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Miriam A

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About Miriam A

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  1. Maria, your heartfelt words truly demonstrate how much can be gained from participating in a class such as the one we have just completed. I, too, have similar issues and have found movie musicals to be an effective way of combatting my demons. They take me into a world of fantasy that could almost be believed. I have taken other on-line classes and have also benefited from the group experience while at the same time keeping my privacy. May you experience many hours, days, months and years of wholeness, completeness and happiness.
  2. And I would love to devote a month long class to each of the movie musical eras. The 1920’s-30’s; the 1940’s; the 1950’s; the 1960’s; the 1970’s and beyond. I have enjoyed this class so much.
  3. I respectfully disagree with Dr. Ament’s description of the acting in this scene. The beautiful and delightful Audrey Hepburn is too over the top as she wallows in self pity. Cukor’s use of light and dark is theatrical. The cranky clueless scientist Rex Harrison is much too detached from his guinea pig for us to believe that he is actually in love with her. He relates to her as an animal or bug and appears physically repulsed when he defends himself from her attack to his face. The audience is never shown physical attraction between these protagonists. Theirs is a union of convenience an
  4. What do you notice about the way the scene is directed as Petunia goes to Joe’s bedside and as we cut to her outside hanging laundry? What does this tell us about her relationship, and the connection to the song? How would the song change if it was a woman singing about her child? Does the cultural meaning change? How? What other thoughts do you have about this film, the issues of black Americans during WWII, and this film’s importance in this era? Petunia moves from pillow to clothesline while her ecstasy at Joe’s slow recovery from a gunshot wound remains unchanged. The scen
  5. This scene flip-flops the typical seduction scene where the man has the power and persues the lovely reluctant lady. Instead we are delighted to watch romantic crooner Frank Sinatra being cajoled by athletic humorous Betty Garrett. Frank’s character would have been much more comfortable had the lady in question been “dressed to kill” and had caught him in a softy lit upholstered living room. Instead, we are in the bleachers of a prosaic ball park and Betty’s modestly dressed character is straightforwardly propositioning him with her bold lyrics and forthright dance moves. This is most appa
  6. Describe how the scenes in today’s Daily Dose were designed to promote American values for audiences during World War II. Be specific. Refer to props, set design, settings, etc. in your answer. Listen carefully to the dialogue in these scenes. In what ways does the dialogue and/or the screenplay work to boost American morale? Quote specific lines of dialogue in your response. Since this is the opening of a biographical musical, how differently do you feel this film would be if it opened with the Fourth of July Parade scene in Providence, Rhode Island vs. the opening with FDR in the
  7. I am totally in love with Fred Astaire and this is one of my favorites of the dances he and Ginger Rogers perform. The words of the song and the intimacy of the setting further the plot as we watch the growing attraction between this couple who are destined to be together. Their compatibility is symbolized by their dance moves as they mirror each other’s steps. The fact that the costumes are so similar gives us a rare view of two pairs of legs moving in unison during much of the number. The movie plot follows two people who are perfectly matched despite the running joke of mistaken identity
  8. What do you notice about the interaction between the characters in these two scenes? Please give specific examples. If you have seen either or both of these actors in other films or television shows, please share your perceptions about them. What do these clips tell you about the male/female relationships as they are depicted in the films during this era? What norms might you expect are supported under the Hollywood Film Code? 1. In the first scene the couple is in an intimate romantic setting only the two of them are present seated closely in a boat on the water. He is strong
  9. 1. The sophisticated characters on screen with their fluid speech and spiffy clothes act as if they have no history, no struggles, no past suffering. They have excellent manners and are polite and civil to each other. Class distinction is minimized. The doorman and the maid have classy accents and are literate, perfectly groomed and are treated with respect. 2. Love and romance is in the air while the movie audience is educated in the art of the idealized creation of a Show Biz product both in front of and behind the curtain. 3. The code of decency does not preven
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