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DAILY DOSE OF DELIGHT #5 (From Yankee Doodle Dandy)

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The opening with Cohan entering the White House and going up the steps shows a significant amount of patriotic or nationalistic objects.  Every photo on the way up the stairs is of a previous president.  Each step and each painting adds more importance to the meeting and sets up the one comment Cohan makes about being nervous.  But he is also deeply patriotic and takes the opportunity to discuss with the President what drives him.  And this is the best setup to the Cohan show in Rhode Island and the parade.  This setup is much more effective than just starting with the parade.  And, as for patriotic objects, the flags, the flags and more flags!  This theme goes through the entire movie.  The imagery at the end of the moving is deeply patriotic and, even today, watching this finale can elicit deep feelings of patriotism in those who watch it.  

The movie plays on the "hard work will get you everywhere" work ethic of Americans.  Even for as successful as the Cohan family was, being visited and considered by Albee was portrayed as a huge opportunity that the family received for all the hard work they did.  

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1) The music,  the American flags being proudly displayed ....and not to mention,  nothing more American than walking into the White House where our Presidents of past and present resided and loved our country just as every household within the U.S....

2)  ....the way Cohen spoke to FDR about his love and passion for this country and  camaraderie with Irish Americans wearing their patriotism on their hearts "You carry your love of country like a flag, right out in the open. It’s a great quality”. 

3)... it definitely would be a different scene,  but with a more lighter tone if opened with a parade.  With the WH scene it gives more of a sincere, deep, patriotic heartbeat and gives an official "this is America" stamp of approval per se

 

 

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1.       This scene promoted American values by the making the long staircase a focus of the scene so it can highlight the huge paintings on the wall of past presidents and by the conversation between the two characters about George’s dance number about the flag.  I also noticed the flag pin on George’s lapel. Just the fact that George was visiting the President of the United States showed a huge American value; that the President was accessible to those people who put America first.
2.       I thought when George started talking to the president and the president said how George “was his double” and commented on how he admired that the Irish Americans “carry your love of the country like a flag; right out in the open.”  Then George responded by telling the President how his father “ran away to the civil war”.  The President surmised George’s attitude toward this country by saying “you spent your life telling the other 47 states wheat a great country this is”.
3.       I feel this film would be have definitely been different if it did not open in the Oval Office because who would George have been talking to at the Fourth of July parade? I don’t think he would have had been meeting with the President.  Who else but the President would have made George so proud that he would talk about his life and the love of his country? The opening worked very well using the Oval Office.  

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The film flashbacks and tells Cohan’s life story and through that you experience WWI through his eyes. Cohan is older but Yankee Doodle Dandy reminds people that they won WWI. They show Cohan singing to the troops his famous songs which build morale. At the end of the film when Cohan receives the Congressional Medal of Honor from President FDR, Cohan recognizes that he did not fight and this honor should go to soldiers, however; FDR reassures him that his music and what did hear was helping people fight. If the film opened as just a bio in chronological order I think I would have less respect throughout the film. That scene peaked my interest and made me realize the importance and significance of George M. Cohan, someone I did not know much about until this film. I was pleasantly surprised about how much I enjoyed learning the story of his life more than the musical aspects.

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  1. 1.  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.

There are flags waiving and the conversation was about family and a connected family.  Additionally support of America in spite of being Irish and how much it meant to their family.

  1. 2.  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.

Being invited to the White House to talk to the President would be huge even to a man like Cohan. “Irish Americans carry their patriotism right out in the open”.

3.  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 Oval Office? Defend your answer.

I think the scene in the White House is important as the symbol of being American and where our support is to our country and to our President and the decisions that are made there. Too bad we cannot reinstall one from the past! 

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1. The movie opens on Cohen going to meet Mr. Roosevelt in the oval office and he is very nervous there are pictures of warships on the walls and flags everywhere.

2. Cohen and Mr. Roosevelt discuss family, nationality and love on ones country which are all themes that are used heavily in the war era musicals.

3. I think that the flashback is necessary to show the viewer where Mr. Cohen came from and how his family shaped him to be where he is now.

 

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Daily Dose #5

  • 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. The scene takes place in White House where the interior design is simple yet elegant in legacy. As one could see, the pictures of former presidents were hung along the stairway. The American flag symbolises the patriotic love of this country. Even the flag was mentioned by the on-screen President from this scene. 

