but this clip was so different from anything I've seen -- definitely could use some sound fx to make it more "make believe" but it is so absurd and over the top!
  10. One of the most important differences between regular theatre and clown theatre is that the clown has a direct connection to the audience -- I've always loved that Keaton and Chaplin would do a "take" directly to the camera when they reacted to what just happened. An short pause in the action that draws the audience in...
  11. Great story. This is like observing everyday people when they trip -- how do they react? Look around to see if anyone saw them? pretend it didn't happen? laugh at themselves? The origins of slapstick are found in real life.
  12. What a great example of set up - schtick - blow off or if you prefer, beginning - middle - end of a gag. To me the most important part is the relationship -- high status (gardener) vs. low status (boy). The boy causes mischief that punctures the gardeners authority. Comparing the two versions, I think the second is funnier mostly because the tables turn -- the boy gets sprayed. But also the spanking in the original version is prolonged and repeated which makes it more real and serious. But I agree that the gardener's straw hat being knocked off is a very good visual.
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