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PikachuFilms

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  1. 1. Describe how this opening is different from the multiple opening scenes you have seen in the Daily Doses from the British silent and/or sound period? I would say it's different in the form of the background and the kind of air it has. The opening with the house really does sell this ethereal dream feel about the house and what's around it. It draws you in right there in that moment. 2. What are the Hitchcock "touches" in this opening that help you identify this as a film directed by Alfred Hitchcock? I think the almost first person view we get with the dolly moving through the gates and going along the road would identify as one of his touches. 3. How does this opening sequence use Manderley--the house itself--as a kind of character in the story? What affect does the flashback structure and the voiceover narration have on your experience of this scene? Manderley is kind of a character because of how the narration and the shots of the house give it meaning. There's a presence and air given around it like a character would have. It's like you're getting reintroduced to someone that you were attached to fondly in the past but you have forgotten.
  2. 1. Now that you have seen multiple openings to Hitchcock's British films, how does this opening both fit a pattern you have seen previously as well as deviate from other opening scenes? I think it fits the pattern of really trying to set the tone of the scene or drawing you into the mystery of who the main character or characters are. But its also different because you don't see the main character as a sly figure like in The Lodger as Rothman said. 2. Do you agree or disagree with Rothman's assessment that Hitchcock in this film is focused on introducing a more innocent character than in previous opening sequences of his films? I agree. A night in a music hall watching a show is something that seems more normal and typical for average people. 3. Reflect on the role of yet another public space opening a Hitchcock film--this time a music hall--the prominence of a performer (Mr. Memory), and the reactions of the audience in the film to Mr. Memory's act. How does these on-screen elements play into the Hitchcock touch as described by Gene Phillips? They play into telling the audience that this all seems like a normal and ordinary person. You don't get a flashing sign saying that the character is shady or that he's super rich or extremely important in some way. Therefore, later in the movie when he's thrown into peril or serious situations the audience can connect with him more and be intrigued by an "average" man going through these types of situations.
  3. 1. Based on these opening scene, what do you anticipate is going to be more important in this film--the characters or the plot? (It is fine to make an informed guess about the 2nd question if you haven't seen the film yet) I think the characters will be more important than the plot. You're already introduced to a handful of them right of the bat instead of a long intro scene with scenery. 2. What do you learn about Abbott (Peter Lorre) in his brief scene? How might this introduction affect your view of the character Abbott later in the film? He has a light humor about him, but he does have another side to him since he stopped mid sentence when the skier came up. I'm guessing that from Abbott being seen as likable here, any crimes he does later might not seem as bad. He's a likable criminal. 3. We saw two opening scenes from Hitchcock's silent films in the Daily Doses last week (The Pleasure Garden and The Lodger). How is this opening both similar and different from those two films' opening scenes. This opening I think is similar to The Pleasure Garden because of it's since of lightheartedness in the beginning, and it's similar to The Lodger because it directs you to pay attention to the characters. The film is different from them in sense of pacing it feels like. Everything moves quicker.
  4. 1. In this sequence, describe how Hitchcock uses sound design to put you into the subjective "mind of Alice"? Be specific. In this scene he uses the repetition of the lady saying knife over and over to show you how she can't get her mind off of the murder. 2. 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. Well visually you see Alice "calm" as she slowly reaches for the knife to cut the bread. She's uneasy, but she's not physically jumpy or twitching to indicate shes really startled. When you listen to the audio though, it gives you a look at her inner turmoil and the sound isn't steadily increasing either to give you a heads up that she's about to flinch. It just happens which gives the audience a jumpscare. 3. Why do you think this particular use of subjective sound is not used frequently in cinema? I think it's because in today's cinema everything really relies on sound already, so using this exact style has to be used very wisely and carefully to make it really have an impact otherwise it won't work.