 

  • 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. One of the best lines from this scene is the one with Mr. President where he says that how Irish Americans would love the country flag. Here is the quote: 

        (President: Well that's one thing I've always admired about you Irish-Americans. You carry your love of country like a   flag, right out in the open. It's a great quality.)
     (George: I inherited that - I got that from my father. He ran away to the Civil War when he was thirteen - the proudest kid in the whole state of Massachusetts.)

  

  • 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 Oval Office? Defend your answer. This scene was just perfect. It began when Mr. Cohan enters the Oval Office where Mr. President was working. It was silent and the scene setting was in a formal mood. When he talks to the President about his past, then comes along the colourful flashback with star-spangled flags flying in air along with patriotic music played by bands and the wonderful setting of vaudeville. 

 

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1. 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.

As Cohan enters the White House, there is a soft, somber tone to the lighting.  The conversation between him and the butler recalls a cordial relationship between strangers that share a common bond: love of country.  They ascend the steps to the oval office, evoking the elevated (even, god-like) status of the president.  They pass portraits of past presidents, with Washington (of course), at the very top.

Inside the oval, we see images of naval war ships of the past. At first, these seem commonplace.  But they are appropriate given FDR's was once Secretary of the Navy.  In context, of course, they evoke the recent attack on the US fleet at Pearl Harbor.  History therefore serves as a guiding principal both for the narrative (the film is a flashback, after all), as well as keeping the story relevant in context of the recently declared war.

2. 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.

The butler refers to the various presidents he has served and how "Teddy Roosevelt got me a seat up in the balcony" to see "George Washington, Jr." As he describes Cohan's "You're A Grand Old Flag" he adds "[that song] is just as good today as it ever was."  Inside the oval, FDR compliments Cohan's portrayal of him on stage and says, "I heard you knew all the answers." To which Cohan replies, "Nowadays, I wish I did."  The implication of this comment references the sense of confusion and fear the entire country is experiencing.

3. 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 Oval Office? Defend your answer.

Starting with the Oval Office scene creates a sense of relevancy as well as grounds the audience in the "here and now."  Rather than offer a bit of escapism and patriotic flash from the outset, we are immediately told that this story is going to relate to the current state of the world.  Instead of a tale of the past, it is a story that is relevant and vital to the present.

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1. They walk through the hall of Presidents in the White House and speak of the presidents. It is the fourth of July they are talking about, Cohen's birth. He meets with President of the time FDR in the oval office. Very feel good Americana scene with people of different races and refers back to how his whole life is about wearing patriotic as if it is a badge for the country of the United States. 

2.  Must of been  thirty some years ago, I was valet for Mr. Teddy Roosevelt, he got me a seat up in the gallery and the play was George Washington to and you were singing and dancing all about the Grand Old Flag. Mr Teddy use to sing it in the bathroom. A very cocky kid alway carrying a flag. I was a Yankee Doodle Dandy. That is one thing I always admired about you Irish Americans, you carry your love of country like a flag right out in the open it is a great quality. I inherited that from my Father. 

3. George M. Cohen was very American and they Oval office opening said he made it to the highest level for his field. He was the top. If it had opened in Rhode Island that is were it began, not how Cohen was a household name and true patriot. Love this Musical, it shows Cagney's skills as more than a tough guy, a great singer and dancer. 

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1. The scenes in this Daily Dose promote American values by having patriotic props in abundance and in clear view (American flags dominate nearly bit of space captured by the camera), providing two specifically American settings through the White House and a lively small town. Additionally, the set design for both these places even further contributes to the spirit of patriotism in that the White House is designed in a serious manner, with an air of grandeur whereas the small town is designed in such a way that it invokes a homey, relaxed, and joyful feeling many Americans could probably relate to in their own towns.

2. The amount of dialogue describing or praising Cohan, coming from the president no less, seeks to boost American morale, with lines like "a regular Yankee Doodle Dandy, always carrying a flag in a parade or following one," "That's one thing I've always admired about you Irish Americans, you carry your love of country like a flag right out in the open. It's a great quality." Lines like these immediately endear the audience to Cohan and build him up a shining example of American patriotism to follow.

3. By opening the film with FDR in the Oval Office, this biographical musical is lent an air of seriousness and authenticity. To be sure, there's a liveliness to the parade scene that I'm sure is infused throughout the rest of the picture, but starting off with that scene would've set a more playful tone that would have belied the example of American patriotism that this film was intended to seriously convey to the audience; beginning with the president himself made audiences sit up and pay attention to this important patriot who earned FDR's respect and made the film more successful in its aims to be a shining example to people.

