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About joant

  • Rank
    Advanced Member
  • Birthday May 26

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  • Gender
  • Location
    Woodstock NY
  • Interests
    FILMS: Noir, Hitch, sci-fi (intergalactic or psychologic), psychological or any good film!
    BOOKS: Classic or current
    TV: guilty pleasures
    Coffee, tea, good conversation.

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  1. Hi how are you doing. School has started. I’m just dealing with my MS. Good news and good doctor finally. Send me a letter. Please  


  2. You just read my mind. I love Tim Burton. And the rest of your list. I will add a titles designer category: Pablo Ferro. He worked with Kubrick quite often and my friend Douetta (Douy) Swofford. You can google both if you are interested.
  3. I imagine all of these have been mentioned but.....here goes. Cape Fear suspense originally storyboarded by Hitch David Lynch weirdness - Twin Peaks - Mulholland Drive tension The tracking shots in The Shining Brian de Palma e.g. Body Double (the film!) Killing Kevin Spacey off in LA Confidential and Alec Baldwin stars killed of early in a film to name two. I have many more rolling around in my brain but I’ve got to shut it down so I can unwind and get to sleep. It was a wonderful day today Professor. I owe you an email!!
  4. Hello again Mr. Philippe and Professor Edwards, I've been reading about Hitchcock on my time off. I have found many journalists and biographers and people on the street believe Hitchcock was a very disturbed man, because of his recurring subjects: i.e. murders, fear, taboo activities, portrayals of women (blondes), voyeurism, etc. Sometimes, I think his mind may have been a dangerous neighborhood to wander through. Do you believe he was neurotic and was able to turn his neurosis into art? I know this may be a touchy subject... Thank you both for your time and sharing your knowledge with us. Joan Tarshis
  5. Thank you all again for this opportunity. I have a quick question...What was meant: "scenario by?" It is no longer used. Did it mean something on the order of a treatment? If anyone knows, please answer here. Thank you again, Joan Tarshis
  6. It might be a Scottish name, taken from a story about two men in a train. One man says, 'What's that package up there in the baggage rack?' And the other answers, 'Oh that's a McGuffin.' The first one asks 'What's a McGuffin?' 'Well' the other man says, 'It's an apparatus for trapping lions in the Scottish Highlands.' The first man says, 'But there are no lions in the Scottish Highlands,' and the other one answers 'Well, then that's no McGuffin!' So you see, a McGuffin is nothing at all. (Alfred Hitchcock, 1966 interview with François Truffaut)
  7. I thought I asked why Mr. Hitchcock never won a Best Director oscar despite Rebecca winning best picture. However... Why did he remake The Man Who Knew Too Much? (When in my opinion the original was so much better.) Do you imagine, if he could remake something else, what might that be? Thank you for your consideration. Joan Tarshis
  8. This is going to ramble. Just got some bad news today. I hope it makes sense. 1. How does the opening of Frenzy differ from the opening of The Lodger? Feel free to rewatch the clip from The Lodger (Daily Dose #2) for comparison. My goodness, they could not be more different. To begin, the only similarity between the two is murder. Period. The Lodger opens with the face of a woman screaming. Frenzy’s opening shot is of a clear, bright, sunny panoramic shot of the City of London. The sweeping English flavored score and the time of day do not suggest criminal activities. The Lodger opens on a foggy night with that closeup behind a blue filter. We know something is amiss immediately before we know it’s a murder. Then in a series of cuts we establish the crowd gathers, police are at the scene along with reporters and a clue. This is big news. However, we only learn about the murder in Frenzy as the punch line to the promises of the politician’s speech. No one screams. A woman isn’t quite sure what she sees floating in the river. The scene continues quite humorously but our dose cuts before another joke or perhaps the first clue. 2. What are some of the common Hitchcock touches that you see in this opening scene? Be specific. Hitchcock immediately establishes where we are. He does that with a miniature in The Lady Vanishes the opening shot here shows us an aerial view as he did in Psycho. In The Birds it is spelled out by a poster. There are comic and ironic elements as the dialogue begins with the description of the filth and contamination of the river. Not to mention a floating corpse. Hitch loves using a long shot to zoom in to specifics. My favorite and perhaps most dramatic is the shot in Notorious which begins on the mezzanine and ends with the key in Bergman’s hand. The only thing that’s missing here is a train! 3. Using Frenzy as an example, what thoughts do you have about the various purposes Hitchcock had in mind when he created his opening scenes? In the Daily Doses, we have focused on opening scenes, so there should be patterns or strategies you have noticed over the course of opening scenes spanning Hitchcock's 50 year career. What I first thought about was we never got the same opening twice. He liked to mix things up. Hitchcock could try to disguise the crime or mystery in his films with various openings but by the 1940s on, people knew they were not getting a musical comedy (except once) when going to see a Hitchcock film. He would often trick us into a false sense of security but we knew we were getting the “treat” we paid for. I will have to disagree with some of the student body. We do not always see our antagonist right up front and sometimes not until the end. Hitch could use openings as prologues when he did not want to launch right into the suspense or mystery or terror or murder in the movie. Of course Frenzy and The Lodger jumped right in with their first corpse. But the most obvious introduction to a crime is in Psycho; it was like two movies. Who would have thought it was going to contain the infamous shower scene from the beginning. It seemed to be about a heist despite its name. And though Norm was just a peeping tom , the psycho was really his mother, wasn’t she? Did we see Raymond O. Burr commit his crime in the first scene? Did we even see him? We have been focused on a dollhouse of characters and a man with a broken leg. So wasn’t the crime going to have to come to him…he certainly couldn’t go out to look for one. Even The Trouble with Harry opens innocently for a few minutes before the real story begins to confuse us. And then almost everyone is a killer! Even the Lady doesn’t vanish for a while….
