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  1. 1. The beginning of the clip, as an audition scene, reminded me of the backstage musicals from the 1930s, like “42nd Street” and the “Broadway Melody” movies – except, in this case, it was children, and the audition was for a part in a show less glamorous and polished than one that would be going on the Broadway stage. 2. The way Ms. Russell plays the character, we know that she’s one who knows what she wants – and she’s going to get it. She commands the attention of the entire crew, and the audience. She’s also wearing clothing with leopard print, which reflects some of her boldness and
  2. 1. I like that the movie moves back and forth from the "ordinary" scenes (a struggling artist trying to sell his paintings, meeting a girl and being shot down, etc.) to the more fantastical ones like the ballet at the end. Using more than one approach like that gave the movie variety and a good balance of escapism and realism. 2. I don't think that Jerry was an unlikeable guy. If he was being a bit unfriendly in this scene, it was because of frustration. He was working to sell his paintings and no one had been interested. Then, he met a girl who was a bit of a know-it-all and all too rea
  3. 1. Even before they start dancing, Kelly and O'Connor are already in sync with each other - all it takes is a look between the two to get the song started. And from the beginning of the scene, the two are moving very relaxedly. They hold onto that air of ease even as they launch into an incredibly complicated dance number. 2. The professor is understandably startled when Kelly and O'Connor start to sing and dance, but he doesn't really do much to stop them. He watches them in confusion, seeming to think, "Wow, these guys are nuts." But he lets the scene play out anyway. His baffled reacti
  4. 1. Even as a tomboy, Jane still has a certain quality of femininity; she may not be the most refined, high-society type of lady, but she's a lady nonetheless. What sets her apart from the usual female character in 1950s musicals is that, by the end, she's a balance of two personalities - though becoming softer and more ladylike in a few ways, she still holds onto the gumption and assertiveness that she had before. To me, it often seems like women in these musicals were either one or the other - a tomboy or a girly girl - but Jane is a special case because she shows that you could be both.
  5. 1. As each of them is different as a performer, the song is designed to let each of them play to their strengths. They support each other, and allow each other to contribute. They are featured equally, with none of the four seeming to dominate over any of the others. 2. None of the costumes were very flashy, and they go together color-wise. 3. The way that they interact suggests that they respect each other as professionals - even as they poke fun at each other's careers. They're also inspiring each other and having fun together, bonding as they prepare to create their show.
  6. 1. The way the scene is directed implies that Petunia has been taking care of Joe for a period of time, willing to comfort and care for him. The scene shows that she's devoted to the relationship. 2. The nurturing mood of the song wouldn't change at all, but it would reflect a more motherly type of love rather than the one that Petunia and Joe share as a couple. 3. I haven't been able to see the whole movie yet, but it does put a spotlight on African American performers at the time, from what I've seen.
  7. 1. The first Judy Garland film I remember seeing is "For Me and My Gal" (and coincidentally, it's been my favorite ever since). Now that I've learned more about her, I can put the movie in context as one of her first grown-up roles. In the film, she gets some opportunities for both dancing and singing, and for both comedy and drama. Watching the movie for the first time, that was what I remember thinking: she can do it all! Before I knew that she was only twenty at the time, I could have sworn she was older - in a good way, based on her level of maturity and charm, and of course, her skill as
  8. 1. During most of the singing parts, the camera is up close to the characters' faces, so that we can see their reactions to each other's behavior. In sequences like the one where Sinatra's character is running away from Garrett up the bleachers, the camera pulls back, so that we can see all of the action, adjusting to fit each distance. Later, for example, when Garrett catches Sinatra at the top of the bleachers and tries to sit him down, the camera comes closer again, but is still far enough away that we can see all of their movements and observe their body language. 2. I think the bigg
  9. 1. As far as props go, there was one thing that really jumped out at me in this scene - flags! And, of course, being in the White House, there are model ships and portraits of former presidents scattered about. Also, the way Cohan and FDR are talking - the warm way they speak about the country - gives us an idea that what we're listening to is a cause well worth supporting. 2. The president comments on Cohan's Irish-American sense of patriotism, and Cohan is quick to mention that he owes it to his father. As young boys tend to look up to their fathers and what they stand for, this tells t
  10. 1. I don't see this dance as as much of a competition as it is two people getting to know each other. Ginger's face while Fred is singing to her suggests that she thinks he's a little crazy, but she's growing more amused by his constant attempts to speak with her. At this point in the movie, he's already used her annoyance with him as an opportunity for dance-flirting ("There's only one thing that'll stop me... my nurses always used to put their arms around me") and conned his way into driving her carriage. And each time, he hasn't seen his efforts pay off, exactly. But now, through this dance
  11. 1. We can tell that Alfred is familiar with this kind of situation by how calmly he reacts to it. In the beginning, he walks out of the room smiling, even as he's being shouted at from offscreen. From the little remarks he makes, the way he continues to smile throughout the scene, and the collection of guns he adds the empty one to, the audience can pin him as a carefree playboy type. 2. Sound comes in handy here with Maurice Chevalier's little asides. As much as I love silent movies, I think that in this case, it added more to the humor of the lines, how Lubitsch had Maurice read them q
  12. 1. A lot of their interaction, I thought, came from the looks they would give. Their expressions told you just about all you needed to know. Jeanette's little smiles and eyebrow raises in the first clip told you she was interested in Nelson - and that she was rather enjoying the serenade. However, you also learned from her composure and teasing air of aloofness that she wasn't ready to give in to him. But... the idea was starting to look not so bad after all. In the second clip, Nelson is sitting at a distance from Jeanette while she struggles to sing along to the barroom music that she i
  13. 1. I do think that this clip shows a brighter perspective of life – more than what we’re used to in today’s world, and certainly more for audiences in the middle of the Depression. But by no means is that a bad thing. Scenes like this may be considered unrealistic by some, but they also seem to say that wasn’t impossible for people to put their lives back together. The happiness and hope in these musicals helped inspire people to keep trying! 2. Most of the Depression-era musicals I’ve seen have had a happy ending. There was some sort of success in the lives of the characters, whether rom
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