com). Pricilla Dean, despite her odd and some might say crooked features and curvy figure, had an interesting though brief career offering audiences a unique and fierce performance in Outside the Law in 1920 (Stanford.edu, 2011).
It's rare nowadays to have published short fiction in movie magazines. This one utilizes five stars under the headline and above the title.
This article demonstrates that human beings still write simple "how-to" style articles even nowadays, and that explaining from one person to another how to accomplish something is a timeless endeavor. The headline of this article demonstrates what a new profession the movies were and represented a field that one could "break into." One typically wouldn't see an article of such simplicity during modern times. Another interesting aspect of this article is that it's written by Mabel Normand. Mabel Normand was an actress and comedienne of the era; she was very popular with audiences and starred in movies like Mabel's Married Life and Mabel's Busy Day (imdb.com). Her last film was in 1921 but it was boycotted mostly by audiences in lieu of the odd death of Tod Browning (imdb.com). People wondered if she might have a hand in it due to her jealousy over Browning's affair with Minter (imdb.com).
This page displays the heavy stylistic choices of the decade with the collage of pictures placed into a curved, larger shape -- evocative of antique furniture such as a decorative screen or mirror.
The headline of this article uses the dash to break up the word "Shh" a grammatical choice that one simply doesn't see often nowadays. The byline of "Irma, the Ingenue" is a quaint way to give someone credit for the article.
"Film-Flam" is a colloquialism of the decade that one simply doesn't hear nowadays. The decorative banner that is scroll-like as a means of decorating the headline is yet another stylistic choice that isn't used often in modern times. The photograph of the woman crouching in imitation of the RCA dog might be considered derogatory nowadays…… [Read More]
" (p. 52)
Some of the famous action adventures include the latest ventures like Transformers. It is a classic example of new age action adventure movies which has a great deal of science fiction involved. Some action adventures also include a healthy dose of comedy like Jackie Chan movies such as Rush Hour.
Romance is possibly the one genre that is not likely to disappear. Even though over time, it has taken on a different role, it has always been the central strength of cinema. Romance had always been there and there have been some unforgettable romantic movies over the decades. Movies like "An Affair to remember," and Casablanca were the types of romantic movies we saw in old days. Things have changed and romance has become more cynical, less melodramatic but equally charming. There are still times when some traditional type of romantic movies comes forth like "Notebook" but modern audiences have lost the taste for sappy dramas. More people will happily watch "You've got mail" or "My Big Fat Greek Wedding" than some old melodrama simply because tastes have changed and people can digest romantic with comedy but not romance alone.
Animated movies are now more popular than ever before because of the advancement in technology. These movies became popular with Disney's various cinematic adaptations of fairy tales. But over the years, they have become more sophisticated and full length movies are being made using animation. Some known names include Lion King, Ice Age 1, 2 and 3 and also The Incredibles. These movies have no actual humans as characters but these ventures are so realistically developed that no one can call them cartoon or simple animations. They look and act real with voiceovers by famous actors and hence have become a very popular genre in Hollywood.
Biopic films are neither as popular as animated nor are they as frequently made but they are still an important part of what constitutes good cinema. Biopic films are actually "biographical films" which…… [Read More]
Movie production is one of the world's most enduring, exciting, and economically prosperous industries. Whether Bollywood or Hollywood, Bonnie and Clyde or Batman Returns, the film industry continues to rake in the dough and please a wide range of audiences. Chapter 6 of the text describes the origin of the film industry and its evolution and development. The authors also discuss the potential for film to influence cultural values as well as its importance in shaping them.
The film industry began somewhat as an offshoot of still photography, which first made an impact in the late nineteenth century. The commercial appeal of motion pictures was soon apparent and innovators in the United States and in Europe helped to develop the technologies required to run the cameras and viewing equipment. For example, early movies capitalized on the viewing box and photographic technology invented by Americans like William Dickson and George Eastman but it was the French inventors Auguste and Louis Lumiere who developed the ability to project the photographic motion pictures onto a wall or screen. As a result, the first film house opened in Paris, not the United States, in 1895. However, Thomas Edison seized upon the new projection technology and patented a projection system. Edison's company would later develop sound technologies that were used to enhance the viewing experience of early motion pictures.
