L:Freire

L:Freire

Luis Freire is a Rutgers University alumnus. Luis mentors composition on an academic level as a prerequisite to advanced study, career objective, or professional development.

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Latest Articles

Latest Topics

3

The Family That Performs Together

Does being part of an acting family detract from individual performance? Or does the family dynamic contribute to the development of the character in ways not otherwise possible? Is the acting a product of the individual drawing from early formative experience or from a constant effort to avoid it and seek a unique path to stardom? Consider the dilemma or the benefit using famous Hollywood families such as Martin Sheen, Drew Barrymore, Kirk Douglas, Henry Fonda, and Julia Roberts.

  • Breaking away from the Hollywood-centric theme of this suggestion could produce some interesting results, such as: Armendáriz-Marín (Mexican), Asher (British), Banai (Israeli), Depardieu (French), Fox-Richardson-Redgraves (British), Gleeson (Irish), just to name a few.Good topic suggestion anyway. – Amyus 2 months ago
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  • In the past, a baker's son would become a baker, and a candlestick maker's offspring would be stuck with waxing the wick. The same with actors. When you grow up in a certain world, you learn the vocabulary and the ins and outs. You also get the connections. And the populace's embrace. Why else would Clint Eastwood's son be acting and Stallone's kids be models? Name recognition. – brandonjudell 2 months ago
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  • Don't forget about the Von Trapp family (the real ones). I find them a good fit for this topic. They were somewhat forced to hone their singing talent so they could have the financial means to live through an economic collapse and escape Nazi Europe, and those stakes arguably followed the whole family throughout their American musical career. Maria's eldest biological daughter Rosmarie actually had a nervous breakdown once, partially because Maria did not approve of her leaving the group. I'd love to see the Von Trapps included here. – Stephanie M. 1 month ago
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5

Props That Dominate The Screen

Why do films with a car as the main attraction appeal to the audience as much as films with human actors? How does screenings such as Herbie, Christine, Knight Rider, or Smokey and the Bandit compare to established portrayals such as Star Wars, Star Trek, or Terminator in that cinematic rendition? Consider the same effect that animals have on the audience; Lassie, Grizzly Adams, and Mister Ed.

  • Part of this could be the discussion of iconography such as the Star Trek uniform symbol or any of the superhero symbols. I think key props may do the same job psychologically that iconography in real life does. – SaraiMW 2 months ago
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  • Ah, interesting! Consider delving into how these inanimate characters or animals are often humanized to connect with the audience. – Stephanie M. 1 month ago
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Comedy: Internal Energy or External Motivation

John Belushi was a comedic talent above and beyond the ever constant flow of aspiring young actors. His antics were delivered with masterful ability in both television and film. His contribution to comedy, acting, and singing set the image for future actors to emulate. So, is it safe to say that Chris Farley was merely following the mold set by others or that he added his own specific brand of skill to a familiar venue? Consider the factors that play into developing the unique performer, while simultaneously pointing out the distinctive traits of the personality. Does comedic talent necessitate a lesser or more pronounced counterpart, much like Laurel and Hardy in order to cultivate the creative juices? How much of an effect does audience have on delivery and captivating tension? Are props, musical score, setting, and dialogue vital to the production or simple accessories of the process? Does the climactic spectacle require a "Who’s on first?" dialogue as the one coined by Abbott and Costello, or is it merely the chemistry between the characters?

  • I feel like you are in need of a stupid and futile gesture. – nolarmade69 2 months ago
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The Acting Dilemma: Limited Resource or Bountiful Influence

Does physical presence primarily carry the screen character, or does the dialogue and script or director and cast influence the dramatic effect behind entertainment? In the process of this consideration, explore classic one-liners instituted by Mae West burlesque sketches in film and song. Among the other possible directions to elaborate, television greats such Jackie Gleason of The Honeymooners fame and his nonstop banter against his wife, his neighbor, and the slew of supporting roles displayed in a variety of episodes. This point can be expanded to other genres or periods such as: the Clint Eastwood 1970s role of Dirty Harry or the snide remarks of Arnold Schwarzenegger in the Terminator series.

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    John Lennon: Singular Talent Or Group Dynamic

    Was John Lennon a multi-talented individual or did his success arise from a mixture of personal and professional acquaintances, geographical destinations, life experiences, or generational appetite? Examine the events leading to his early struggles as a fledgling art student, to the final years of masterful composing in order to isolate and understand the potent recipe for musical ascendancy.