  9. To answer your questions “wet from the press” was explained in the lecture video as “hot off the press.” To-Night Golden Curls suggests the women he was attracted to. That’s why the girls in the show began wearing wigs or hats to cover their hair. Actually that is not where the opening scene ends; that is where our dose ended. I hope this helped a bit.
  10. I imagine everyone knows, but for some who my be like me, and learn about stuff when it’s too late... at 7 pm tonight the entire Kim Novak interview with our dear Robert, is airing right before Vertigo. sigh missing him.
  11. Hi all I hope this makes sense. I’m running a low fever so I did what I could. Don’t expect my usual brilliance. 1 Based on the opening sequence alone, what do you feel you already know about Marnie as a character? In what ways does Hitchcock visually reveal her character through her interaction with objects. Everything we learn about Marnie, comes from the objects she handles. She displays no emotion. It’s just another day, ho hum. She’s bought new clothes before and torn off the labels and packed them neatly in a color coordinated suitcase. This is an old routine that works for her. She dumps a bunch of money out of the yellow purse we’ve been watching, then begins to change her identity even more. She carefully selects the next person she will morph into from several social security cards she carefully keeps in little gold case. Then there is the Vertigo transformation. She’s at the sink. Suddenly a blonde throws her head back as if she were in a Clairoil commercial. It’s Marnie. That completes her metamorphosis. And…..she’s off again, to find another caper and some more loot. 2 How does Hitchcock use Bernard Herrmann's score in this scene? I believe Herrmann’s score punctuates the changes we feel Marnie goes through in this scene. It begins with a five note repeating melody that sweeps into determination and action as Marnie enters her room. Then the music slowly becomes very soft and flowing before Herrmann softly adds touches of sadness as she begins to pack up and change her hair. Than a victorious sting as she throws her head back as a blonde. Then a subtle tension is added to the score as she leaves for the station - then it suddenly stops when she gets to her locker. We are allowed to hear the sounds of the station as she locks up her old life and throws the key away. 3 Did you see any variation in what Hitchcock is doing with his cameo in this film, and what do you think that variation means? Perhaps for the first time in his cameos (I believe), he looks right at the camera. We see him for an instant and in that moment he made me laugh. He broke the 4th wall. A million things ran through my head as to what he could be thinking. “Did you catch that?” referring to the hot blonde. “What are *you* doing here?” “Why the devil are you looking at me?” I felt like he was teasing us. “Hey. If you’re looking at me, you are missing the film.”
  12. That was a terrific video. I got scared just listening to it. Thanks for sharing.
  13. 1. In what ways does this opening scene seem more appropriate to a romantic comedy than a “horror of the apocalypse” film? What do we learn about Melanie (Tippi Hedren) and Mitch (Rod Taylor) in this scene? The sun is shinning. It’s a beautiful day. Certainly too nice for the world to come to an end. Hitchcock let’s most of us know she is in San Francisco with the cable car but for those who do not, he supplied a big poster that says where we are. Melanie has a very pleasant disposition, even stops and turns and smiles at the men who whistle at her. (I find this extremely unrealistic. She must get whistled at often and I doubt she pays any interest to it anymore. It annoyed me. I would think Hitch would have known better tan that or someone should have mentioned it.) This opening reminds me of the dining car scene from N X NW because of her overt flirting and sexual connotations. The flustered pet shop woman provides the comedy in the film, as does Melanie pretending she works in the shop when Mitch asks for her help. But she has an ulterior motive. She is immediately attracted to him and begins her undisguised flirting. The pen becomes more than a writing utensil. She must be single and looking for a relationship. We can’t tell as of yet if he notices her flirtation. (If he doesn’t, we learn Mitch must have some sort of visual disorder!! ) There are quite a few sexual innuendoes dropped here “molting?” “Love birds.” Melanie gives him wrong information about a bird and she doesn’t seem flustered when he corrects her. Nor does he get angry. Hitch wants us to see the beginnings of their attraction to each other, and we see her’s. We have learned she is a well to do business woman in a hurry. From the buildings around her, she either works in a wealthy part of San Francisco or lives near there. Minor Birds were expensive back then. We don’t learn as much about Mitch. He is dressed like a businessman. He seems to be playful, patient and thoughtful. We know he has a younger sister. Quite an age difference! It seems odd that he wants to buy birds for a gift when he thinks it cruel to keep them locked up in cages. (A verbal foreshadow.) 2. How does Hitchcock use sound design in this opening sequence? For example, how are the sounds of birds used to create a particular mood and atmosphere? We hear the “clang of the trolley” which is almost completely covered by the sounds of the huge flock of birds (seagulls as we learn later). The sight of so many birds, circling tightly is unsettling. Melanie thinks so too. They seem to be upset about something. Hitch makes certain we hear every sound on that city street, including the sound of her high heels. The birds in the pet shop are restless as well but their chirps sound different than the ominous sound of the gulls outside. 3 The opening scene contains a famous Hitchcock cameo. Describe the cameo and if you think it has any particular meaning in relation to this scene. Hitchcock walks out of the pet shop with his *two* dogs. He could have easily chosen to have one dog but the number two is meaningful to him. It implies duality, as we’ve seen early on e.g. “The Lodger” then “more recently” in “Vertigo” and “Psycho,” We also know, for Hitchcock, “seeing double” is a very abnormal state. These typical bird like personas are changing. Is their DNA reverting to their prehistoric ancestors? They begin to show a darker side. They are not burring this anymore. But the three of them, Hitch and his two puppies, appear oblivious to the birds and everything else around them. Life is so much better for them right now because ignorance is bliss.
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