The film industry flourished in the 1940s and reached its peak around 1948, when weekly revenues peaked at an astounding $90 million. The film industry in the United States has never yet enjoyed such tremendous prosperity, mostly due to the invention and popularity of the television. However, films remain one of the most vital creative industries in the nation and throughout the world.
The film industry responded to television's popularity first by attempting to trump television's technology. However, innovations such as Smell-o-Vision, 3D glasses, and peripheral vision screens fell short of revitalizing box office sales in the 1950s and 1960s. Therefore, the motion picture industry ventured where no television producer had gone before: tackling tough social and political issues that were either banned or shunned by the television industry. Films had traditionally toyed with sensitive issues such as sexuality, but until the advent of…… [Read More]
In Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer, the selfishness seems even more chilling. Henry's murder spree starts with the death of two prostitutes, and it is the lack of significance that Henry gives to those murders that is startling. It would probably be freeing to lose that connection to people, to be in a position where human life means nothing. However, it would also be alien and frightening. That is why movies like Silence of the Lambs have such a tremendous appeal; Hannibal Lecter may have killed many people, but he is clearly capable of forming some level of emotional attachment. He seems so charming and engaging that he turns into the hero of the movie, though his actions do not support that role.
Finally, serial-killer thrillers tap into the basic fear of strangers. Serial-killers are distinguished by the fact that they do not target those close to them. In Copycat, the killer actually goes after the detective in charge of the case, providing the adrenaline rush of an escape from death. In Silence of the Lambs, Clarice is only momentarily in danger, but the serial killer's victim is placed in a pit in the ground, in a dangerous and demeaned position. The fact that she turns the tables on the killer, by abducting his little dog and holding it hostage takes the vicarious scare further by showing that someone could triumph in that situation. Of course, Henry: Portrait of Serial Killer may be the scariest movie of them all, because it portrays Henry sitting in the mall, casually scanning for his next victim; most movie-goers have walked in a mall at sometime, and that scene makes it clear that they were all potential victims.
Serial-killer suspense movies evoke a wide-array of emotions. They challenge the audience to try to understand the serial killer and predict future actions, making people feel intellectually stimulated by the movie. They allow people the vicarious thrill of absolute selfishness, as well as the repulsion such selfishness engenders in a normal person. Finally, they tap into the basic human fear of strangers, and make audience members aware of their own vulnerabilities. Given how many emotions are involved in watching…… [Read More]
Devi's life is shown as sadly representative of many women's in India of lower castes. She is forced to marry as a child to a man she does not love, because her parents cannot afford to feed her. Her husband beats and humiliates her. Devi's abduction by bandits is portrayed as a relief, rather than penance for the young woman.
After Devi is abducted in the film, her anger against men is so intense; she physically lashes out even at her lover. However, eventually she finds a sense of friendship and fellowship amongst the bandits. The film explains Devi's criminality as a product of her oppression due to her caste and her gender. It turns her life into an instructive parable for the reader as to what can happen when the marginalized people of the world have no voice. "The press is fascinated by her boldness, by the way she disguises herself as a policeman, by her practice of befriending young girls and interrupting the weddings of children" (Ebert 1994).
However, although the film may be artistically powerful and be motivated by good intentions, the fact that it is about a living person raises additional ethical questions that might not be raised by Shakespeare's appropriation of Macbeth and Richard III, or even Oliver Stone's lose historical interpretation of the assassination of John F. Kennedy in JFK. An artistic work can transform a living person's reputation and life in a manner that has a real, material impact, as in the case of Devi's assassination.