    • Interesting idea. I lean toward Lennon being a singular talent. He obviously benefited from his band mates in the '60s, but his solo material subsequently is quite wonderful. I think you could make a compelling argument for either side of this issue. – John Wilson 10 months ago
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    • Maybe worth considering: It seems like he had most of his eccentricities and strange musical proclivities ironed out by the Lennon-McCarntey song writing machine and producer GeorgeMartin. – DeanJr 9 months ago
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    The Early Formation Of The Child Performer

    Modern performances rely on young actors amid outlandish worlds of fantasy and fable. It is often conveyed through technological devices such as computer graphics or scale mock-ups. But years ago, child performers had only their voice, their dancing feet, their counterpart, and a reliable stream of antics to deliver entertainment to audiences. In the tradition of Shirley Temple and Little Rascals, show how much or how little technological advancement in screenplay has impacted the burgeoning and maturing actor into a unique form or into a rambunctious version of the original model. By all means, incorporate relevant patterns of the genre by configuring actors such as Mickey Rooney (who started in silent film) into the prose, or the Brooke Shields foray into fashion, modeling, and advertising.

    • Relevant article: https://the-artifice.com/secret-life-of-shirley-temple/ – Misagh 10 months ago
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    • An interesting suggestion for an article! There's a great history of cinema to draw upon indeed, but might I also suggest widening the subject to include a look at young actors/actresses' development outside of Hollywood? – Amyus 10 months ago
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    • A lovely topic with plenty of research to draw from. I'd be especially interested in the writer's take on Shirley Temple. Both my grandmas had some of her movies, so I watched her as a kid. I liked her, but even when I was little I felt her acting was overdone and whiny. I wonder now if that was encouraged because of a lack of technology, or if today's child stars have similar problems. (Personally, I've seen some really good ones and some that can't act to save their little lives). – Stephanie M. 10 months ago
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    The Impact of Effects on Performance

    The early silent films of Charlie Chaplin were masterpieces of entertainment. Yet, there was little to no soundtrack nor color. Even before that, audiences had to rely primarily on imagination in order to bring to life the voice-based scripts of radio. Since those initial attempts at conveying plot, a riveting account of history can be equally transformed by song and choreography, such as in Evita (1996) starring Madonna. For this matter, explore the requirement of prop and effect in adding to the effectiveness or detracting from the quality of film or television.

    • Now this could make for a fascinating article indeed! Might I also suggest including other silent greats such as Buster Keaton, Harold Lloyd and similar? It would be also be worth mentioning the role that the accompanying pianist had in helping to create mood for these early cinematic audiences/viewers. With regard to voice based scripts on radio, I once worked with a chap who gave me a fascinating insight into some of the everyday 'found' objects that were used to add audio effects. I'll never look at a sink plunger in the same way again! The Foley artist is a valued and essential part of film making these days, especially when, in some instances, up to 90% of dialogue and sounds effects are recreated after the shoot has actually finished. Having done ADR (Additional Dialogue Recording) myself I can certainly attest to how tough it can be for the actor to recreate the mood and emotion, sometimes months later, of the original performance. Props can be a boon to any performer, if used well, but they can also be a right pain in the backside if poorly maintained and will detract from a performance. Every actor has his or her horror stories about props that seem to take on a life of their own. Thumbs up from me and good luck to he or she who takes on this subject. – Amyus 10 months ago
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    Michael Douglas: Keeping the Audience Reeling

    The actor Michael Douglas graduated from University of California at Santa Barbara with a degree in Drama. The real work began after an impressive portfolio of film and television roles: The Streets of San Francisco, The China Syndrome, Romancing the Stone, Fatal Attraction, Basic Instinct, Black Rain, The American President, Wall Street, and The War of the Roses. He has played: detective, banker, lawyer, reporter; in both an acting capacity and as director. As if that wasn’t enough to qualify on your own merits, he is the son of famed Hollywood thespian, Kirk Douglas. But, success has no limits and Michael Douglas is proof that the territory of theater is his dominion. It is no surprise then that the University of St. Andrews in Scotland bestowed upon him an honorary Doctor of Letters degree in 2006. With a vibrant history of contribution to the arts, one must wonder–what was the allure that kept audiences flocking to the theaters and Hollywood studios beckoning with scripts? One avenue to explore could be the pressure the character has to deal with in front of the camera; crime, career, colleagues, addiction, moderation, or marriage. Who holds the key to a great performance: the scriptwriter, the actor, the circumstance, or the foil? In what way does Douglas figure against seasoned counterparts, gender-ethnic based peers, or immediate audience? Is it a matter of how willing and able the actor is to crossing boundaries (cultural, professional, geographical, personal, ideological) for the sake of the film industry, even if merely for the art? Consider this common thread of crossing material and metaphysical boundaries in the analysis.

