Friday, October 31, 2014
Thursday, October 30, 2014
the master of suspense. Perf.
Anthony Perkins (Norman Bates)
and Janet Leigh (Marion Crane)
[Suzie Vargas in the touch of evil] )
Nominated for four Academy awards
(Sub-categories for B&W)
Psycho was very great film full of suspense. I wasn't disappointed at all while watching it.I was looking forward to every A3 class to began watching because during lunch i was predicting what would happen next.
Psycho was the first movie i ever watched with narratives meaning you follow one character for the first 40 minutes than the next for the rest of the movie. That's what really confused me after Lila Crane dies by Normans "So called mother" i really thought the movie was over or that that was going to replay even further from the beginning but they did what nobody else did put another narrative after the scene so they can solve the missing persons case. I really thought Normans mother was still alive because i would see her in the window or hear he voice i even seen Norman carry her down the steps. The domination of Normans mother was so strong on Norman that he would try to be his mother. I found this out when Sam grabbed Norman and snatched his wig off. That scene is what made me realize Normans mother was just a skeleton and he was both characters.
Wednesday, October 29, 2014
The ending of psycho was really shocking. Finding out that Norman had actually murdered his mother and her husband really caught you by surprise. To protect himself from the pain of what he had done he (metaphorically) gave half his life to his mother. Switching personalities from her to himself in the matter of seconds. After watching the ending I reflected on the film and there are several parts in the movie where you can point out that the mother was not there. For example when norman was arguing with his mom every time one of the two personalities talked one had to pause to Norman could switch to the other. Also when Norman was carrying the deceased body of his mother down the stairs, she was telling him to let go but wasn't moving at all her body was completely limp. I really enjoyed the suspense and irony of this movie. I view this film as a true, horror classic that can still be watched and enjoyed even in today's developing and more improved cinema.
This movie was interesting because it was kind of a crime investigation type movie but yet it had some jump scares that actually got me even though its an old movie. For example a scare that got me was when the victims sister went into the phyco's basement and found his mother in a chair, when she turned the chair it was just a skeleton and this got me because I expected it to look like a recent death, not someone who has been dead for years and years.
In the movie they made the phyco seem like a suspect because of how nervous he was when he was being questioned and he wouldn't answer everything or have short / undescriptive answers.
I thought it was strange when they debriefed the situation and said that he thought he was two people and that's what caused him to act so crazy, I found it interesting because I never would have thought that's what was wrong with him, he even dressed up as his mother.
Its important to notice things such as in the beginning of the movie she had on a white bra but then around the time when she stole the $40,000 she had a black bra which could symbolize evil, compared to when she had on white which makes you think more positive.
The amount of suspense kept the film entertaining, and from class to class had me wondering and interested on what exactly would happen next.
In the case of observation, I had also mentioned in my prediction of the ending that there would potentially be one character living, typically in other films, the most innocent. Usually it is a blond haired woman, fair skinned with light eyes to represent that innocence, but in this case it was quite different. The last living character was in fact a woman with fair skin, but a woman with brown hair and dark eyes as well.
Overall it is safe to say that the movie itself was satisfying. The effects weren't all too bad either, though you can definitely see the influence Star Wars had on the movie. Between the design of the ship, the robots, the creatures--they can all be compared.
Monday, October 27, 2014
Okay, good news: No more randomly playing tense music.
I have to say, watching these old movies really shows me how these movies had aged ever since this movie's release in 1960. I'm not going to touch on aspects such as the black and white color, but I will touch on aspects such as the scenes and how they're done. Obviously from above, I want to talk about the "stabbing in the shower" scene, especially with how nonchalant the stabber was with stabbing Marion as it seemed slow, and no real force seems me to seen.
One last thing I'd like to touch on was the "special effects", obviously there isn't going to be much of them since this film is old, but honestly, it's a bit weird seeing there was practically no blood on Marion, but only splashed a bit around the bathtub. Heck, there wasn't even see-able stab wounds from the attack.
Though, I'm sure at the time, this film must've been wonders for the citizens during the 1960's.
Thursday, October 23, 2014
movies that I liked whether it was funny or scary I've always watched movies. Watching movies was always
a family pastime.I remember my parents taking me and my siblings to see Lilo and Stitch in the movie theater
as a family. My family always used to go see outdoor movies and these are memories that stuck with me.
