Sunset Boulevard: Film Analysis
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Sunset Boulevard Explained: The Hollywood Nightmare
Joe takes action to solve his problems: When he needs money to make his car payments, he immediately hustles to raise the it; when the finance men chase him, he races up Sunset Blvd. She begs Joe to work with her on it, and he decides to sneak out on Norma to write the story with her. When Norma discovers that Joe is writing a script with Betty, she decides to break up the partnership. There are only so many ways Joe can get a large amount of cash quickly enough to keep his car from being repossessed, stay in town, and keep himself in the Hollywood game.
Having tried every way she knows to achieve her comeback—and failing, Norma attempts to hold onto the man who makes her feel loved. When this too fails, she succumbs to her ego and destroys him. Before Joe is murdered, he finds the strength and integrity to send Betty off to marry Artie for her own good; leaves Norma and returns the expensive clothes and jewelry with which she trapped him; decides to go back to Ohio where he can at least earn an honest living. The objective characters envision how Joe or themselves can make it in Hollywood. Joe envisions milking Norma for five hundred a week, going back to writing his own stories, and eventually selling them to producers.
She sees the same path for Joe. So does he for a while. The objective characters are motivated by how they see themselves. Joe sees himself as a talented writer having a dry spell. Cecil B. MAX: [. You must understand I discovered her when she was eighteen. I made her a star. I cannot let her be destroyed. MAX: It was I who asked to come back, humiliating as it may seem. I could have gone on with my career, only I found everything unendurable after she divorced me.
You see, I was her first husband. What would they [ the media] do to Norma? Forgotten star a slayer. I kind of hoped to get in on this deal. JOE: Come on where? Back to a story that may sell and very possibly will not? A long-term contract with no options. MAX: Madame is the greatest star of them all. And being a star, Norma forbids Joe to leave her and shoots him. An example of how the objective characters use projection to solve the story problem is illustrated in the minor character of Cecil B. DeMille: He allows Norma to continue to believe the calls from the studio were because he loved her script and wants to direct her in another picture.
He hopes his lie will allow Norma to live on the happy memories of her stardom indefinitely. The objective characters focus on their abilities to achieve success in Hollywood. Norma focuses exclusively on her acting talent and loses touch with reality. Artie Green travels to Arizona as an assistant director to become a full-fledged director, and unwittingly gives Betty the chance to fall in love with Joe.
Norma, depressed by obscurity, longs to be a star again. Max loves Norma so much he lets her treat him like a servant, supporting her fantasy for so long that she feels justified to enslave Joe, and arrive on the Paramount lot as if she were a queen. Max has stopped using his senses when it come to Norma. He pretends not to hear or see anything that will embarrass or upset her. His denial of everything he senses prevents her from knowing the truth and dealing with it. Norma Desmond, at one time a famous star of silent films, lives in a luxurious Hollywood mansion on Sunset Boulevard attended to only by Max Von Mayerling, once her director now her servant.
She employs Joe Gillis, a disillusioned young writer, to work on the script with which she hopes to make a comeback, even though Cecil B. DeMille has turned it down. He tries to escape but she attempts suicide and he returns. He sneaks out at night to write his own script with a girl he is in love with. When he eventually tells Norma the truth about her own fantasies, she shoots him. The shock tips the balance in her mind and she walks downstairs to be arrested, believing the cameras and crowds are to welcome her return to the screen. Sadoul, p. The objective characters are all struggling to get or keep their respective piece of the movie business.
Norma schemes to return to the screen as the star she once was. Joe tries to sell his story ideas so he can get studio work. Artie Green struggles in his apprenticeship as a assistant director. Producer Sheldrake searches for his next hit movie so he can keep his job and afford his fabulous home. Joe finds himself living in a one-room apartment, behind in his rent, and on the verge of losing his car. His situation drives him to accept a rewrite job from Norma Desmond against his better judgment. He finds himself virtually her prisoner, marooned without a car, money, or a place of his own.
He becomes her lover and kept man. BETTY: [. Not lately. Joe, recently murdered and floating in a swimming pool, wants everyone to know the chain of events leading up to his death. Things were tough at the moment. Further, when he was alive, his concern was to avoid his past life as a lowly newspaper man. James Joyce? Although he tries to turn his luck around, Joe is fated to turn into that particular driveway where Norma is in need of a writer for her script. Joe, floating in his watery grave, acknowledges that twisted bit of fate.
He always wanted a pool. Well, in the end, he got himself a pool. In fact everything he does speeds him along the path to becoming another casualty of Hollywood. He might have chalked the whole experience up for what it was, patted himself on the back for trying, and gone back to Ohio before it was too late. Joe focuses on keeping Norma happy, and protecting the wholesome Artie and Betty from the truth about his unsavory lifestyle.
Ready to give him up for me. Maybe I could get away with it. Away from Norma. Maybe I could wipe the whole nasty mess right out of my life. Unfortunately, these efforts are only temporary and the story ends in failure. Joe judges his progress by how things are going in his life. In front of him, on a straight chair, is a portable typewriter. Thomas, p. Joe Gillis, a scriptwriter desperate to prevent his car from being repossessed, accepts a rewrite job from Norma Desmond for some quick cash.