Ultimately, in a free society there is a limit to how much a causal connection between art and action can be punished. The would-be assassin of Ronald Reagan was obsessed with the film Taxi Driver, a great classic of modern cinema, and wanted to impress one of the actresses in the film, Jodie Foster, with his murderous…… [Read More]
Surprises are definitely not this film's strongpoint and whoever enjoys them might want to look away. Nonetheless, the acting and the story together compensate for the lack of tension and shock.
The movie shows how people are trapped because of their belonging to a particular group. Because of the insecurities they feel, individuals are unable to discover themselves and are thus likely to spend their whole lives feeling sorry for what they are. It takes only a small time for Ana to mature and realize that there is nothing wrong with her, whereas it is almost impossible for her mother to escape the prejudice she was taught during her lifetime. Even when she is presented with the opportunity of enjoying herself, Carmen prefers to leave her daughter and the rest of the factory workers.
While the movie follows Ana as she grows from a teenager into a woman, it also shows how her principles were unaltered by the environments she came across. Even with her strong determination, Ana is aware that she still has much to learn and is not reluctant to admit her lack of confidence when the circumstances ask for it.
Although there are several stereotypes in this movie, it is not directed at the ordinary public, who is fond of seeing happy endings the way they were accustomed to. Ana proves that she can become happy without leaving behind her particularities and embracing the life society promotes. She does not lose weight and she does not become white (in character) so as for the public to appreciate her. She nevertheless succeeds in getting the public positive reception with the fact that she loves what she is and is not embarrassed of it.
Ana's mother, Carmen, is the villain in this story. However, whereas people are familiar to hating villains, this is one who is more difficult to detest. It is obvious that Carmen did not want to become the biased person she did and that the surrounding environment offered…… [Read More]
The rapid approach of the train is contrasted with slow, sensuous and lingering shots of the partially unclothed woman.
This contrast of beauty and peril speaks directly to the experience of the filmmaker himself. Among the countless experimental techniques exhibited in Vertov's film, he employs a variety of modes which suggest self-reflexivity, especially as it relates to the filmmaker's balance of beauty and peril. From the very opening scene, there is a meta-reality implied by the acknowledgement of the content itself as being cinematic in nature. That is, the opening theatre sequence in which viewers file in, an orchestra prepares and a man readies the projector seems almost to reverse the concept of opening credits by mimicking the experience of the audience itself.
Such devices are employed thereafter as a vehicle for the delivery of the film itself. Long sweeping shots capture the filmmaker himself, traversing a symbolic demonstration of modern life. As Vertov observes the lives of citizens in the various Soviet cities used for the film's gathering of imagery, he transcribes the process of creating a film to an awakening in the early outset. The images of sleeping citizens, opening factories and vistas at dawn suggest a collective morning that implies more than just the act of rising for the day. Vertov connects the experiences of morning with the presentation of the filmmaker setting out for a day of observation. The connection implies that the morning being portrayed is not necessarily a single morning on a single day of shooting but, instead, a representation of the experience of morning as it varies across the experience of different Soviet lives. This is the virtual gaze in action, presenting morning not as we might perceive to be the beginning of a linear narrative, but morning as an act daily awakneing that is highly differentiated by universal to the human experience. This corresponds with Friedberg's explanation that "the virtual gaze is not a direct perception but a received perception mediated through representation." Friedberg continues by explaining that the virtual gaze "travels in an imaginary flanerie through an imaginary elsewhere and imaginary elsewhen." (Friedberg, p. 2)
Quite so, the way that Vertov jumps rapidly from one place to another, presumably representing infinite moments occurring in simultaneity, and moreover the way that Vertov only reveals…… [Read More]
The couple that hopes to adopt Juno's baby is well cast (especially Jennifer Garner, the wife) too.
Juno, above all, takes center stage with her pretty face, her ponytail and hoodie, and her wise cracks, which is quite typical of an intelligent, perceptive high school girl. Paulie too is an ideal actor for that role as he and Juno go from just having some teenage affection for each other into a more serious couple facing a more serious issue that could have been a tense disaster but for their intelligence and social savvy.