I've watched plenty of movies in school that were related to the material we were learning. In this class I
expect to really notice and learn film terminology and be introduced to new movies I haven't seen or maybe
even thought about watching. I feel like coming in to this class I’m in something that I’ve always knew but
never took the time to actually go into depth.
First off, I'd like to say this movie has a decent set up so far, with one of the female workers nabbing a ton of money in order to go off with her boyfriend from a wealthy individual that planned to use the money else-how.
Still though, the movie does get a bit awkward with using its tense music. I get the first time it was used, when a person she worked for recognized her in the car, and the police somewhat stalks her. But even when the police stalks her, it doesn't seem that there isn't really any MAJOR danger besides the police being nearby, and the tense music starts blasting as the main female starts to nonchalantly drive away from the situation. It just feels a bit awkward as nothing really is happening besides driving sections and the female looking nervous as people talk in the background.
I'll have to see how the rest of the movie fairs, but it seems decent so far-(psycho theme starts playing) WHAT IS HAPPENING?!
I am both confused and intrigued by this post; what is this Man of Evil of which you speak? Are you confusing another film with Orson Welles's film noir classic Touch of Evil? I realize you were absent during some of our screenings. Let me know if you need to catch up or if we need to develop an alternate assignment.
Wednesday, October 22, 2014
Psycho is a film made in 1960, it's a suspense/horror movie that grabs your attention with its suspense and creepiness. The black and white seems to enhance the spookinest during the film. Marion is overly paranoid after stealing the money from her boss, every person she encounters she gets nervous. Getting anxious off the simplest questions of her name and when asked for her drivers license (when police officer pulled her over). Then you are introduced to Norman. A very well mannered but creepy young man. He seems to like marion, but has weird attributes about him. The way he spoke to marion when she was asking about his mother was leading me more towards the feeling that this man was in fact the psycho in this movie.
The movie Alien was a pretty good movie. I enjoyed the movie as a whole but it was hard to get past the mediocre gore (even though that was probably top notch graphics back then). Being so used to the quality of gore and use of technology we have today for filming, it was hard to go back and watch a film like this. The cat in the film confused me he would show up at the most inconvenient times for the space crew. This isn't a movie I wouldn't want to watch again, unless there was absolutely nothing else on.
Finally, the Alien is here. I like how the Alien is designed in this movie. Since, we technically do not know what Aliens look like, it is an interesting look for an alien. It walks on two legs, like humans, and has a tail, like an animal. This is my question, since the alien has mammal-like body parts and ways, did they take that into consideration? I think so, they wanted to portray the alien that way. Something unwonted and different from the usual alien movies like E.T and so on. When people think of aliens they think green and big eyes, so they wanted something different.
I also liked when the alien came into the movie. It grew in another person body, which is very different from what other people would think. Most people think the Alien would come straight out of the egg, and be there. But this movie made you think they immediately got rid of the alien, and let the man live. It did trick me for a second, then I thought "well if the movie is about an alien, it can't go away that fast."
I also liked how the alien only went after the humans, not the cat. Did the human do something to the aliens? Or did it just pick humans as its main food source. We eat cows and chickens, not foxes and rats. So, maybe the alien will only eat humans, because it is its main food source. I liked seeing this, not only does my favorite character live, but the alien must have a thought process. It must be able to think, and process what is going on. Maybe, the alien is smarter than us, it is able to go through the vents, and make its way through the space ship, that means it must know the layout. I know if I got into the ship for the first time, I would get lost or not know anything. The alien must know everything about the ship or a basic layout.
I hope to see more of how the alien gets a better idea of the ship or a better idea of humans. I want to see the alien get better at not getting caught, and catching people. I hope to see the alien get smarter and be able to process things better. Can't wait~
Tuesday, October 21, 2014
For example, when they're looking for the alien that had separated itself from the man's face, it falls unexpectedly from the ceiling onto the woman below. Thinking the alien is falling in order to attack, I was surprised to see that instead it was dead. Another example is when another man is looking for the cat on the lower deck of the ship. In this instance, he comes into contact with a full-grown, deadly alien that then kills him. My point is, the movie isn't too disappointing as far as the suspense factor really goes.
Moving on, I find the story-line thus far to be interesting. I find the plot to not do so much as bore me. There's often twists, shocks, anticipating moments in order to keep the viewer entertained. I value highly the way the cameras move so rhythmically and slowly in order to add to suspense. I admire the way the lighting adds to the eerie thought that there is this unknown being in their presence. It adds to the mystery.
