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Everything posted by TCM_Film_Fan

  1. I'd be interested in learning more about the Hollywood Blacklist scandal of the 1940s and 1950s.
  2. What a great summer of all things Hitchcock! This course has been incredibly insightful and really gave me a new appreciation for the true master behind the scenes. I wasn't familiar with his silent and/or very early days at all, so it was very enlightening to see clips of films like "The Pleasure Garden," "The Lodger," and "Blackmail," etc. I never even knew they existed until this course! I had stumbled on "Family Plot" in the wee hours of the morning on TCM last summer and loved it. Missed the credits and had no idea it was Hitchcock, so that was one of the many, many things I've learn
  3. I would say "Niagara" from 1953, starring Marilyn Monroe and Joseph Cotten (directed by Henry Hathaway). It seems to have several Hitchcock elements, starting with a famous location and a blonde beauty up to no good.
  4. What actors who are popular today would be considered the "type" Hitchcock would choose for his starring roles?
  5. The opening scene of The Lodger has a frantic, terror-filled vibe, with the first visual of the woman screaming into the camera setting the tone. The crowds seen in The Lodger are clearly lower-class by their attire, while the crowd in Frenzy appears well-dressed and affluent. We see police rushing into action in The Lodger, yet Frenzy has an almost casual feel to the discovery of the body...."Hey, look!" The rolling view over the river into the heart of London is in true Hitchcock POV fashion. We are treated to a fantastic birds-eye view, as we sweep along the river. The regal/royal
  6. The viewer sees expensive items being carefully packed into an exquisite suitcase, which is next to an older piece of luggage where worn clothing is being carelessly tossed. The last item added to her suitcase was bundles of money, which we suspect may be stolen by the scene we are shown. With the fanning of the Social Security cards, we know the character has several identities. It's notable that Hitchcock appears to have an obsession with names starting with "Ma," as we see Martha, Mary, Margaret and Marion on the cards. Of course, the lead character is Marnie, right in line with the oth
  7. The violins are played in a unique way in the opening score, making them sound like motion associated with stabbing (or quick, jolting movement). Coupled with the sharp music, there is a cutting, scissored pattern appearing as the credits roll. The tone is set as frenzied and chaotic, and intentionally makes the viewer uneasy. The mention of day/date is notable, in that we know it's a Friday going into the weekend. The time of 2:43 becomes significant when we hear Marion say that check-out is at three. The viewer once again becomes a voyeur to the hotel room scene. The opening sho
  8. Viewers know Cary Grant's ease at being dashing and charming, even in his off-screen persona, and we almost see a natural attraction between the two. They are well matched in this film, as viewers are treated to two of Hollywood's hottest stars together on screen. It almost doesn't matter what they're saying as we watch them interact. When the camera goes to a close-up of the matchbook cover, we see the ROT initials, and know this prop may be significant later in the story. According to Roger, "O stands for nothing, " which adds a bit of intrigue to his character. Eve is using the mat
  9. The opening images and musical score give the impression that something ominous has happened, or is about to happen. The scrolling figures are hypnotic and trance-like, easily drawing in the viewer's full attention as the credits roll. The plain, square text of the names is a stark contrast to the Lissajous figures. The single most powerful image is the close-up of the eye, just before it spins into the title. The extreme close-ups, along with the other partial images inserted, are meant to make the viewer feel unsettled. This title sequence is a brilliant mix of graphics and
  10. The opening shot shows that a variety of activities, both usual and unusual, are happening in this busy apartment complex. Hitch makes the viewer an immediate voyeur, whether we like it or not! We are not seeing through Jeff's eyes, but rather our own. When the camera pans around his apartment, we can see that Jeff is an accomplished sports/action photographer. We are not certain how his leg or camera got broken, but we assume it was in a dramatic fashion, judging by the pictures we are seeing. We get a humorous touch to his unfortunate situation with the message on Jeff's cast. He app
  11. The crisscrossing of train tracks seems to be a parallel to life, where we find ourselves making split decisions on which paths to follow. The tracks in the shot are all connected, but we know each twist and turn leads to a different destination. The legs crossing and shoes touching seem random and typical on a train, but the viewer senses something more significant about this encounter. Bruno and Guy give off completely different vibes when compared to one another, just from their attire. Bruno presents a flamboyant air about him, with his fancy shoes and flashy suit, while Guy is jus
