Tag Archives: Independent Seminar

Beginners – Let’s Talk About Loneliness | Cynthia Ruan

Written and directed by Mike Mills, Beginners is a film that deals a lot with loneliness. After his mother’s death, Oliver (Ewan McGregor)’s father, Hal (Christopher Plummer) is diagnosed with stage-four cancer. At the age of 75, he also comes out of the closet and starts living the time of his life. After Hal has passed away, Oliver becomes depressed until he meets a French actress, Anna. They try to make their relationship work while both struggling with issues of their own.11_09_Beginners_event.jpg

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Photo journal – Ria

This week I continued with my film along with work on my annotated bibliography. Most of the information is the same from my first semester independent project but there are many pictures I would need to cite. The film process is moving along smoothly so I decided to use this post as an opportunity to show some photos that will be in the video.

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How I Met Your Mother – Defying “The One” | Cynthia

As you can see, this week’s blog is going to be more of a tangent. I procrastinated a little too much last week so I have to do two blogs this week and I just don’t have the time or energy to write two film reviews back to back. (Learn from my mistakes people) I’m currently binge-watching How I Met Your Mother for probably the tenth time around and I thought it would be interesting to share some of my thoughts on the show. I’ve been writing about some pretty sad and heavy films so it’s nice to have a change of direction and talk about the theme of love in one of my all-time favorite comedy.

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Blue is the Warmest Color – Where’s the Line? – Cynthia

The first time I watched Blue is the Warmest Color by Abdellatif Kechiche, I was barely sixteen. The legendary, almost pornographic 10-minute lesbian sex scene shocked me to the core. Kechiche took his dedication to realism to a level that I never knew films could go. Continue reading

Manhattan – A Love Letter to NYC | Cynthia Ruan

I watched Manhattan by Woody Allen for my English class a while back, and I thought I would write about it this week.

The film centers around a television writer Isaac Davis (Woody Allen) and his relationships with three women: his ex-wife, Jill ((Meryl Streep), who leaves him for another woman, a high school girl, Tracey (Mariel Hemingway), whom he at first dismisses but later realizes to be the love of his life, and Mary (Diane Keeton), a brainy, sophisticated writer who eventually leaves him for his best friend.

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Film process

These past few weeks I started making my film and I am in the process still. I put the content into the imovie storyboard and am now formatting it. This is the first step to the film production. I was planning on putting the video together slowly bit by bit and while I am still planning on doing that, I found that it was helpful to at least plan out the major scenes of the film. This way I know what I am working towards next in the film. The film making part itself is taking longer than expected because it is a lot more technical than I thought it would be. There cannot be any gaps in the film, especially my type  of film. In videos dense with history and information it is hard enough to keep viewers attention, if the film is not clearly planned through and choppy it is even harder. This is currently my fear and biggest struggle in making. I need to save a lot of time at the end for editing which is why this past week has been busier. Continue reading

La La Land-Appreciating its Simplicity | Cynthia Ruan

I decided to write about La La Land by Damien Chazelle this week. It is a L.A. love story between a jazz musician, Sebastian (Ryan Gosling) and an aspiring young actress, Mia (Emma Stone). The brilliant, Oscar-winning (YAY) Chazelle delivered the story in the form of a musical. It’s very nostalgic; Chazelle pays tribute to many classic ninetieth musicals such as Singin’ in the Rain and An American in Paris, but the story itself is modern and Chazelle definitely made it into his own style.

I have to say that I’m truly surprised by how much I’m in love with this film. I’m not a fan of musicals and am pretty cynical when it comes to romantic dramas, especially ones like this where everything is just so over-the-top romanticized. So it may seem like besides Ryan Gosling’s beautiful face, there shouldn’t be any reason for me to like this film at all. But in the midst of all the dancing and singing and floating in the planetarium, La La Land really touched me, evidenced by my crying hysterically for the both times I watched it in the theater and the many times on my laptop.mv5bzduynzuymwmtyjc2zc00yjixlthlodktyjrmzmizmzllotqxl2ltywdlxkeyxkfqcgdeqxvynjawmdu5mtu-_v1_sy1000_sx1000_al_

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Blue Valentine – Why Isn’t Love Enough? | Cynthia Ruan

For my project, I’ll be writing reviews on films with the broad theme of love. I’ll focus more on the analysis of characters and storylines instead of the technicality of filmmaking since it’s not my area of expertise.

In light of Valentine’s Day, I watched Blue Valentine by Dereck Cianfrance this week, and here’s my complete review on the movie.

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