I find as an observation to both this movie and even hundreds of others, that when people are to be killed, if there is one character to live, it is almost always the most innocent character. With that being said, it's usually a female, often blond haired, light eyed, in order to hint at the idea of a "perfect person," or even a Christ-like figure if you will. I'm interested to see how that plays out, and if anyone survives.
Monday, October 20, 2014
Today, the movie really started to get good. I'm more into the horror and suspense movies so Alien is meeting my expectations. I think I actually like this movie better than the other movies we have watched.
When they brought the guy in with the alien creature on his face I thought he was a goner until they said it was giving him oxygen. This was pretty strange. I still didn't think he would live though. Then, when they noticed the creature had fallen off his face and that it was dead, I questioned it. Was it really dead? Why did it detach itself from the guy's face? Also, was the guy really okay? He had woken up and seemed fine to the others but the scene left me with a feeling something strange was going to happen.
Then this happened:
Saturday, October 18, 2014
Throughout the film, I noticed how intelligent she really was. Unfortunately, her intelligence wasn't realized by the men, who barely paid attention to anything that she said. If she gave them orders, such as telling them not to let the man attacked by the alien claw back onto the spaceship, they defied her authority completely. She warned them that they could all get killed if he were to be let back in, and guess what happened? They all got killed. What a surprise.
In an attempt to destroy the aliens once and for all, Ripley activated the automatic detonation system (sounds intimidating, doesn't it?). In just ten minutes, the ship was to explode, which would also destroy the extraterrestrials. It became so intense when she was rushing around to get to the exit in the labyrinthine spaceship. As Mr. Monahan pointed out, the exits were located on the opposite side of the spaceship from the automatic detonation system. Along the way out, there was a massive alien, and it was truly amazing that she was able to avoid being attacked by it. Luckily, just in the nick of time, Ripley was safe, or so she thought. She had separated herself from Nostromo just in time, and watched it explode.
But that wasn't the end. It wasn't over; all was not safe and sound yet. I could tell from the music, the cinematography, and by Ripley's facial expressions that danger was still lurking on the spaceship. As Ripley was undressing and getting comfortable, I saw something strange-looking behind her. It looked like an alien, and it turns out that it was. Like the wind, she ran to her spacesuit, got her weapon, and set out to fight the alien. After about thirty intense seconds, the alien was finally out. But it climbed back into another part of the ship, so Ripley blasted it out, along with the other aliens that were still inside the spaceship. Finally, she was safe from harm.
But the harsh reality kicked in: Ripley was the only person out of the entire Nostromo crew that was still alive. But it also showed how strong of a woman she was, and how she proved the guys wrong. She knew that something was wrong with Ash, who turned out to be a robot who was plotting to kill all of them, early on in the film. But the other guys didn't see it. I'm not saying that they deserved to die, but they were definitely asking for it.
Alien is now one of my favorite movies, it's incredible in every way, Not only are the special effects far ahead of their time, but the combination of great music, cinematography, storyline, and acting all make for a killer film.
Thursday, October 16, 2014
One of my favorite aspects of Alien is the use of foreshadowing. It's beautifully done: not too revealing, but revealing enough. Throughout the majority of this film, there is a hauntingly eerie feeling conveyed to the viewer. And it's not some cheap suspense music or visual cues, but frighteningly well-planned cinematography and sound effects, as well as spine-chilling music. When one of the men aboard the ship went searching for the cat, I noticed a few things that signaled trouble. First of all, it was raining, and there were metal chains clashing together like wind chimes. And then the camera showed a close-up of one of the chains for a few seconds. Again, I knew that this shot had to mean something; it wasn't done just because the cinematographers felt like it. As the man kept looking for the cat, I began to hear this heavy squeaking sound. It sounded like something big. And then a tell-tale piece of evidence appeared: old slimy skin. Usually when monsters or aliens shed skin, that means they have grown. That can't be good. And it wasn't long until the humongous beast had appeared right behind the man. His time was up.
Right after, the movie jumped to the control center, showing another astronaut sitting at the computer. Not only was the sound of the computer keys creepy, especially since it was so ear-piercingly quiet otherwise. More foreshadowing was implemented in this scene as well: when he was attempting to do research on the alien lurking around the spaceship, all the computer could say was: "unable to compute" and "available date insufficient". Once again I said, "that can't be good".
