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Our discussion for this Module focuses on auteurism, the idea that a single person (or group) has authorship over the production of a film. In Classic Hollywood, auteurism is almost exclusively associated with male directors. We turn our attention to the only female director working in 1950s Hollywood: Ida Lupino. What distinguishes her authorial style?
For your Initial Discussion Post due by Sunday 10/16 at 11:59pm, please respond to the following prompt below in a post of at least 300 words. You do not have to address every detail of the prompt, but your post should contribute to the discussion and not merely repeat what has already been posted by your classmates. While I encourage you to offer your personal views of the films in this Module, please refrain from unproductive summaries of story or plot and/or why a film is “good” or “bad.” Assume that everyone in the discussion group has completed the viewing assignment. I suggest that you publish your post in Word first and assume that something may go wrong in Canvas when you hit ‘Post Reply.’
For your Response Post to one classmate due by Sunday 10/16 at 11:59pm, expand the discussion by replying in 75 words or more to at least one classmate’s post. Responses may include describing your own insight related to the post, providing additional information from assigned or outside content, disagreeing respectfully by describing your own interpretation, proposing a new idea, or asking a question. I cannot give full points to posts that merely “like” another post; the response post must demonstrate substantial effort.
N ADDITION TO WRITING MY POST: (I WILL ADD A CLASSMATE’S POST HERE SO YOU CAN RESPOND BACK) FOR THE RESPONSE POST. THIS IS MY CLASSMATE’S DISCUSSION POST. (PLEASE RESPOND TO HER POST BY USING THE PROFFORS INSTRUCTIONS) CLASSMATE’S POST. (PLEASE RESPOND TO THEIR POST BY USING THE PROFFORS INSTRUCTIONS)
Ethan’s Post: The scene I chose to analyze happens at 31:17 in the film. I chose this scene because it stands out from many of the other scenes. This scene is taken from a low angle whereas many of the scenes in the movie are from chest height or head height. This scene is also significant in terms of the story because Phyllis says that she would want to remain as strangers to Harrison. This was his cue to leave her, but he continues to pursue her and completely changes his life for the worse because of his actions after this scene. The dialogue in this scene is more significant than the actual shot. However, the shot does show the viewer that Phyllis is the one with the power. She looks down on Harrison and foreshadows that she will have some sort of control over him.
Response Post EXAMPLE: Hey Tiffany,
I agree with you that the introduction to the movie was a bit jarring at first. The beginning of the movie is certainly light-hearted in terms of the story and music. The scene itself is also very bright, which you pointed out. This is appropriate since the wife is very hopeful that they will get their child from Mr. Jordan. The scene you chose is very interesting to watch again after knowing that the husband has another family. By rewatching this scene, you can really see that Harrison looks a bit nervous like he is hiding something.
In The Bigamist, I noticed that Lupino chooses to change camera angles very frequently within scenes. When there are scenes with two people talking, the camera cuts between both people’s faces often. Shots in the movie also tend to be at either chest height or head height. The characters are very often centered on the screen and take up a large portion of the screen space. A trope I see repeated throughout the film is how the main character, Harrison, consistently picks the wrong choices and digs himself into a deeper hole with each choice he makes.
I think what designates a filmmaker as an auteur is consistency with their shots. If someone can watch a movie and pick out the patterns the scenes follow and link it to a person, then the movie was created by an auteur. The shots do not have to be beautiful, but I believe that they have to be structured for the creator to be called an auteur.
Your analyses should refer to course materials and reflect on how film style and history function. A post that earns full points will not merely agree with course materials but will visually illustrate ideas in the reading. Do not forget to include embedded media (YouTube clip or images) that visualizes the example(s) in your post. Please make sure that you read all of the posts in your discussion group before posting. I cannot give full points to posts that duplicate examples or YouTube clips. Please limit your posts to no more than 400 words and 1-2 examples to give others a chance to write about key scenes/shots. I suggest that you resize your screenshots and images to ‘Large’ in the ‘Image Options.’ The ‘Image Options’ tag appears above or below an image when you click on it while editing in the Rich Content Editor. Please limit your posts to no more than 400 words and 1-2 examples to give others a chance to write about key scenes/shots. I suggest that you resize your screenshots and images to ‘Large’ in the ‘Image Options.’ The ‘Image Options’ tag appears above or below an image when you click on it while editing in the Rich Content Editor.
As you watch and/or review The Bigamist, take notes on formal and thematic patterns. Are certain kinds of shots or editing patterns repeated? What about how Lupino frames characters or objects in the frame? Are there certain concepts, themes, or tropes that you see repeated throughout the film? Please choose one shot/scene from The Bigamist and embed a screenshot(s) or YouTube clip into your post. Let the class know the significance of this scene or shot in relation to locating Lupino as an auteur. You may also disagree that she is an auteur, but please keep the conversation in line with what Lewis outlines in the reading. A director need not have an overwhelming stylistic presence in order to be considered an auteur (e.g. Hawks, Wilder). Sometimes other narrative elements emerge. If you are feeling ambitious, watch another film by Lupino or select clips from YouTube or Vimeo of other Lupino films for comparison. What do you think designates a filmmaker as an auteur?
To view the grading rubric for this discussion, click on the “more options” icon (3 vertical dots at the top) and then select “show rubric”.a red arrow pointing to 3 vertical dots
Mobile App users: Click Grades, then click into the Discussion. The rubric can then be found on the Grades tab.
Aim for excellence! These are the criteria for what comprises an “Excellent” rating for a discussion post:
Addresses each part of the discussion prompt(s).
Postings demonstrate reflective and critical thinking, not just recitation of information from textbook.
Makes connections to previous or current course content or to real-life situations.
Contains insightful and thoughtful ideas, connections, or applications.
Makes reference to a textbook or other sources when required.
Well-written and free of spelling and grammatical errors.
Includes well-written, thoughtful response(s) to classmates.
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