  12. The viewer is once again seeing through the eyes of the characters on screen. We have classic POV shots, with notably brilliant use of it in moments such as the upside down view of Devlin. Devlin first appears as a dark figure from Alicia's view, but when the camera pans on him speaking, the room is no longer dark. He is sharply dressed and on point, but Alicia has clearly slept in last night's outfit and is dazed. I noted the sparkling of sequins in some shots, which reminds the viewer that she is not in sleepwear. Her large earrings and messed up hair complete the impression that
  13. The close-up of Mrs. Smith's eye under the covers is one of Hitchcock's noted touches. The use of props and panning is also present. Without any dialogue needed, the room service trays laying around set the scene. We can see that the couple has been holed up in a luxury hotel for days, and people are making a fuss about them, which intrigues the viewer to continue watching. I believe it's a typical Hitchcock opening in that it's using the set and camera angles to let the viewer discover (in steps) what is going on. In line with a screwball comedy, the music is lighthearted and whi
  14. In the opening scene, the viewer learns that two men have called upon Charlie at the boarding house. He appears to be pondering over something that has already happened, and is planning his next move. The money strewn all over, as if it had no value, makes the viewer wonder where Charlie got that windfall. The overall dark mood of the film gives it that film noir vibe. One gets the impression that Charlie is dealing with a sinister situation, although we don't have a clue as to what it is yet. The beginning of the clip goes very quickly from an innocent street scene (with "happy" mu
  15. The opening scene is different in that the rush of movement is coming from the ocean water, rather than from people. We see the crashing waves as an indicator that something very dark and mysterious is brewing in this story. In classic Hitchcock POV filming, the viewer experiences the journey on the road to the Manderley estate up close and personal, as the background story is narrated. We are seeing through the eyes of the character as she is approaching the house. Manderley is given life-like qualities with such references as its "staring walls," and it appears to come to life wit
  16. The music in the opening scene makes the viewer feel as if it's a typical, sunny day at the inn, until the two men enter and the mood starts to change. The clock sounds its horn, as if to announce that important news was forthcoming, as we see the desk clerk frantically taking a call. We hear that a train has been delayed, which starts the commotion. Caldicott and Charters were there to add their observations for the viewers, and they had a comedic flair about them. In noting the importance of music in this clip, we learn that the reason they (C & C) have missed their train was that
  17. The opening scene once again draws the audience into a public place with people at all angles. The Music Hall is filled with what looks like working-class people. We see images of a man entering the show, but we do not see his face. He is easily identifiable in the crowd, however, as we see him waiting for Mr. Memory to answer his random question. Yes, I agree that Rothman's character has more innocent qualities about him. His movie-star looks are in sharp contrast to some of the audience members shown. He appears to fit right in among the crowd at the Music Hall, however, making the
  18. This clip leads me to believe the film is more focused on the characters than the plot. One can easily see there is more to Abbott than meets the eye, based on his reaction when he sees the ski jumper up close. Both appear to be giving the signal that they've met before and there is some type of connection. In viewing this clip first, without prior knowledge of the film, I am expecting that Abbott will expose a sinister side the next time we see him. Although he appears jovial, there is something underneath the surface that doesn't match that persona. It was similar in the openings b
  19. In the phone booth, Alice is blocking out the surrounding sounds, while she decides whether or not to call the police. While conversation swirls around her, she appears to be in a trance at the table. Her eyes flicker at every mention of "knife" by the gossipy visitor. It's as if knife is the only word Alice is comprehending, with viewers hearing faint dialogue in between. The viewers can hear "knife" many times over, as we see Alice tipping over the edge. The final, sudden shrill of the woman yelling "knife" causes it to fly from Alice's hand, and gives the audience the feeling that s
  20. The expressions of the main character say it all...the fear and loathing of possibly losing his wife to the man in the mirror. We see others having a grand old time, while he is tortured by the thought of leaving his wife to train for a fight. The visuals of the elongated piano keys and dancing women disappearing in a cloud of dust make things seem suddenly very surreal. We can see the main character's mind is beginning to play tricks on him. The faster tempo of movement towards the end of the clip increased the anticipation of what was going to happen.
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