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    Latest Comments

    L:Freire

    I feel that much can be done to boil the senses with very little dialogue or circumstance. There are two monolithic works that can attest to this. The first is the film Jaws based on the Peter Benchley 1974 novel. The majority of the ocean sequences are only loosely implying the presence of a shark yet the sheer atrocity of what’s to follow is exacerbated by music score, and colored water and plenty of bubbles. The second is William Peter Blatty’s 1971 novel The Exorcist. Blatty has been documented as vehemently denying that he intended to convey the story as a tale of horror. The film adaption went on to become the greatest cinematic rendition of terror ever set to celluloid; but, where is the fiend? Blatty was studying at Georgetown University when he was inspired by the true story of a documented case of exorcism. A reading of the pages within the novel is a harrowing experience to say the least and disturbing in precisely the way set forth in your article.

    Fear in Fiction: The good, the bad, and the Downright Scary
    L:Freire

    Definitely see your point of view that every civilization has an established body of classics and that subtexts form their own particular brand of exclusivity and intrinsic importance in the interim. Like many people, I was exposed to the Greek epics and the British poets at a time when I was indifferent to their universal themes. Odd as it may seem, I find myself seeking guidance and purpose within those same pages and chapters as an adult.

    The Importance of Learning the Classics
    L:Freire

    I can finally say (having contributed to the Art category) that I can better appreciate your text and the object it covers. I have often heard that when a person has a near death experience that they see a sequence of their entire life flash before them. I can only say of this artwork that Picasso may have been trying to capture that tragic element of life through this montage. A very valiant attempt at seizing the flurry of processes that traverse the human body in that moment.

    Picasso's Guernica: 80 Years Later
    L:Freire

    Your synthesis of the Kishōtenketsu model made the reading worthwhile. I guess the model explains how two or more invariably disparate entities can coexist, and more importantly, rationalize each other in the eyes of the audience without so much as a whimper in the path of a metaphorical storm. In view of that, philosophy (and psychology) provide fertile ground for the writer and the audience. Good show.

    The Philosophy of Conflict in Literature
    L:Freire

    I believe you are right about the lack of scholarly introspection into dystopian themes. Yet, the literature abounds and you didn’t even mention Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury which seems to fit into the destructive agenda of such movements: television surveillance in 1984, book annihilation in Bradbury–what’s next, hijacking and commoditization of human thought? Someone should write on that part.

    What is the Purpose of Dystopian Literature?
    L:Freire

    The entire article is fascinating. The most intriguing part, however, is the paragraph that combines the definition with psychological relevance and mainstream authors such as Gladwell. It’s amazing how the human mind can hover over an insignificant point while hindsight resolves the major hurdles, practically in our sleep as you mention therein.

    Thin Slicing in Jane Austen's "Emma"
    L:Freire

    Amyus–Thanks for the remarks. It’s probably just a glitch. But, just in case, that blank patch should be a link to a sound recording on the Mary Celeste. I am providing a copy for the benefit of all readers below. I wanted to provide imagery from all angles for all palettes, enjoy–Luis

    Tide of Mutiny: A Cinematic Chronicle of Maritime Mishap
    L:Freire

    This topic was expressed with clarity and intrigue. It reminded me of another Scandinavian art form, the folktale. Plain and simply adept at stimulating the imagination, either through songs, tales, or any craft.

    A 1841 Norwegian folktale by Jørgen Moe and Peter Christen Asbjørnsen.
    (Note: shoon is a shoe, bairns are children)

    ‘Then they built themselves houses,
    And stitched themselves shoon,
    And had so many bairns
    They reached up to the moon.’

    Celebrating Finnish folk songs: Finland's centennial anniversary