He allows her to buy him expensive clothes and jewelry, and install him in her mansion. His first effort to leave her fails when she attempts suicide. As Norma becomes more possessive of him, Joe secretly writes his own script with Betty, a young script reader. He hopes the script will make him financially independent of Norma, but along the way he falls in love with Betty. Norma discovers his secret and harasses Betty. As he exits the house Norma shoots him, and he lands dead in her swimming pool.
He ducks into the driveway of a decaying mansion belonging to Norma Desmond. The only movies she watches are silent ones starring her younger self. More than anything she wants to be a star again. So help me! These recollections fill her with happiness and fuel her enormous ego. How do you like that? His greatest successes. He wants to belittle me. Norma represents falsehood: She misconstrues the phone calls from Paramount to mean that DeMille intends to direct her script, starring her.
However, the studio just wants to rent her vintage car. When DeMille reinforces her false belief, Norma locks onto it with a vengeance, working herself into a frenzy as she gets ready to face the cameras at age fifty. Her insecurity causes her to demand constant attention from Joe, who feels more uncomfortable with her than ever. Getting herself ready for a picture. What happens when she finds out? MAX: She never will.
That is my job. For one moment Norma acknowledges the truth about her age and her fears. NORMA: [. Look at my hands, look at my face, look under my eyes. I got myself a revolver. Later, Joe tells her the truth about her visit with DeMille. The studio wanted to rent your car. None of us had the heart. Norma refuses to accept the true meaning of this. I have to get ready for my scene. Where am I? MAX: This is the staircase of the palace. So, let us look at the characteristics of visual in Sunset Boulevard. Sunset Boulevard uses a lot of high-contrast lighting which also known as low key lighting, for example, in Norma's house, the lighting are low key and because of this lighting, it creates dark shadows which is also one of the characteristic of film noir.
Besides the lighting and shadow, the setting of the film is also one of the characteristic of film noir. The living room where Norma is dancing to entertain Joe, bedroom of Norma and Joe, ballroom where Norma is dancing with Joe during New Year Eve and the place where Norma write her script, all of these space are dimly-lit interiors and very congested. The lighting and the setting is to show the character is suffocating in their life. Next is the characteristic of theme in Sunset Boulevard. In this film we find out there has hard-boiled anti-hero versus femme fatale. The male protagonist, Joe, lie to Norma in order to get a job when she ask him to stay and help her edit the script. Joe lies about he is pretty expensive and very busy with his assignment but actually he is very free and desperate for money.
Besides, his masculinity had been threatened. That is because he has no money and he wants his car back so that he decides to help Norma edit her script and enjoy everything that Norma gives him. He also chooses the expensive material of his coats and takes money from Norma to buy cigarette. All of this had shown that he lost his masculinity. After that he also lost his freedom and control by Norma. This show in the scene when Norma asks him to clean the ashtray, asks him not to eat chewing gum and Norma also decides the material of his coats for him.
Lastly, he made a moral decision which is he choose to leave both women, Norma and Betty. Femme fatale in this film is Norma Desmond. She is a manipulative woman. She would not tell you directly if she wants something from you. Joe realizes that his things all had brought toward the mansion on the next morning and this is being ordered by Norma herself because she wants Joe to stay and help her edit the script. She is also very arrogant and ambitious. When Joe tell her she is appear too much in the scene and wants to remove her from one scene, she starts argue with Joe that everyone wants to see her and ask him put back the scene.
Every day she receives many letters from her fan and she say that her fans wants her photograph but actually the letters is written by Max. Her mansion is crowded with her pictures and there has a very huge portrait at her living room. Introduction to Film Third Edition , pp Neale, S. Genre and Hollywood. New York. Faison, S. Retrieved from. A Element of Film Noir. Retrieve from. Naremore, J. More Than Night : Film Noir and its contexts.
PBworks Visual Style. Email This BlogThis! Share to Twitter Share to Facebook. Joe Yan 7 April at Unknown 13 May at Grrrrlscanrocktoo 2 December at Unknown 29 January at Marlena 9 April at Newer Post Home. Subscribe to: Post Comments Atom. Blogger templates. Popular Posts. Film Analysis of Sunset Boulevard. This story set in '50s Hollywood and Characteristics of Film Noir. Visual Style In film noir always using low-key lighting and associated with the dramatic shadow patterning.Mulholland Dr. She Individualism In Lino Jungs The Joy Luck Club twelve pictures with Cecil B. The first international production of Aida ran Sunset Boulevard: Film Analysis ScheveningenNetherlands. Wilder contacted Sobibor Concentration Camp Essay Negri by telephone, but had a difficult time understanding her heavy Polish accent. Joe Gillis's apartment is in the Alto Summary Of Fallen Angels, a real apartment block in Parenting Styles In Into The Wild Hollywood that was often populated by struggling Individualism In Lino Jungs The Joy Luck Club. Best Scoring of a Dramatic or Comedy Picture.