One of the scariest scenes was when another astronaut was crawling through the hatches, which were just about as small as air ducts, looking for the alien. The music gave me goosebumps, and I noticed how normal sounds were manipulated to sound terrifying. With every inch the guy moved, I kept wonder when the alien would appear. The rising tension increased when he found gooey fluid on the floor, which made it clear that the alien was nearby. But where? The guy did have a tracking device, and so did the alien. The other astronauts, particularly a woman, was watching his coordinate on the screen. You could see the fear in her face, especially at the gut-wrenching moment when she saw that the alien was moving directly towards him. That was the end of him.
I could go on for hours about how much I love this movie, but let me just say this: it's beyond amazing, especially for 1979. I can't wait to see how it ends, yet I'm also disappointed to see it end so soon.
Monday, October 13, 2014
The weirdest thing that happened at the end of the movie was that it turned out ironically that Sanchez actually was guilty and confessed to committing the crime. I wasn't expecting that to happen. I wonder how Quinlan and Menzies knew, or if they had just assumed and were right.
I recall when we started watching Touch of Evil it was really confusing to me. I didn't really understand the beginning but by the end it was more clear and I understood it better. The movie was okay but it wouldn't be a movie that I would want to watch on my own time or more than once. I hope the next movie we watch, Alien is more interesting.
Saturday, October 11, 2014
The 1979 movie Alien is very deserving of its Academy Award for Visual Effects. Within the first few seconds of watching this film, I was amazed at the special effects. There's no doubt that it was far ahead of its time; even by today's standards it fares well. The cinematography was astonishing as well, with nice, smooth pans and beautiful tracking shots. I thought back to Rocky, remembering that Mr. Monahan taught us about the use of the Steadicam in order to film smooth footage in a variety of bumpy terrains. As an Animation student, I appreciate the way that the title of this film was animated in the introduction: it started out with only part of the name revealed, and then the rest of it slowly filled in.
Aside from these aspects of Alien, I also like the storyline. The scene that stood out to me most was when one of the scientists aboard the spaceship fell into the pit that housed the alien eggs. Having watched similar films, I already knew what was going to happen, and it definitely would be pretty. I got anxious when the scientist moved closer and closer to one of the eggs, wondering in my head, "what is he doing?" If that were me, I would've ran away as quickly as possible without any hesitation. But he just keep moving closer, daring to touch one of the eggs. As you can imagine, that wasn't a good idea, and it wasn't long before the extraterrestrial was wrapped around his face. The doctors attempted to get it off, but they were no match for it. It became very clear that it didn't like to be messed with. It had the potential to destroy anything that tried to attack it. But what was even more interesting, albeit frightening, is that the doctors found out that the alien was controlling the man's breathing, which kept him alive. That's even more worrisome, because it could potentially mean that even if the doctors find a way to kill the alien, the scientist that it attacked could end up dead as well.
In this intense moment of the film, the bell rang, and the period was over, leaving me eager to see what will happen next. Will the doctors find a way to kill the alien without crippling their comrade? Or will the alien win this game? Will more alien eggs start hatching? If one thing is certain, it's that trouble lies ahead for everyone on the spaceship.
Wednesday, October 8, 2014
Tuesday, October 7, 2014
When we first started watching my first thoughts on Touch of Evil were that the movie didn't really seem that interesting and I was a little confused on what was going on. I didn't really get it and wasn't really following the story but the plot became clearer as we kept watching. I noticed the movie started out with a tracking shot and then showed the two main characters, Susan and Vargas who are in Mexico where they witness a car explode and kill two people. Vargas is a detective and wants to investigate the case. I also noticed a few themes throughout the film such as racism between Americans and Mexicans and police corruption/corruption of power.
When we continued watching the film in class, it started getting more interesting with the framing of Susan and the murder of Grandi by Quinlan. I wasn't expecting something like this to happen. Quinlan was able to frame someone else, which supports the theme of corruption of power. As a detective who frames others for things he is responsible for it shows how his character is somewhat evil. I'm interested in seeing how the film ends and what Vargas will do to prove that Quinlan is behind the murder and other crimes that he framed people of.