When Juno runs into Jennifer Garner (the woman who will adopt Juno's baby) towards the end of the film, even though the married couple's bonds are fragile so Juno may not be giving up the baby to a couple, the viewer sees how perfect a choice Garner was for this role.
What's the theme? Do other elements work together to develop this theme? Those in the pro-life movement who thought this film was about their particular political position are wrong. And those in the pro-choice movement who believed this was about them got it wrong, too. The real theme, according to the New York Times, is "pro-adulthood"; Page said it is "absurd" to suggest that it is a pro-life film. She notes that Juno had a choice to make and she made it apart from any ideology or political viewpoint. Directing: Jason Reitman made all the right moves, from setting, to actors, to music, and even though there had been 2 other movies in 2007 about unplanned pregnancies, Juno stood out as a comedy with class, style, and substance.
Is the setting effective? Why? The movie was filmed in British Columbia at a secondary school that is 100% believable as a high school setting.
The soundtrack and music are wonderful in this film. Recording artist Kimya Dawson used music she had previously recorded that were similar to what Page wanted (Moldy Peaches type music). The soundtrack has 19 songs (from a wide variety of artists including the Kinks, Buddy Holly and the Velvet Underground) and it went to #1 on the Billboard charts. The cinematography was fantastic, including the winter scenes with snow falling in Canada. The camera angles, art design, editing,…… [Read More]
What is the movie houses response goal? The movies houses would like to take advantage of the fact that YouTube and other social outlets have a massive following. If the movie houses can generate enough excitement by running ads along with trailers and clips of the movies then they turn a negative into a positive. Secondly, the movie houses would like to generate additional revenues from online distribution, but so far, that has been a tough nut to crack.
What can the movie industry learn from the music industry regarding online problems? Since the movie industry is still coping with millions of illegal downloads of music, it would seem that the music industry is still learning itself. That being said, the movie industry has probably taken the only approach that it can possibly take at this juncture and learned to play along with the illegal downloads as much as possible while still attempting to track those who refuse to play by the rules.
Should motion pictures still use YouTube to promote their pictures? Why or why not? Sure. The old saying is 'if you can beat them, join them." As previously stated, the movie houses are currently stuck in a no-win situation unless they make partnerships with companies like YouTube. If they don't make deals, then they will only continue to lose out on any potential revenue they could be earning.
Go to YouTube and find your favorite movie, what did you see? Where there any advertisements next to your movie? Was it effective? Why or why not? True Grit (the original). There were advertisements next to the movie, but they were not effective. I was more involved in the movie and did not pay attention to…… [Read More]
They need their aggression to be released but fail to do it, as they are afraid to be judged by others. If the person is alone he will be misunderstood, but in a group of co-thinkers he maintains inner strength and becomes open. It was used by Tyler who manipulated peoples' nature in his private purposes. Tyler's phenomenon is obvious: his ideas are simple and close to people who had experienced aggression. He doesn't have any political or social program, he doesn't support any political opposition to American system: either Communists or neo-Fascists. He doesn't need it as it will limit the number of his supporters, moreover all those ideas are well-known and are well-known to be false ones. Tyler's one is new, universal and is too temptating not to be followed.
This doctrine proclaimed by Tyler has a danger for a society as it may result chaos and anarchy. A group of fanatics who have the only aim to fear everyone by terror is very dangerous. The example of international terrorism is a brilliant one to demonstrate the circumstances anarchy may cause.