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1) 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.

The set couldn’t be grander, the White House itself, with its grand halls and tall ceilings. Even better on the way up the wide staircase were portraits of some of the past presidents hanging on the wall. When the camera brings us into the Oval Office you see paintings of sailings ships, which I assume are of America’s sailing battleships of the past, as well as models of ships. Of course there were flags on staffs flanking the hearth. The room was darkened promote an atmosphere of the seriousness of the times even though the task at hand was a pleasant one, awarding a Medal of Honor.

2) 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.
   

3) The opening parade with all of the flags waving as the marchers go by is designed to stir patriotic feelings. The doorman mentioning the song “It’s a Grand Old Flag” and saying Teddy sang it in the bath tub; then they both agreed that ‘it was a good song then and now’. The current President saying that ‘he always admired the ability of the Irish Americans to carry their love of flag and country out in the open’. Then Cohan followed up saying ‘his father had joined the Civil war when he was only 13 and then told everyone what a great state Massachusettes was’ and George had been ‘telling the other 48 since then what a great country it is’.

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 Oval Office? Defend your answer.

 

If it had opened with the parade it would have still been a great film. The music would have been loved and celebrated but the man himself and his music was given much more importance by opening the film in the White House with the President than would have been felt if that was all handled at the end.

I remember when I first saw this film. I had come home from school near the end of June and it was playing on the 3pm TV movie show as an early 4th of July movie. Most of Rhode Island closed down and went on vacation when I was a kid so the 4th was pretty big to us. I remember wondering why he was called to see the President and why didn’t they tell us. And I kept asking that question during the movie. The wondering kept my attention in the plot. I liked the music and the story but I wanted to know what the President wanted with him. It made an impact on me that I don’t think would have been there if the movie had just started off with the parade.

 

    

 

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1.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.

the oval office sets the tone. there's a parade going on and many American flags showing the celebration of patriotism, a celebration of July 4th

 

2.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.

 the convo between the butler about the grand ole flag and how its such a great song today as it was in the past, clearly to attract all audiences and feelings of togetherness

 

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1. Photos of presidents, mention of the song grand old flag, flags in the background and lots of them, shot of flag flying and parade, band, soldiers. There was a lot of thought when making in terms of reflecting American values during the era of the 1940s. And I think this reflects the feeling after World War 2 was over there was a new found belief in America and traditional American values that bounced back after victory. Probably the reason why there are so many flags in this scene. 

2. Mention of grand old flag song and how it was a good old song in its day. And when FDR mentions that immigrant community of the Irish Americans by saying "You Irish Americans you carry your love of country like a flag right out in the open."

3. If it started the other way I don’t think the interaction with the characters would seem as strong as it seems here. And the scene wouldn’t flow as it does with having the opening be with FDR. This way too the audience understands that the guy is a double for the president. Starting it the other way would seem jarring or at least that's how I feel.

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1. The whole scene is designed to evoke a certain respect towards America and the US Presidency. From the elegance and reverence of the butler towards Cohan but also to his job, to the paintings and portraits on the stairwell. The whole Cohan demeanor, and how the President is portrayed as a respectful yet approachable person. The whole conversation with the butler about "singing and dancing about the grand old flag" to the conversation with the President about "always carrying a flag" and how he inherited that from his father.

2. Quotes to boost the morale?

"It was a good old song in its day.
Yes, sir, it was... and it's just as good today as it ever was."

"I was a pretty cocky kid those days. Pretty cocky kid. A regular Yankee Doodle Dandy. Always carrying a flag
in a parade or following one.
I hope you haven't outgrown the habit.
Not a chance."

And so on, the President praising Irish immigrants, Cohan telling about his father going to war when he was still a kid.

3. I think the opening lets us put in perspective who Cohan ended up becoming, even before we meet him. I think it kinda helps since his character in the first act is a bit insufferable.

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Daily Dose #5

1.  I really noticed  pictures of the presidents as Cagney was going up the steps . He even pauses to look at them. There is a flag in the office of FDR. 

2.  “... always carrying a flag or parade or following one...”

”you carry your love of country like a flag...”Example of Cohan’s parents variety shows

3.  Even though I am not a fan of FDR i would still open the film with this scene.  I understand  the comment made about... “must of been a Republican paper.”... . At this time  and what the film stands for would not been appropriate  to further party differences. Although as a side note am I to assume this is where Hollywood states showing its more progressive side and anti conservative thoughts?

