Updated on October 29, 2007, 1:10 AM - Written by Tim Buttner
A good policy for getting by in this world is isolationism and to be deaf and dumb. Association only brings trouble, especially if talking about the activities of those associates can lead to more trouble. One never should go looking for trouble, after all and that's the policy lived by Rick Blaine in Casablanca and Terry Malloy in On the Waterfront. The path to redemption for both Rick and Terry come through several factors.
One factor is a McGuffin like device, i.e. the Letters of Transit for Rick and the coat of Joey Doyle's for Terry. The Letters of Transit put Rick in a position of power once they fall into his possession, and several characters put themselves in front of him asking for him to give them the Letters, included a former love, Ilsa. The coat that goes from Joey Doyle, to Timothy J. Dugan, and finally Terry is very similar to the boots from All Quiet On the Western Front. Unlike the boots though, the jacket doesn't completely foreshadow impeding death, even if two of the characters that possess it meet such a fate, but instead their willingness to speak out against Johnny Friendly and his organization.
Another factor is the assistance from the women in their lives to bring them closer to redemption. For Rick, Ilsa's return in his life reminds him of time in his life when he once cared for something other than himself. Seeing her love for her husband, and his devotion to his cause is a reawakening to Rick that he too once believed in something, something worth fighting for. Terry falls in love with Joey's sister, Edie, and through her realizes the good fight for better work conditions for longshoremen. He grows to learn that he's always taken the dive and never stood up for himself.
Redemption in both these movies portray important messages to the audience that the filmmakers wished to share. In Casablanca it was to symbolize of how isolationism was not the best policy for the U.S....
Updated on October 14, 2007, 11:44 PM - Written by Tim Buttner
Within some movies there are lines that sum up so much of what is going on within the story. They are a symbolic way for the audience to understand that a change is taking place through the use of a metaphor, bringing on a level of sophistication to the way that the story is told. This is done with the two movies Scarface from 1932 and It Happened One Night the Best Picture Academy Award Winner of 1934.
Both these lines that make up a metaphor for the movie follow a progression through their respective movies, where each choice the main characters make is effected or has an effect on the metaphor. In Scarface Antonio "Tony" Camonte allows "The World is Yours" to inspire him to reach out and pursue what he doesn't have, giving him ambition, soon it becomes the sign of his decadence where he strives to gain what he cannot, and finally it is the mocking force that we can never gain absolute control and possession of all things. The metaphor follows his journey.
Meanwhile in It Happened One Night, the metaphor is a sign of the divide that is between the two central characters. Instead of it being the inspiration, the symbol of decadence, and the overpowering strength of the natural universe, it is a symbolic hurdle for the characters to overcome. Ellie Andrews has to get over the "Wall of Jericho" to discover true love lies not in wealth, but with the one who makes you happy. Peter Warne has to come to realize that these barriers can be broken and the greatest story for him is his own life with this girl who fits right into his worldview. The "Wall" becomes the symbol of when it is gone, no more will they be divided, but together one. Also it holds a small sexual connotation.
These methods for conveying points to the audience were better than coming right out and saying it to the audience, as it allowed for more artistic interpretations and more craft in telling...