The movie of course stands against Tyler, but the danger of split personality on the example of the main hero is a threat to existing social stability. The main problem is that society itself is guilty in creating this threat, proving a well know physics law about entropy (or disorder), which grows in isolated space. Is there any exit in such kind of situation? It may seem that nothing can help a person as frustration occupies his mind leaving no space for anything else. Still the author has another idea: narrator's panacea is love. Love is the only thing which can help him to survive. Love is the only thing that saves him. A strange girl named Marla, who also is disillusioned by routine life, attends the same support groups the narrator does. But different to the narrator, she has inner strength and confidence and has an opportunity to make choices, while…… [Read More]
Film Reaction -The Cooperation
Film Reaction -- the Corporation
The chapter that dealt with the investigative reporters who worked for Fox News on a show about the prevalence of bovine growth hormone in our milk supplies particularly resonated with me. I was struck by what a microcosm this vignette is with regard to the production and disclosure of knowledge in contemporary society. Multiple and competing demands are nothing new for science, but the business of science has become increasingly complex. Scientific research and development, and the application of science in praxis, is impacted by available funding, governmental initiatives, extant research, the marketplace, and political will. It is not surprising, then, when competing demands collide.
An entire spectrum of reasons exists for why information that is important to consumers might not be made available to them, even when there is potential for or known evidence of harm to the public. That spectrum of reasons surely includes issues with the purposeful omission of pertinent scientific information in briefs provided to decision-makers; the uncertainty of relevant information causing dissemination to be limited, and perhaps -- sometimes -- the information is simply not yet known. The many iterations of the investigative report commissioned by Fox News on the presence of bovine growth hormone in cows' milk falls primarily under one category: Monsanto wished to limit its exposure for culpability with regard the potential harm their milk production processes posed to consumers.
For Monsanto, the decision was an easy one. Milk production increased when milk cows were administered growth hormone -- the practice is profitable. In order to avoid bad publicity that would impact sales revenue -- until the company could adjust its practices to be more consumer-friendly -- Monsanto threatened Fox News with legal action if the story about bovine growth hormone…… [Read More]
The way the racist juror was dressed and groomed indicated a lack of class and personal pride. He was an ignorant man who had worked hard all his life, had risen to a level in society where he was above minorities and other impoverished Americans, but still not as well off as he would like to be. He had a deep seeded anger at his position in society which manifested itself as hatred toward minorities. The only way he could feel good about himself, it seemed, was to increase his own self-worth by putting down those who he felt were lower than himself.
However, Juror #10 knew, deep down in his soul, that what he said was wrong, that his beliefs were not in accordance with American ideals. This subconscious knowledge was conveyed through actions such as his wiping of his face, his fondling of his handkerchief, and his meekly surrendering to the moral outrage of the other jurors and scurrying off to sit in the corner. While he never once said that he was wrong and the others were right, his nonverbal clues gave away his emotions. And it was not only the nonverbal clues of Juror #10 but the others as well that helped bring about the dramatic action. In order to express outrage and contempt for Juror #10's racist beliefs, the other juror at first refused to make eye contact with him, turning their heads whenever he looked their way. Slowly the other jurors, demonstrating their increased outrage, stood up, walked away from the table, and turned their backs on the ignorant juror and his racist rant. While the scene may only contain dialogue from juror #10, and a racist tirade at that, the scene is filled with nonverbal communication from every actor in the room and while none of the other actors actually speak, they say a great deal.… [Read More]
An analysis is done of the accounting methods employed in the world of glitz, glamour, fame and money in other words the movie industry to assess the increasing disparity between the techniques adopted by them to arrive at the financial statement figures as opposed to those stated in the "Generally Accepted Accounting Practices."
The standards and regulations of the accounting world have been twisted to give them an entirely different meaning in the light of movie accounting. This is majorly done by distributors and studios in order to show the failure of a particular project and their by deprive the profit participants of their lawful share as per the contractual agreement.
Applications to real life scenarios have been quoted to demonstrate how movie accounting is incorporated within the financial statements. It can be concluded that this form of accounting is not only illegal but also unethical. However studios and distributors will continue to adopt these practices as the power resides in a handful of parties who have the major say in negotiating contracts.