  5. 1. In your own words, please describe the effect of watching the POV dolly shots / POV tracking shots in this scene? The use of the POV shots really make you connect to the characters in this scene. You're set up to feel what they feel, for example with the boys you can feel how tense and anxious they are when they're walking up to the headmaster. With Mabel, you could feel almost the power she had as she walked up to the boys before she made her decision. 2. Why do you think Hitchcock uses the technique of a POV tracking shot? What does it add to his visual storytelling? I think he uses it to really make the audience connect with the actors and their characters. It adds more meaning to think story because as he mentioned,film stars were important because whatever situation you put them in the audience is going to feel for them more because they're fans. So using a pov shot in a tense case like this really ramps it up a Bit. 3. What connections (visual techniques, images, motifs, themes) do you notice between films that came before this (The Pleasure Garden, The Lodger) and a film that came after it (The Ring)? Please cite specific examples. In The Pleasure Garden and The Ring, there were points made to see things from characters point of view (i.e. the binoculars scene in The Pleasure Garden and the montages and the mirrors in The Ring). There's always some connection of trying to put the audience in the character's shoes.
  6. 1. How does Hitchcock use montage or expressive editing to add vitality and rhythm to this scene? The quick cuts in the scenes gave you a sense of the party life and made it more upbeat. 2. As is the case with a lot of German Expressionist films, in this scene, there are many shots that are very subjective and put us into the psychological mind of a main character. Please note the various techniques Hitchcock uses to create that feeling of subjectivity. Hitchcock uses the mirror to give you an insight of what the character's main focus is on besides what was going on in the room, which I thought was very cool. Also, when the boxer was thinking about what would happen if he left his wife, you could almost feel his anxiousness because of the editing. The warping of the piano really gave you a feel that to him things were going to fail apart and his relationship wife would "melt away". 3. How does Hitchcock stage the action, use set design, and editing techniques to increase the stakes in the rivalry between the two gentlemen? He used the different settings of the party full of people and the room with only a few of the other boxer's friends to show their personalities and their mindset. You could sense the difference between them through the more anxious boxer's mindset and movement too.
  7. 1. Compare the opening of The Lodger to the opening of The Pleasure Garden - what similarities and differences do you see between the two films? I think that The Lodger and The Pleasure Garden have similarities in where they both immediately bring your attention to a narrow and up close shot of something (i.e. the murder victim and the staircase). This makes you focus on that one thing. As for differences, of course The Lodger sets off a more darker tone right of the bat by showing the woman screaming at the camera. Unlike in The Pleasure Garden where in the beginning you had this more whimsy and carefree air as the chorus girls ran down the stairs. 2. Identify elements of the "Hitchcock style" in this sequence? Please provide specific examples. Even if you are not sure if it is the "Hitchcock style," what images or techniques stand out in your mind as powerful storytelling? Or images that provide an excess of emotion? I would say the scene right after the woman is killed where you could see the crowd leaning over to try to get a good look at her was very interesting, because of how the death was shot. The movie opens and bam you see her horrified face, then bam she's dead. There's nothing else to it, it's a shock that makes you go "Wait a minute what happened?". Almost like when you're reading a book and a character dies out of nowhere and you have to spend a moment trying to process everything. Especially since it was such an up close shot, there's no panning away or a very wide angle for you to remotely even think about she could get away, so you're just left hanging, but interested just like the crowd. 3. Even though this is a "silent" film, the opening image is one of a woman screaming. What do you notice in how Hitchcock frames that particular shot that makes it work in a silent film even though no audible scream that can be heard. And what other screams like that come to mind from Hitchcock's later work? As I mentioned in question number two, I think the narrow perspective makes the scene work so well. And I know a lot of people have referenced this but this really reminds me of Psycho and it's shower scene.
  8. 1. I would guess that I could see the beginning of HItchcock's touch here. To be completely honest, I've seen a good amount of Hitchcock's movie's but I guess I never actually really gave my up-most attention what the "Hitchcock Touch" is. Although the scene where the man with the binoculars is so fixated with the chorus girl and his perception is narrowed is very familiar. 2. Yes. I do agree that the the themes you can see in this clip are definitely shown throughout his career. 3. Not at all! I think the choice of music and energy from the actors and actresses gave you enough of an understanding of what's going on. A good movie doesn't have to have any dialogue for it to be understood or move you. At least that's what I feel. (Thanks for reading! I'm just a person that just only recently decided to study film so I might not know much but Im glad to learn more!)
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