readingnotes - Ch 7-12 Reading Notes Chapter 7 Roots of the...

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Ch. 7 -12 Reading Notes Chapter 7 Roots of the American Comedy tradition: Early 19 th Century conservative Southern gentlemen first writing/publishing of humor in America. Their aim was to ridicule common men and women of South/West US. Comic masked political/social aggression. The common folk took pride in their unflattering portraits. Silent comedy subverting social control: Feelings of hostility/resentment towards authority played out on screen satire of social control like cops, schools, marriages, middle-class manners, and all fundamental institution of the social order made to look as foolish and inane as the lowlife characters. Mack Sennett and Keystone: Sennett worked at Biograph as an actor and comedy director until 1912 when he left to become producer of his own comedy studio, Keystone. The Golden Age of American Movie Comedy – begins with Sennett at Keystone, or even begun with the movies themselves. Ridicules the poor, the powerful, romance. Sennett said he imitated slapstick from the Frenchmen. Sennett learned style from D.W. Griffith, how to quicken the pace of movie through cutting shots back and forth from action. Cameraman would crank slowly to create a blur of frantic action. Distributed through Mutual and then part of the Triangle Organization. Allowed stars to direct and write, to improvise their own films, but retained final approval. In 1917 he relinquished the
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