Still, the scene is set perfectly. Even though the African American  in this scene is depicting an act of device  profession, I got the feeling the symbolism of going up the steps was a sign of things to come for black Americans

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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.

As James Cagney was walking up the stairs of the White House, he walks by multiple pictures of our past presidents. There is much history in those pictures and many memories. Each president stood for a different time and each president wanted something better for the country. This scene promotes how we came to be what we came to be thanks to many great men giving their lives so our country can be a prosperous one. When James Cagney goes into a flashback, you can see how much pride they had for the USA with flags everywhere and people filling the street supporting the troops. These settings were to show that America is a proud country and will support our troops. There were happiness and pride for our great country. 

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1 Americana is everywhere from references to previous presidents, to portraits, and flags. The setting itself being the white house and the oval office.

2. "You Irish Americans you carry your love of country like a flag right out in the open"  Probably my favorite line. Shows off some patriotism and the many nationalities we have within america.

3 I wouldn't make any changes. It you had started out with the parade you would of been lost as to what the story was about it.

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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.

  • Well there is a lot going on in this scene ... and from different perspectives. You have the valet/butler, who is black, extolling the virtues of the old Cohan song "You're a Grand Old Flag" and how it is still relevant "today" as they are walking along a row of presidential portraits. Then you have "FDR" praising Irish Americans for wearing their patriotism on their sleeves. And if you still haven't gotten the message, the scene shifts to a closeup of an American flag, a 4th of July parade and the impending birth of one of America's most patriotic songwriters ever -- George M. Cohan. If you aren't up and waving your imaginary flag by then, heaven help you :) .

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.

  • Well, if you listen to the valet/butler, he talks about how when he saw Cohan on stage 30 years ago "you were just singing and dancing all about the Grand 'Ol Flag." He then recalls how President Teddy Roosevelt used to sing the song "in the bathtub." It seems to imply that Cohan was so patriotic, even the president had to "step up his game" when it came to flag-waving.

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 Oval Office? Defend your answer.

  • Opening with the parade would have been confusing, even with a voiceover explaining what was going on. What year was this parade? If Cohan hasn't even been "born" yet, what is its relevance in the greater narrative? The visit to FDR sets up the flashback and puts the parade in context while getting us set for our look back at the life of Cohan.

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Daily Dose #5

1.     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.

The scenes in today’s daily Dose promote American values in several ways.

First, there is a massive and wonderful display of known / completely recognizable American symbols of patriotism/freedom/unity (flags…on stands… and flags being waved by people of all ages, or flying high in the community…even a tiny one on Cohan’s lapel… and also red/white/blue buntings), liberty (lady liberty on the regimental flag), the importance of the military (historical portraits of past generals/presidents, battleships under glass and pictured on the walls…the nautical theme of décor in the presidents office), politics (the donkeys on the presidents desk), and American history  (by all of the same).

Second, when viewing the scenes from this clip, the story line promotes the importance of family over and over again. Beginning with the former president’s (Teddy Roosevelt) valet is on duty, when it wasn’t required, so he could see “George Washington Jr”) again and have the opportunity to share about the president singing “The Grand Old Flag” while in the bathtub…commenting the song is still great today…thus showing a long term influence of the Cohans as a cohesive and unified family. On to president FDR’s memory of seeing the Cohan family perform 30 years prior.  Also, Cohan speaks of his patriotism as being inherited. It is a part of his family’s cultural heritage. The president comments on the patriotic strain of the “Irish Americans” as a strength of that group of people and Cohan uses this to lead to the story of his birth, sharing the WHY of his patriotic name and lifestyle.

Third, we see multiple families at the parade. We also see the Cohans colleagues as being supportive and excited. Jerry Cohan is shown to be able to “do it all” by insisting on checking on and celebrating with wife and baby between meeting his responsibilities.

 

2.      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.

I see the dialogue boosting American morale in the following ways:

 

·       The president is listening to the American public…“I understood you knew all the answers.”

·       The president is aware of what is in the newspapers…”The Herald Tribune says you would make a better president.”

·       Be like Cohan…show you are proud to be an American…”You carry your country like a flag.”

·       The president is reinforcing the fact…”What a great country it is.”

·       Concerning our military… “Homecoming”… “They were optimistic, happy and” expectant.”

 

3.     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 Oval Office? Defend your answer.