It is rather surprising to hear that a movie that has done so well commercially could face a loss. However in recent times this is becoming the norm of the movie industry. Movie accounting is the process of adopting creative accounting practices for reporting profits in a manner such that expenditures are inflated and revenues are reduced their by decreasing the reported NET PROFIT and ultimately reducing the royalty and profit sharing payments.
Movie Accounting refers to accounting practices of studio/distributors that ranges from adoption of dishonest practices to making up fictitious companies that are used to transfer profits in the name of "service charges." As rightly said by John D. MacDonald's in his novel Free Fall in Crimson (1981) above movie accounting:
"Darling! This is the Industry! The really creative people are the accountants. A big studio got over half the profit, after setting breakeven at about three times the cost, taking twenty-five percent of income as an overhead charge, and taking thirty percent of income as a distribution charge, plus rental fees, and prime interest on what they advanced."
How Movie Accounting works?
Movie accounting can take various forms for example the most popular one is the formation of a special purpose subsidiary whereby…… [Read More]
Not only is this showing that his love is allowing him to respect her wishes and provide for her desires even if he does not share in those desires, but it also shows that he wishes for her to be pure, and provides her a way to wash away all of her activities with the men and to restore her purity. This desire for cleanliness also makes Xiu more exotic to Lao Jin and so it can only strengthen his feelings for her.
Though Xiu returns Lao Jin's love, it is a platonic, daughterly love that she feels, not a romantic or sexual love. It is possible that after all she has been through she may not be able to allow herself to feel any kind of romantic or sexual love, but even if she could feel this kind of emotion for Lao Jin, it would be in vain since the relationship could never be consummated. Lao Jin cares for her in the only way he can, which is by providing and caring for her needs. He is also a mentor and a teacher to her -- all of these things are part of the kind of relationship that one would have with a father or brother. Xiu may also have purposely avoided developing feelings for Lao Jin in a romantic sense because she fully expected to return home to her family at some point. It would have been very difficult for her to leave someone she cared for so deeply if her efforts to make it back home were successful. It's also for this same reason that she was seeking a father figure since her own family was taken away from her so quickly, and Xiu was so young. In this way Lao Jin came to replace her own father.
No matter which way you examine the love that Xiu and Lao Jin had for one another, this film is heart-wrenching and sad. The situations and characters presented are so frustrating to watch. The audience learns to feel sorry for both of these characters since Lao Jin will never be able to fulfill his love for Xiu in a positive way, and Xiu will never…… [Read More]
The last scene of the film shows Monica playing for a team in the newly-formed WNBA, with Quincy and a baby daughter cheering her on from the stands, showing that the couple has managed to find happiness and success both in their professional goals as well as in their personal relationships.
Athleticism as Knowledge?
It can be difficult at first to equate the professional development seen in this film with the concept of a knowledge worker. It is of course true in the strictest sense that athletic ability is not really the same as knowledge, and might even be considered closer to manual labor in some instances. For both Monica and Quincy, however -- and really, for any great player of any sport -- success is determined by how well they can play the game in their heads, and not just on the court. Their knowledge has to do with their own and their team's capabilities and their ability to both make decisions and get others to follow them, and this is the realm of knowledge workers (Nickols 2000).
What enables Monica to eventually earn a leadership role on her high school team, become a player on the college team despite the fierce competition, and get hired as a leader for her team in Barcelona is her ability to finally control her temper and actually use her knowledge on the court. When she plays fiercely and tries to simply get the job done with brute force -- through the sheer power of manual labor, one might say -- she ends up failing, but when she approaches the game as a knowledge worker she succeeds. For Quincy, the game is also very much about playing smart, and playing as a leader, and this is what makes him a valuable asset to his teams as well. It also means that his injury does not need to be the end of his involvement in basketball, and he could even have a career involved with the sport in some other capacity because his knowledge is still valuable even if his body can't keep up. Though knowledge workers remain replaceable, and are even perhaps replaced at faster rates as knowledge changes, it is actually more possible to keep up with knowledge changes than to try and keep our bodies functioning at a youthful level (Zunker 2006).
