History of Cinema 2

December 13th, 2010

Bonnie and Clyde

Posted by dmaldonado in Uncategorized

First time ever watching this film and I have to say this was my second favorite. It was very humorous to me. I think the film did a good job bringing up very serious issues and yet managing to still make us laugh as viewers. Bonnie and Clyde and the rest of the gang are presented as likeable characters making us forget at times that are murderers and robbers. Not only was the film funny but also sad, I actually felt sad seeing the final scene. Watching the film brought about so many questions about the relationship between Bonnie and Clyde, like is this romantic? It’s hard to be judgemental about these characters, because in fact that are doing things against the law and yet I feel sorry for them. Then at other instances in the film I didn’t feel so sorry because they are trying to live life by taking the easy way out.

December 13th, 2010

Pather Panchali

Posted by dmaldonado in Uncategorized

In all honesty this was the least favorite of all movie screenings. I can see the similarities with Umberto D in that it is a film of the mundane, but I couldn’t enjoy this film as much as Umberto D. The lighting was very dark making it hard to focus on what was going on at times, although I can see why the director chose to do so, in order to give it that realistic view. But I felt that it was slow paced when it could have been cut a lot shorter. The movie started to pick up towards the end with the death of Durka, but even so I can’t say I enjoyed it.

December 13th, 2010


Posted by dmaldonado in Uncategorized

My first time ever watching this film and I was immediately hooked! I heard many good things of the film prior to watching it, but never did I think I would have enjoyed it this much. Definitely inspired to watch more Hitchcock films, and overall venture out into the world of film. I haven’t watch many films so I think would be a good time to start venturing out. I made a Netflix account and watched Psycho about 3 more times after screening it in class. There was nothing I can say negatively of the film. It’s an absolute classic in all its right. My favorite movie of all the screenings this semester thus far. The acting was great, cinematography was fantastic, the music drew me in the most.

Which reminds me, I would have never guessed this song was referencing Psycho lol

December 12th, 2010

Written on the Wind

Posted by dmaldonado in Uncategorized

Watching this film was definitely a treat because of the strong use of COLOR! Not only was this a visually appealing film, but the plot of the film was interesting as well as the characters themselves. My favorite scene were the ones down by the river. The colors were so vivid, the scenes were so photographic. I have to say that Marylee’s character was the most interesting to me. I was a bit reluctant to see a melodramatic film because I honestly thought it would get annoying. But it did not. At times I found the overly dramatic scenes amusing. But that is what makes it a classic. It was specifically intended to embellish on dramatizing the film and I think Sirk did a fantastic job.

December 9th, 2010

Film Analysis 2

Posted by dmaldonado in Uncategorized

Douglas Sirk’s Written on the Wind (1956) is a classic melodramatic film. The film touches upon many societal issues. There are conflicts about difference between social classes, relationships among men and women, questions of masculinity, family relationships, alcoholism, and many others. A scene that resonated with me the most was when Marylee quite literally dances her father to death. This scene in particular commentates about the individual characters in general but most importantly the relationship amongst family members, particularly in a wealthy family.

The scene caught my attention because of the upbeat music as well as the vivid use of color, but most importantly because of the way the scene was filmed was very interesting to me. The scene was a very brilliant way of showing Jasper’s death because there is no dialogue but so much is being said. There is much contrast on what first appears to be a cheerful upbeat scene as opposed to what was actually happening outside of Marylee’s room.

The scene begins with Marylee entering her room after being driven home by the police. After lighting her cigarette and grabbing the photograph of Mitch, she begins to dance. Immediately one notices the reasons for her actions, being Mitch, the center of her world. When watching the scene, I also noticed the lighting, how it competes with the upbeat music, it was not as vibrant as other scenes, perhaps because it is in fact at night but I think it helps to foreshadow what is about to happen and to remind us that this is in fact is not a happy scene.

There is then a cut in the scene to Jasper’s office. As he leaves the office to go up to Marylee’s room, Mitch has the gun in his hand and puts it back in the drawer. This can be perceived as another way of foreshadowing what is to come. We then go back to Marylee’s room where she is now wearing a bright red gown, also possibly another indicator of death. There is a back and forth between Jasper going up the stairs and Marylee dancing in her room, and it seems as though the closer he gets to her room, the more fiercely Marylee dances, and the louder the music gets.

It is also very ironic how when Jasper starts to fall down the stairs, the music appears to accompany the action. Another instance in which that appears to happen is when Lucy looks down the stairs, the music is almost in cue with her reaction as well. Marylee’s change of clothes may something else to pay attention to. She starts off wearing white, then black, then red. Also her clothes become more revealing. This change in wardrobe can help symbolize the father’s death as well as Marylee showing her “true colors.”

Also to notice is the way Jasper leaves his office to go see Marylee. He is the only person to speak in the scene, his final words and yet it is very brief. Similarly his death was very sudden as well. Also as the camera cuts between Jasper and Marylee as Jasper goes up the stairs, Marylee’s back is turned as her father goes up the stairs. This parallel  between those cuts can describe their kind of relationship. Without Marylee’s knowledge, her back is turned on her father which leads to his demise. As he continues to go up the stairs her lower part of her body is only being shown, indicating her disrespect and complete disregard towards her father. This view also  reminds the viewer as to why this situation occurred in the first place, because of her promiscuity.