It would seem that Cohan’s birth on the fourth of July would have been a logical place to begin this biographic film. However, we must keep in mind that the studio and film- makers had different or additional goals and a significantly different agenda in creating the musical.  By beginning the film with the visit to the white house, we are set up as though we were beginning a real life conversation. To me this beginning is an invitation to gain insight to more than just the incredible life of Cohan as a showman, and a composer, but also that of a patriot and family man. It is also an invitation to visualize the dream of a determined man and learn how life molds us, as individuals, to accomplish the things our hearts and minds are open to. The parade scene is more a depiction than an invitation.

When telling a story, it always makes a difference if it is presented with just the facts or told with the side lines and special parts that share human experience. Certain ways of telling a story can evoke emotions or passions. I believe this is a part of the film- makers purpose in beginning with the white house. We are involved from the first minute until the last. We are able to have complete empathy with each of the characters. We are able to follow the life patterns of Cohan and discover what it was that motivated or inspired him. The American values that need to be reinforced are. Cohan’s initial motivation to make money from his own compositions and his desire to have his name be renowned were excellent motivators for his determination and yet, even HE did not realize initially how far reaching his life's work would be or the depth of meaning his music would bring to the American people as a whole and globally. The movie does a great job of showing Cohan did not imagine receiving such high honor from his government. I feel the biggest differences in using the parade as a beginning for the film would have been accomplishing the reinforcement of American values and the level of audience involvement from start to finish.

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There are a lot of patriotism shown in this clip as well as through the whole film. As shown in the first segment of the flashback scene, a parade is ensue with an adoring crowds cheering and waving flags. Not even a protester or naysayer in sight. Even going back to the beginning of the clip when Cohen arrives to the White house, what an honor to be invited to the court of the President, given Cohen someone the President admires and values. Cohen even wears an american flag on his lapel, small to see, but still important. Cohen even tells the President that ever since he was young american value was ensued to him, as his father never missed a parade/show as well that will his songs he made sure to pass on his values and support to others all over. Not just locally, but universal.

When Cohen first arrives to the White House, his presence is not unwanted or unwelcome, just the Butler was excited to meet him, as if they are old friends and have known each other for years. The Butler makes note about one of Cohen's songs and how that song has been a favorite past time for him and his family. Showing that Cohen's work is a favorite to all minorities in the world, not just one group. Next, the conversation Cohen has with Roosevelt who tells Cohen about what a legacy he left behind and how much he touch the American way. He even makes point ti Cohen's nationality being of Irish american ancestry and how they always had a torch for patriotism as seen when his father ran away to fight in the Civil war. Many appreciate all that one does to serve their country and not ask for any reward or praise in return.

I believe the opening of the film was great just as it was, rather then open it with Cohan's past. If they did start it off with the flashback scene, it would/could set the whole film on a different cart. Starting at the Presidents office, shows what importance Cohan was and that there is some contribution he must have had to catch the President attention, especially the walk up the stairs conversation with the Butler about one of his numbers holding a torch for many years. For example, "...about the grand old flag. Mr. Teddy used to sing it in his bathtub." "It was a good old song in its day." "Yes sir, it was and it's just as good today as it ever was." Cohan is of an elder age at the start of the film and with each breath of his voice, he echos what contribution he left for his country and how it didn't just start abrupt in his life, but he was born into it, like a lot of us today, with a strong foundation, moral support from family and friends and the urge to pass it along anyway and form as they can as well as not ask for any reward in return.

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  1. There were paintings of past US Presidents as Cohan is walking up the stairs escorted by the African-American butler to President FDR (in today’s moviegoers’ opinions, the black butler stereotype would not fit well with how African American roles were treated back then). In the President’s room, we see a bunch of ships FDR collected. And in the flashback, the parade has a bunch of American flags hanged and waved by people, and the feel is lively and in great spirit for their country in how far they’ve come through since the Declaration of Independence from Britain in 1776 to its present timeframe in the 1910s-1940s.
     
  2. The butler pointed out that he was also a valet to Teddy Roosevelt and happens to get a seat by him to see Cohan’s musical: George Washington Jr. and describes him singing and dancing about the US flag that he still liked the song to this day. FDR states to Cohan that his patriotic musical shows makes him know a lot about the American spirit even though Cohan denies that as he’s not perfect. FDR also boast on his Irish-American background in carrying their love of their country like a flag right out in the open. In a way, it’s like how Cohan’s Irish background signifies the roots of bringing the Irish and other European cultural elements to America to flourish and transform into its own identity. Cohan remarks on his own traits and characteristics inherited from his father who went to the Civil War when he was 13, showcasing his bravery and courage despite being young.
     