The relationship that exists between Monica and Quincy is…… [Read More]
As they speak, the camera will alternate among full frontal couple head shots, full frontal shoulder couple shoulder shots, full frontal close-up individual head shots and three-quarter to full profile couple head or shoulder shots.
The end of the scene shows them debarking in clear morning light at a very scenic airport in the Alps, with huge full color panorama of the snow-capped mountains in warm daylight. There is no snow on the tarmac, but we can see snow on the ground where the planes do not go. We see a full scenery panorama with the plane on the ground, could be a different and smaller plane than the first, as they may have switched planes in Paris. This airport does not have the capacity for the larger aircraft. The plane can be already stopped and the baggage handler carts are approaching as passengers debark. The camera dollies in as we see the couple leave the plane, and Joseph is carrying both bags.
Scene Two: Having fun in Europe:
This scene begins with a collage of things that they do together, each very short video spirals in like an arriving newspaper page from an old newsreel. As the newspaper pages spin in the color changes from anitqued paper with slightly rages edges to full color and the picture fills the screen before another spins in over it, covering it. The music is full romantic strings, beginning with a rather processional type melody which gets slightly louder and each picture fills the screen. The music switches to romantic slow… [Read More]
Sideways is two hour tribute to drunk driving and friends who should all consider joining AA together. In it Jack, a voice-over advertisement actor, and Miles, the author of an unpublishable book, swing through California wine country. There they spend their time getting drunk and laid while trying to escape sordid reality -- Miles has just left a failed relationship with a controlling, belittling woman and Jack is about to enter one. The movie attempts to portray these two as realistic figures. The humor and pathos of the work is intended to emerge from the audience's sympathy and horror at their mid-life crises and their awkward attempts to make their ways through life. Miles in particular is supposed to have a certain every-man charm, as seen in the fact that he has an ordinary lifestyle with an ordinary job (as a middle school English teacher) and his relatively conservative approach to sexuality. Despite the fact that Miles and Jack are obviously meant to appeal to the audiences experience, they share a lifestyle which is far removed from middle America. The variety of lifestyles that exist in so-called "everyday life" --and especially everyday life in California -- are so wideranging that it is impossible to make any categorical statements about it. It is surely likely that people precisely like Jack and Miles exist somewhere, for their dialogue and antics seem quite human, if not quite normative. However, the screenwriter's perception of how normal people in America live is obvious a little skewed.
There are several ways in which Miles and Jack are atypical of normative Americans. Most Americans do not have the sort of money it requires to take a week off and go driving through wine country, staying at expensive resorts and drinking entire bottles of wine which may be over $100 a bottle (going…… [Read More]
The original Star Trek series contains a surprising amount of social commentary. The multiracial, multiethnic makeup of Starfleet itself is testimony to Gene Roddenberry's optimistic conception of the future of race (or at least interplanetary) relations. The United Federation of Planets is like a cosmic United Nations, comprised of races more different in appearance than any found on Earth. However, the hegemony of the United Federation of Planets does cause problems to non-member planets; and there is a distinct us-versus-them sentiment among Starfleet members. However, for the most part, the missions of the U.S.S. Enterprise generally promote freedom and justice throughout the known universe. Despite the stereotyping and sexism contained within Star Trek episodes, the crew of the U.S.S. Enterprise is surprisingly egalitarian. Moreover, the original show was produced and aired in the 1960s, during a time of heightened racial and social turmoil in the United States. This obviously influenced such shows as Episode # 76, "The Cloud Minders." Aired in February of 1969, "The Cloud Minders" contains commentary on class conflict, gender relations, environmentalism, and imperialism.
