Archive for Hudsucker Proxy

Midterm Ch. 2 The Significance of Film Form (Nak)

Posted in Actuality, Emulation, film, Forensics, Sampling, Self-Aware Computing, Semiotic Hacking, Simulation with tags , , , , on September 20, 2008 by knocknak

One of my favorite movies of all time, Hudsucker Proxy has it all when it comes to forms in the film. According to Film Art an introduction, there are artworks in movies that “cues” us into something more dramatic or creates depth in the film. In Hudsucker’s example, there was a repetition in portraying a circle in the movie (heavy emphasis might I add). This circle in a way represented the idea of karma, what goes around comes around, and the idea of perfection. This circle was seen towards the beginning of the movie, and as the movie proceeded, the circle even became part of the story. So when we look at the film in Hudsucker Proxy, there’s a definite use of artworks in its film. Not only did the circle in the movie come to serve as a metaphor, it was used as a cue to create a bigger impact in the story.

Our silly main character Norville emphasized in the story that he had the greatest plan of all time. He finally shows his plan to the people at the toy company and this plan he spoke of was just a piece of paper with a circle drawn onto it.

By now we are suppose to laugh at this point, because of all the things that Norville could have planned for (he also said that this plan took him many many years) was a circle! Talk about originality! But as the story proceeds, we come to find out that this circle, was the beginning of manufacturing a new toy called, hoola-hoop!

Great use of artkwork and form there, Norville! Moving on, Hudsucker Proxy made a interesting use out of Formal Expectations. In the beginning of the film we see Norville, attempting to suicide by jumping out of the toy company.  Then movies flashes back into the past and the story starts from there. So from the very beginning, audience foreshadows that Norville will die in the end. If Norville did, this movie would’ve been like the example shown in the textbook, ABC. But like I said, ths movie is awesome so it was something like this: ABZ – that’s how unexpected it got towards the end.

Towards the end of the movie when Norville jumps off the building, the audience begins to feel sad by this time around. But, a miracle happens where the time stops and Norville floats in midair and lands on the ground safely representing having second chances in the movie. This throws off the audience because there never has been any sort of magic happening in the movie. But because of this dramatic twist in the movie, it creates curiosity to the audience. Why did the director decide to do that? What just happened? Why? But in the case of Hudsucker Proxy, due to its initial use of crazy chances in the film, this miracle seems to work well with the movie.

Conventions are often used in films so that they can connect with the audiences well and give the illusion that it is really “happening”. In Hudsucker Proxy, convention is used extremely well by incorporating a toy company with the story of a young businessman. Despite the use of the miracle, seeing characters develop as the movie proceeds, to seeing various use of business aspect embeded in the film, the convention enables the story of Norville and chance to tie in with each other and it enables the audience to connect to the film as well. Because it feels real. The zaniness and the exaggeration created in the movie made it into an extraordinary comedic film.

Let’s compare two films now. One would be Hudsucker Proxy, and the other would be Midnight Meat Train which I saw at the dollar movie theatre a few weeks ago. Form and feelings are used heavily in the films to add in the personal conventions to the audience. Just as the textbook has stated, when we watch comedy such as Hudsucker Proxy, we laugh when we see Norville get hurt over silly things – accidently getting his foot stuck on the garbage can, setting it on fire, and screaming bewilderly all the place. When we see the main character in the midnight meat train watching people getting killed by an insane murderer, the whole mood is changed. We freak out, and when we listen to the music in the film, it can really get us going.

While convention was used to tie with the audience in Hudsucker Proxy well, Midnight Meat Train had the similar effect with its audience the climax of the film really threw people off. Why is that? Because Midnight Meat Train lacked development for their latter part of the film. The film succeeded in portraying the meanings, artwork in photography, and the suspense really going, but in the end finding out that the enemy was a blood thirty alien sort of thing really threw off.

Meanings in the film: taking chances, having the courage to do something from Midnight Meat Train, to the ideas of having second chances and doing good deeds for others, all these planning are all there execpt one movie works and the other does not. With all the systems integrating to create a film, they all need to be balanced and fit into the “norms” of the society in order for it to connect with the audience and create form.