  3. If the movie were to open in the Providence Parade scene, it would feel like it’s a “propaganda” type film with all of the Flags signifying the need to love their country without narration or background. The beginning scene with FDR apparently works better here because despite a few irks, it does showcase how far Cohan has gone, making quips of his achievements and honest criticism that he’s not a very perfect man, and is still willing to tell the President his backstory in his peaks and valleys and his love for America in need of a morale. It would be seen as a "patriotic" film in seeing the backstory of Cohan. 

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1.  The scenes in the fifth Daily Dose of Delight film, "Yankee Doodle Dandy", are deliberately structured to promote pride and patriotism.  Settings and character interaction firmly encourage shared commitment to country and family.  

In the first scene, props in the White House used to convey such emotions include portraits of presidents and paintings of sea battles.  In the oval office we see a flag, nautical decor and, referencing family, a stuffed rabbit on the desk to the right of President Roosevelt.  Irish-American Cohan and the president's African-American valet share conversation as if old friends, and they ascend the stairs to the oval office side-by-side. 

In the second scene, the set is filled with flags, marching army troops and patriotic bunting.   Cohan's father is proudly costumed and performing as an Irishman. He is the star on the stage on the Fourth of July and about to become the father of a new American citizen.

 

2.  The dialogue, colored with ethnic accents, is important to the promotion of patriotism and a nod toward equality in the clips from "Yankee Doodle Dandy".  In the first scene, the president's valet has a southern accent which was associated strongly with African-Americans of the period.  Cohan's accent seems to have more of a Brooklyn/Irish-American twang, softened by his social experience and elevation in his profession, but still referencing the immigrant.  The president's accent is upper-rung and Ivy League.  The three tones and styles of speech would have been identifiable by Americans of almost every socio-economic and ethnic category who saw this film when it was released.  Specific lines of dialogue between the characters indicate that they are all on the same level and working together for a common cause: "Here's my double.",  "...I've always admired about you Irish-Americans."

 

3.  If this film had opened with the Fourth of July parade and George M.'s birth, instead of his ascending the stairs of the White house, it would have been a story more in keeping with the optimistic productions of the depression era - the beginning of Franklin Roosevelt's first term in office.  By the time "Yankee Doodle Dandy" was released, the  president and county had moved into a new phase and focus - sustained economic growth, the beginning of civil rights concerns and military victory.  The audience no longer needed so much to be taught how to get the attention of the government as to be reminded that it was the government.

 

 

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I'm so late with this, but I just wanted to say I appreciate the lecture notes discussing how the revue format went away (and probably for good reason). In August 1963, MGM released Hootenanny Hoot, which is a movie about people putting on a show, with a thin, thin plot stringing the musical acts together. The first time I saw it (maybe in the '90s?), I was so frustrated by how the barely existent plot kept getting interrupted by musical acts. It was made in the '60s, so I expected it to behave better as musical. I was basically floored it was even a movie. Like, "They made this? Do they know this is not a good way to make a movie?"

So, just a very late comment about how revue musicals, IMHO, went away for good reasons. They really serve to frustrate. You're watching one kind of movie, then another kind of movie, then back to the first thing, then back to the second thing. Nothing takes hold.

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Has anyone seen the real George M. Cohan in the recently released on video The Phantom President? I just saw it for the first time and was astonished at how much Cagney captured Cohan’s very specific swagger, charm, and eccentric dancing style. Look for the Universal DVD for a glimpse of the real Cohan who even briefly sings and dances in this rare film.

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1. 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.

What could promote American values more that walking into the President's office. Portraits of former Presidents, flag in the room, speaking the song, Grand Old Flag, and about patriotism and Irish ancestors fighting in the Civil War for the Union. Then, a parade and lots of flag waving, etc. 

2. 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.

Nearly every bit of the conversation promotes patriotism. The WH butler talks about how Teddy Roosevelt loved the song the Grand Old Flag. FDR says, "That’s what I like about you Irish Americans, you carry your love for your country around with you like a flag.” Cohen says of his father, "A regular Yankee Doodle Dandy. Always carrying a flag in a parade or following one," and he "ran away to the Civil War at the age of thirteen. There wasn’t a prouder boy in Massachusetts.” All of this talk of patriotic Americans would boost morale.

3. 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 Oval Office? Defend your answer.

The opening in the WH sets the stage for what Cohen became and offers the opportunity of flashback for telling the story. 

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