The show follows a standard formula for Star Trek episodes. Starfleet is authorized to fetch zenite from the planet Ardana. Zenite is the only known antidote for a deadly plant disease plaguing Federation member planet Marak II. The plague on Marak II threatens to wipe out the entire population, which of course warrants intervention. Ardana is obligated to comply with Starfleet's orders because as a member planet they must offer assistance to another federation member. Therefore, Starfleet acts like "big government," and frequently interferes with the sovereignty of Federation planets. Kirk and Spock believe "there must be some mistake" that the High Advisor asked them to beam down to Stratos, the main Ardana city, rather than directly to the zenite mines. Of course, Kirk feels his "emergency" is more important than this simple request from the Ardana High Advisor. This is the kind of government that frightens libertarians and any critics of "big…… [Read More]
movie starts with the year 1981. The location is San Francisco, California. The main character (protagonist), Chris Gardner played by Will Smith, invests his complete life savings in transportable bone-density scanners which he exhibits to doctors and sells as a convenient quantum leap over typical X-rays. Although he makes some sales, he is unable to make enough money to pay his bills. His already disillusioned and bitter wife, played by Thandi Newton, decides to leave him and their son for fear of being unable to be a single mother. He is left with his son and decides to continue selling the bone scanners downtown.
While taking a cab, at the end of the cab ride, he impresses Jay Twistle, played by Brian Howe, who happens to be a manager for Dean Witter, by quickly solving a Rubik's cube. Chris does not have enough to pay for the fare and decides to run from the cab driver. While the cab driver is in hot pursuit, Chris evades him in the subway and loses one of his scanners. He earns an internship stockbroker from Twistle after arriving at the office. Although he was arrested, had to paint his apartment, and was tired and dirty, he managed to impress the bosses.
The reason he had to paint his apartment was due to the landlord. The landlord offered Gardner more time in the apartment if he prepped it for the new tenants. His bad luck continued when his bank account was garnished by the IRS due to some previously owed income taxes. Additionally his son and he get evicted. He only had around thirty dollars to his name when he was evicted and ended up staying with his son in a subway bathroom.
Eventually he managed to get access to a shelter called the Glide Memorial United Methodist Church. He learned of this place from a tip from a worker at another shelter that only accepted women and children. Every afternoon after work, he had to race with his son to earn a place in line at the shelter. When in the subway, Gardner spots a crazy homeless man with the bone scanner he had lost earlier. The homeless person thought the bone scanner was a time machine.
Gardner managed to repair and sell the…… [Read More]
movie Maria Full Grace a 2004 joint Colombian-American drama film written directed Joshua Marston,
The principle concept demonstrated dramatically and quite effectively by first-time director Joshua Marston in his 2004 film Maria Full of Grace is that the drug world merely functions as one of the effects of the overall economic system that currently governs the planet. This system, of course, is predominantly capitalist and, as such, needs someone to capitalize on. In the film, that capitalist victim is a character named Maria, and a couple of her friends who are forced into positions in which they transport drugs to try to overthrow the ills of poverty. This concept represents the principle ideology in this film. Its conception of good and evil, then, hinges on the ills of this capitalist economic system that impoverishes and exploits people. The true villains are the ones who keep the system in place, while the heroes who attempt to pursue good are the ones who simply try to surmount those evils.
Viewed through this lens, then, Maria Full of Grace presents an unconventional morality and depictions of good and evil. Maria and her friends, who are transporting drugs from Columbia to New York, are law breakers -- conventional morality would render them as evil. Yet they do so simply to overcome issues of wanton poverty and the capitalist system that produces it, which makes their action inherently good and renders them heroines. This fact is alluded to in the following quotation, which denotes that in this film "The stereotypical image of a Columbian drug dealer, a handsome Al Pacino type in a slick suit with a machine gun, has been replaced with the terrified faces of women" (Dermansky, no date). The fact that these women, a reference to Maria and her friends, are described as "terrified " alludes to the fact that they certainly are not evil, they are scared, and they are scared because they are attempting to do some good and earn a little money for benign purposes.
The true evil in this film, then, is the capitalist forces that ultimately exploit drug runners such as Maria and her friends. Those forces are demonstrated…… [Read More]