This scene says a lot about the individual characters particularly Marylee and Jasper. As for Marylee, this scene shows how selfish and self centered she is. The fact alone that she begins to play music loudly at a time in which everyone appears to be sleeping along with her other actions throughout the film reinforces this idea. Marylee is completely oblivious of what is occurring outside of her room, indicating how she tends to dirsregard things that are not in her immediate world.

Jasper Hadley throughout the film is a pretty stagnant character. He is a typical  parent who cares for the well being of his children. His downfall was in part due to perhaps his downfall as a father. The way of life of the Hadleys was full of luxury and as a result, his children became spoiled and self destructive beings, completely uncapable of controlling their lives.

This scene and film in general helps to illustrate that looks are deceiving. Although from the surface, the Hadleys appear to be a very fortunate family blessed with wealth which are times associated with happiness, is in fact a family full of instability ultimately leading to tragedy.

October 26th, 2010

Umberto D.

Posted by dmaldonado in Uncategorized

This is by far, my favorite film we have watched in class. As simplistic the film appeared to be there were many hidden undertones incorporated about wealth, politics, and society. There was a good balance of drama and comedy. I loved the music playing throughout. The music really helped create a certain atmosphere, melodramatic. At times I found the film to be cute, then depressing, so many mixed emotions. The lighting in this film I found lovely. The fact that Umberto D. was about ordinary life of everyday people didn’t make it boring at all to me. This movie actually inspired me to get a netflix account and check out more movies. Definitely will watch again.


October 26th, 2010

Out of the Past

Posted by dmaldonado in Uncategorized

I really enjoyed this film, I especially enjoyed Bailey’s narration throughout the film, which was new in comparison to the films we have seen so far. I found the ending to be pretty sad, I wanted Kathy and Bailey to run away together secretly. Although Kathy is considered a villain I can’t help but find her likable. Overall I can honestly say this movie kept my attention and I wouldn’t mind watching it again. I definitely see characteristics of style of noir films, particularly mainly night time setting. Moral ambiguity also being an obvious theme in the film. I kept questioning all of the characters throughout the film.

October 22nd, 2010

Film Analysis

Posted by dmaldonado in Uncategorized

Vittorio De Sica’s Umberto D. (1952) by Dear Films, appears to be a film of the mundane, but also addresses many key social and political issues people faced during this era. In the scene where Umberto is contemplating whether or not to beg for money, music is used to create a mood in order to express the characters struggle, along with many other techniques which were characteristic of Italian Neorealist films. The film was intended to bring to life the harsh realities that everyday people face in an artistic way.

The scene keys in with music which plays throughout the film and Umberto and Flike are seen walking. The use of  non diegetic sound creates a certain mood in the film which represents the mood of Umberto, because the music is more prominent during certain events Umberto faces. The architecture of the scene is at a slope, making the shots appear very photographic. The fact that Umberto and Flike are sitting at the end of a slope can be symbolic for how Umberto may be feeling at the moment. Possibly feeling as though he is quite literally at the tip of his breaking point, he decides to do the unthinkable.

There is then tracking leading to a close up of Umberto allowing for us the audience to dig deeper into his psychology. With the gesture of his hands and the close up of him rubbing his forehead, his frustration is evident. The man who Umberto is about to beg for money enters the scene, and the camera does not move to accomodate space for the character, so he is a bit cut off the edge of the frame. This was certainly done intentionally in order to feel the discomfort Umberto felt approaching this man and beg him for money. Visually this scene showed us Umberto’s physical discomfort when encountering the man.

When the man walks away, he dissapears off the edge of the frame the same way he was introduced into the frame. The focus then returns with a closeup of Umberto but then quickly changes to a wider shot of the location when Umberto gives the hat to Flike so he can beg for him. The focus is no longer on just Umberto which is why the camera can show the rest of the location. This scene is particularly showing Umberto’s psychology so now he is concerned with the public which is now being seen in the shot. Point of view shots are also being shown because it’s from Umberto’s perspective, especially when he is hiding behind the pillar and he keeps looking towards Flike.

Once Umberto notices his friend the take is filled with shot reverse shots in order to show the characters going back and forth with their conversation. Once his friend boards the train there are high angle  shots of Umberto and low angle of his friend showing the inferiority Umberto is feeling at the moment because of his financial situation. I found that the lighting was very soft on Umberto in that shot as opposed to his friend in order to emphasize Umberto’s emotional state.

This scene can be related to many different themes. It can be solely described as a scene describing Umberto’s psychology, or a scene reflecting on society and what is considered acceptable. Throughout the film, Umberto shows time and time again the importance of retaining his integrity and although tempted to beg for money, he managed to fight it. This scene shows moral values of the society during this time, despite the hardships many people faced, Umberto choose to hold on to his dignity because he concerned that to be more valueable.

Many elements were characteristic of Neorealistic films. Umberto D. used musical scores in order to create a melodramatic tone to the film, as well as using long takes. A common theme in Neorealistic films was depicting everyday life of everyday people, particularly poverty. Umberto D. definitely contained these elements which were key to this style of film and presented them in a very artistic and photographic way. This film took place after the war which shifted away from escapism which was popular during the war, and now brought about the brutal reality of many peoples lives. As opposed to avoiding reality and using film as a distraction, film was now being used to call attention to everyday struggle and having a more realistic approach.

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