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kobidor

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Everything posted by kobidor

  1. Beautiful performance. Barbra Streisand really is so talented! I really like the way that she performs this song. She does belt a portion of the song, but the ebb and flow of the song works well for the production. She is "speaking" to somebody through the song, and while belting it out might work on stage because the audience is in the room, in a film it comes across a little bit strange. It feels like she is talking to him, and allowing her more vulnerable side to come out. I also love the way it's filmed, with him looking on in the background. This is her chance to explain to him, but
  2. I really like the way that Cukor lets the emotions breathe in the scene. It's tempting to cut away quickly, because it can be uncomfortable to watch somebody who is so upset, and somebody else who is so obtuse, but he really allows the actors in the scene to marinate in their emotions. In particular, Hepburn's distress is obvious. I also love to watch it shift from despair to rage and back again, and while that certainly speaks to Hepburn's talent, it also speaks to Cukor's talent as a director, and understanding of the character. It reminds me of yesterday's Daily Dose from two Robert Preston
  3. Oh my gosh, two fantastic movies, both of which were formative films for me! "Victor/Victoria" is one of my absolute favorite movies of all time! In watching these two clips back-to-back, I notice that Harold and Toddy are both performing for an audience in the clips, and in both roles, he does such a great job connecting with his audience; in turn, it helps him connect to the film's audience. I also notice that Preston is definitely a commanding presence in both clips, but he's more forceful in "The Music Man," in a traditional alpha male way, while he's a little more laid back in "Vict
  4. There is definitely a grittiness to this clip that we haven't seen in other backstage musicals. Even though the film resembles, on the surface, a traditional musical in the older style, we can quickly see that it's quite different. It doesn't have the same type of gloss, and feels more realistic than the musicals that came before. I just really enjoyed Rosalind Russell sweeping in and taking over. She just takes charge and steals the scene!
  5. I kind of love when a musical goes into a more stylized sequence. Musicals themselves are stylized and not generally too realistic, since people who burst into song to comment on the action of their lives don't have an orchestra and kick line backing them up. (My husband used to say that "nobody bursts into song like people do in musicals," but he's lived with me long enough to know that's not true.) Part of my love of those sequences may be that several of my favorite musicals from my early days had those types of sequences, though. I suppose it just feels like that's the way that they're sup
  6. You're right, it's probably better to call it "stereotypical masculine traits." Definitely back in the 1950s (and, unfortunately, still today to some degree), leadership and power is seen as more masculine. Personally, I find the "alpha" and "beta" distinctions helpful (as well as the virgin-w***e dichotomy for women), if imperfect, especially because the narrow conventions of masculinity and femininity were so rigid at this time, and characters fell so perfectly into them so often. I expect when we get to the 1960s-1970s, we're going to see those conventions start to loosen again with women's
  7. I absolutely adore "Singin' in the Rain" - what a delight! First of all, I love the way that they break into this song. They get more and more sing-songy, and then they start bouncing a bit, and, suddenly, it's time for a song! You can see them ramping up for a musical number, but it flows so perfectly. I also like the interplay between all three men, but especially Gene Kelly and Donald O'Connor. While they're synced up pretty amazingly for most of the number, there are moments where you can see that Kelly is the alpha and O'Connor is the beta in this film - even if you haven't se
  8. I really like the contrast of Doris Day's sunny personality with a rougher, tougher character. I have always been a fan of women who mix hard and soft - for example, somebody as classically cute and pretty as Day wearing menswear. There's something fun, and maybe a little bit transgressive, with putting somebody as cute as Day into rougher clothes. It also makes sense that she could morph into a slightly more feminine - but still tomboyish - woman by the end of the movie.
