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Cineman76

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  1. Most definitely we see that this movie will be a character driven piece. As we are introduced to Lorre's character he first appears quite jovial and even kindly if not a bit foreign and intriguing but when the skater comes in up close you see both of them are familiar to each other and in a way that is not desirable. The key word awkward does well to punctuate this. Again similar to the other films mentioned we have spectators and action, a crowd and perspective that draws back into tight shots of our main characters. We do have a bit less of a concentration on body parts be it the legs or eyes and more of a group shot now.
  2. As the gossiper continues prattling on we start to hear the sound of her voice tone down and out until the key word and sound is her shrill of Knife over and over and as we even get used to it (as its Alice's view that this word is the focus), suddenly the frame changes as Knife is uttered again at a startling level and we are shocked by the way the instrument flies out of her hand visually. This all allows us to experience the subjective mindset of our character Alice. Visually we witness a normal scene of breakfast, customers and familiarity but we are assaulted as we take in the subjective view of Alice and experience her minds ear view of knife repeated and the startled reaction of the bell indicating a new customer. At odds these counterpoints make it easy to feel her tension and sets up the scene to scare us when the knife is dropped. I think there is little of this now used in cinema for a few reasons. It can pull you out of an emersion of the story, there are other techniques to now use to obtain the same effect and at the time sound was so new and experimental it was easier to manipulate the audience in this fashion versus now.
  3. As the young waitress is choosing between which boy to blame for her claimed pregnancy we can feel the same amount of dread the boys are as the dolly shot closes in on them then playing with our emotions switched point of view to the accuser. This is a very effective way to draw the audience in. We also see similar shots and themes as we had in other of his movies, The Lodger etc, such as close ups of the eyes, dancing and records signifying emotion and sex, and close ups that bring the face into the foreground. Again for me there was a sense of suspense with the shot but even more so one of dread.
  4. We see Hitchcock use music, dancing, the speed of the record and position of characters to represent and express the inner conflict and turmoil of our young boxer as he observes his wife and opponent getting cozy through the well placed mirror. Eventually these images where it appears his lover is getting to close to his enemy and where the dancers represent the fighters themselves start to appear in ghostlike editing effects showing our young boxers emotions reaching a crescendo. We see him at this point enter the "ring" and approach his opponent and wife to only realize he has given in to his own fears and he apologizes and quickly retreats to be reminded he has a chance to be champion eventually. Placing our wife and husband across corners with the mirror as their connecting point is brilliant and we see in the ring of life how there are more opponents than just our literal one.
  5. 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? We have again tight shots drawing our attention in on the subject of both films, though this time it is one lone figure spread out on the ground, obviously a victim and definitely female versus a group of live young females scurrying about. Then we are drawn again tight into the face of the witness as she explains to first the police and then to our new selection of voyeurs that are crowding in to view the victim and hear of the tragedy. We have cuts from victim to police to witness and crowd that keeps the action continuing. We see again that we fit in as voyeurs ourselves watching the crowd watching the action. The ticker tape style writing is this time a bit more cryptic and not straight forward and also very technical looking as well to emphasize seriousness and authenticity to this being a big story that has everyone on the wire for updates and excitement even of the dark variety. We sense a frantic vibe from the crowd, witness and later even from the machines as they crank out the news of this killer. 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 find that the juxtaposition between the use of organic human facial features such as with the witness recounting her story and the cold hard machinations of the printing press so frenzied that is seems too alive and high strung with anxiety as it works to get the news of the murders to the populace is very effective at taking two subjects and using them to form a third idea as covered in the notes about montage. The easy way one of the crowd members distorts his image in the truck mirror also stands out as it elongates his features making him look like the attacker enough to startle the witness even more. We are viewing an outward stimulation that is not what it seems but enough of an expression of what to fear that it evokes that same fear. 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? We see in the opening image of a woman screaming a concentration on both her eyes and mouth in a way that conveys a type of scream that comes from deep dark fear. The closeup concentrating on the facial features instead of any action below the body makes it almost impossible to not imagine that scream and how it would convey with sound added. We have a sense of what torture the victim is in without really and truly seeing any other movement in frame. Of course this brings to mind the shower scene of Psycho and reminds me of how many adults even swore they remember the slash marks and visuals of the victim in it being so very gory when actually watching it for the first time in my life I noticed the true horror of that scene was in her face not the actual stabbing at all. That sheer terror, that pain, was completely dependent on that close up view of the scream and even in a film with sound like Psycho we didn't need any true volume to affect us when visually it was resounding on its own. Of course I find both pieces of film to benefit form their musical scores.
  6. 3. I think the limitation in no sound might exist but as a fan of silent I find the young woman's quip to the man written, the themes we discussed in the shot and the directors touch still very effective signs of things to come. The camera and dialogue still scream Hitchcock.
  7. 2. I as stated in my answer to number 1 agree we see his touch and will come to see more of it as time goes by and in many unconnected films such as Rear Window vs The Birds.
  8. I most definitely see the beginnings of both shots and scenes that will exist in Hitchcock's bag of cinematic tricks to come as well as themes and even objects such as the binoculars that we will encounter over the next 50 years. We observe as observers the observers of the young women coming down the staircase as it fills our and the male clients field of vision and singles out the concentration for the shot while making sure we do not forget we are as much voyeurs as the gentlemen in the crowd. I think it's interesting to see as well the woman asleep while the boorish men make a spectacle of them selves captivated by the beauty before them. We encounter a feminine view of male behavior in his movies to come through that brief glance of her snoozing in boredom such as in the birds from Annie and our heroine laying judgement on the hero's own behavior toward women. We also see and know that voyeuristic admiration of the female form and those legs will come up again throughout Hitchcock's work. We see this later in Psycho and Rear Window of course.
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