Monday, October 6, 2014
Saturday, October 4, 2014
When Shawn Duplessie hit the "play" button, the beginning of Touch Of Evil appeared. Immediately, I was taken aback by the fact that it was in black and white, because I have never watched a black and white movie or tv show, for that matter. But it didn't take long for me to sort of forget that it was in black and white, because I was focusing on the storyline. It started out with Vargas, a detective, and his wife on their honeymoon, enjoying their time in Mexico. All of a sudden, a nearby car explodes. Someone had planted a bomb in it, and it is Vargas's job to figure out who. But Quinlan, a sloppy, overweight police officer who is always pictured smoking a cigar, stands in his way. Clearly there is hostility between the two, because Quinlan is plotting to destroy Vargas's career. He is trying to frame Susan, Vargas's American wife of making the car explode. He planted evidence, including a box full of explosives, to make it seem as though she was the culprit. But Vargas wasn't buying it, which angered Quinlan.
I am interested in seeing how this movie will turn out, and who will get convicted of the crime, if anyone. It annoys me that Quinlan is abusing his job, since he knows how to manipulate evidence due to his many years of experience. But I appreciate how Orson Wells, the actor who played Quinlan, and the movie's director, had such a strong character. As I said before, he always had a cigar either in his mouth or in his hand, along with a candy bar. In the scene at the bar, it was clear that he was also a heavy drinker. He also used a cane, and there were plenty of moments when he appeared out of breath and exhausted. He spoke rather unclearly, slurring his words (maybe he had a little too much to drink...). All of this contributes to his sloppy character, one that sticks out to me more than anyone else's. He was also racist and ignorant, and thought that Mexicans were inferior to him. He even said the notable line "I don't speak Mexican" despite the fact that Mexican is not even a language. I'm surprised he didn't make a comment about tacos.
Aside from the characters, I took some time to notice the cinematography and special effects used. It's so weird, in this day and age, to think that cameras actually existed back in 1958, when Touch of Evil was made. And to be honest, the camerwork was not all that bad. Sure, there were some instances of a shaky camera in instances that would never occur in today's films, but overall I had no issue with the way the camera was used. It's also interesting to think about how the movie production team was able to display the exploding car. Compared to modern films, which use top-notch animation programs, this effect was poor, and extremely unrealistic. But I still wonder how it was created before this computer software was years away from being created.
At first, I wondered why you are showing us this film Mr. Monahan, immediately disappointed that it was in black and white. I wondered, "Why couldn't he show us something much newer?" But now, I'm glad that I've gotten the chance to watch it, and look forward to finishing the film on Tuesday.
Friday, October 3, 2014
Touch of Evil First Impressions
Thursday, October 2, 2014
After finishing, "Man On Wire," in class on Tuesday, I realized how profound, inspiring, and well-put together the documentary is. Looking at the documentary from a trite perspective, one might question its purpose. A crazy Frenchman tightropes across the Twin Towers... What else do we need to know? That was my attitude towards the documentary in the beginning. It's seems like today, we are always watching some person performing a daring stunt on the news, internet, television, etc. Modern technology and mass communication has desensitized us in a way to awe-inspiring events like Philippe Petit's walk across the Twin Towers.
For Philippe, tightroping across the Twin Towers was not just a stunt or an act for publicity, it was his dream. It was a dream that constantly haunted him; a dream that he would stop at nothing to fulfill. It was interesting to watch Philippe and his team formulate their plan, as well as all of the tension and arguments between the members. It is a testament to the challenge of working on a dangerous stunt like this, and the substantial effort it takes.
The documentary did a phenomenal job of showing the process of Philippe and his team sneaking into the Twin Towers until the moment that Philippe walked across the wire. As everything unfolded, I was at the edge of my seat, waiting and waiting for the big moment. I thought it was powerful how the documentary used pictures of Philippe walking across the tightrope between the Twin Towers as the climax. In my opinion, the use of pictures really conveyed a feeling that this was a once in a lifetime event. These pictures captured a moment in a time, that could never be and never will be replicated.
At the end of the movie, we see an older Philippe walking across a tightrope. Philippe's quote inspired me: "Life should be lived on the edge of life. You have to exercise rebellion: to refuse to tape yourself to rules, to refuse your own success, to refuse to repeat yourself, to see every day, every year, every idea as a true challenge - and then you are going to live your life on a tightrope"
As a person who is often very reluctant to take challenges and embark on daring adventures, Philippe's quote really hit me. No matter how scary your dream may seem, you should still reach for it because the possibilities are endless. Anything is possible when you set your mind to it.