  9. That is a perfect connection! When you get into movie musicals and then go back and watch Brooks' musicals (or movies with music in them), you can see that Mel Brooks is quite the fan of musicals! I really like the interplay between the characters, and it's notable because nobody is really the star. They each "star" at different points in this number, tossing the spotlight back and forth to each other. There are several places within this number where they literally pass an object (like a handkerchief) off to each other. It feels very balanced and more natural - like it's a conversation t
  10. I'm late to the party (I was out of town) but I'm glad to be back and catching up! I loved seeing Petunia really bloom as the film transitioned from her singing at Little Joe's bedside to singing in the yard while doing laundry. She is downright jubilant to be doing the laundry for herself and her husband, even though "sometimes the cabin's gloomy and the table's bare." It's pretty outdated, but that acceptance of proper roles and devotion to your spouse is what the world expected at the time - especially at the time, with the world at war. You fulfilled your role happily. I can se
  11. Like many people, the first Judy Garland film I saw was "The Wizard of Oz." (I suspect that was one of the first films I saw, period. It was one of three movies we watched over and over at my grandma's house, along with "The Sound of Music" and "Mary Poppins" - musicals are in my blood.) As a kid, I always thought of her as a kid; it was kind of shocking to me to realize she was an adult in other musicals! I particularly remember being surprised when I found out that Liza Minnelli was her daughter, and seeing Liza in "Cabaret." Dorothy Gale and Sally Bowles seemed like two completely different
  12. One thing I noticed in this clip, even more obviously than the flags, was the nautical theme of the Oval Office. I wonder if it had something to do with the first day of production being the same day as the attack on Pearl Harbor. Even though World War II was fought in the air and on the ground as much as it was on the seas, a naval attack would have been in peoples' minds - and, they would hope, on the president's mind. Also, heading up the stairs at the White House, there are lots of portraits of presidents, establishing a sense of American history. The dialogue also bears out the patri
  13. Another great Daily Dose of Delight, with bonus tap numbers in the lecture notes! I would like to officially say that there aren't enough dance numbers in modern movies - especially tap numbers! I haven't watched "Top Hat" yet, but in addition to the obvious dance battle aspect, I think that the battle of the sexes comes out in Ginger Rogers' attire. Since her legs aren't covered by a gown, we are able to see that her steps are just as impressive as his. Her outfit is still feminine, but we definitely don't see women in pants very often in the 1930s! I'll be excited to watch the rest of "
  14. I laughed out loud several times at that clip; I've requested "The Love Parade" from the library too! It's fun to find all of these new old movies to watch! I loved the way that Lubitsch cut away to the important props in the scene - the garter, the purse, the gun, the door. Sometimes it feels like the camera sits on the object for a tiny bit too long, which I suspect is a carryover from the silent film era. It probably feels longer, too, because there really isn't any sound at those moments either. However, after watching "The Broadway Melody" last night, I can see the way that Lubitsch
  15. In these two clips from "Rose Marie," I definitely notice the back-and-forth between the characters. It's almost like a dance - they flirt and tease, but they never really come together. I have not seen the full movie, but according to the synopsis I just read, it has a happy ending. I expect the entire movie features this delicate dance as our leads get closer to each other, only to pull away. A perfect example is the way that Bruce sings a whole song about Marie, but when she wants to talk about it, he starts singing the song with a different woman's name. He can't really admit to Marie how
  16. "Daily Dose of Delight" is right - what a fun clip! (I've already put this movie on hold at my local library, since I've unfortunately never seen it!) In general, musicals are a solid form of escapism, and I can see why movie musicals were popular during the Great Depression. Who doesn't want to go spend some time watching people in beautiful costumes singing, dancing, and having frivolous fun? It's the same reason that I expect the "Mama Mia!" sequel to do well this summer; people are stressed, and singing and dancing to ABBA songs set to a thin plot sounds kind of delightful. Add to th
  17. I grew up on musicals, and when I visited my grandma's house we always watched "The Wizard of Oz," "The Sound of Music," and "Mary Poppins," so those are always favorites. I am also a big fan of "Oklahoma!" (the first musical I owned on video) and "The Music Man" - I am a librarian and Marian is one of my heroes (she advocates dirty books!). I can probably name a dozen more that I love, too!
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