Homework #4: Spectacular Cinema

Atlanta Burning sequence, Victor Fleming, Gone with the Wind (1939)
Atlanta Burning sequence, Victor Fleming, Gone with the Wind (1939)

Hollywood in the 1930s was filled with spectacles, from the musical fantasies of Busby Berkleey to surreal costumes and sets in The Wizard of Oz and the attention to historical accuracy in Gone with the Wind. These large budget films (the Oz budget was 2.77M and Gone with the Wind was approx. 3.9M) demonstrate the desire to create an immersive cinema that transported audiences from the somber realities of the Great Depression. Listen to the short NPR news story on the making of Gone with the Wind and note the grand scale of the production, from the long casting process to the interest in historical accuracy as well as the subsequent controversies. In addition, read a New York Post article that draws attention to the controversial aspects of the film.

Share with your classmates examples of films that function like spectacles. What big-budget movies have produced similar spectacular settings to captivate audiences? What do you think of the extravagant budgets of these films? 

Listen to the NPR Gone with the Wind Story here.

NYPost article: “Gone with the Wind” should go the way of the Confederate flag”

To complete this homework assignment, note whether you Post or Comment. For Homework #4, Diamonds and Spades will submit a Post and Clubs and Hearts will Comment (choose any of your classmates’ posts to comment on).

Homework #4 is DUE by Thursday October 15th.
 Diamonds and Spades Post, Clubs and Hearts Comment, note your blog group! Email me if you forget.

13 thoughts on “Homework #4: Spectacular Cinema”

  1. Although this movie didn’t have a budget of approximately 3.9 million James Cameron’s Avatar had a budget of 261 million. This movie was a big impact on the movie goers. This movie captivated the people when it first came out it was something different at the time and it gave a good picture of what humans are capable of today. We are greedy humans and although this movie is a Sci-fi it gives a good idea of what is happening in the real world. We have destroy this world for our needs we have destroy the most precious lands of some people in order to be able to gain power. Worst of all we have becomes vicious people who instead of seeking peace and happiness we have gone out to seek power to intimidate others.
    In short words what this movie did was to tell people that we are screwing up big time and we should understand by now because the examples are clear what else do we want? Examples in apples and oranges?

    1. Hello, I think Avatar is a great movie. The budget was on the money. There was so many spectacular scenes, graphic, visual effects and much more to see. It takes you into another world, that you can’t image. This movie is particularly about the real world and the existing to the future. In the movie industry sometimes money is everything so you can get your point across. But some simple budgets films still can make alot of money. I enjoy that they made one of the main characters of the film with a disability. It shows how diverse the director is. Avatar was a hit in the movies. It was worth seeing more then one time!

  2. Harry potter and deathly hallows was a movie that had a budget of 250 million, although it doesn’t compare to the movie Gone with the wind it had a budget for about 3.9 million or in today money approximately 65 million. The Deathly hallows made almost 2 billion. The movie, which is split in two parts were the last movies of the Harry Potter series. With that it had a big impact on the movie goers, a much bigger impact on of fans of the series. This was the last movie so it this was the end of something big. It’s been a decade of the series and it was finally coming to an end. That for me and many other people was like are childhood something we grew up with and now its end. The movie was such a hit and the series to. The deathly hallows “it all ends” with the movie ending, it had to be big. The war between the good and evil wizards comes to end. The battle with HARRY and THE DARK LOARD. With the end of something it had to be big, so when telling the story in the film they need to include so much great scenes and fights and use of CGi. So with an end of a great series they needed to have closure with everything mention throughout the movies. The movie had an impact because it was like “ wow that’s how It ends”. The movie/series impact was that it made many people be fans. It also was one of the first novel based films to be split. Also there is now an amusement park based on harry potter world. Harry potter and the deathly hollows was the end, but with the films it was popular with our pop culture.

    1. I love harry potter and I think they’re one of those movies who have amazing graphics that no one can really top off! They show magic in such a way that honestly it’s beautiful.

    2. Harry Potter is one of my favorite series! The amount of money that goes into it is insane, but the amount amazement that comes out of it is even more impressive. It’s incredible how much work comes out of it. Harry Potter by far one of the most profitable entertainment series of all time. The storyline, special effects, and acting just pulls you in. This was an awesome example!

      1. Harry Potter is also one of my favorite series. From young elementary school days, I have been reading the books and following it up with the movie. Because of its popularity, yes, tons of money go into creating a Harry Potter film. However, the series numbers always compliment the cost. For example, the deathly hollow almost made 2 million dollars in return. So although the budget for one of the films can easily be 250 million dollars, the outcome is tremendous.

    3. Harry Potter has been one of my favorites since about the 6th grade. When the first movie came out, fans rushed to the theaters because the book series was such a hit (I know I did). JK Rowling’s elaborate descriptions of fictional characters, settings, emotions and every other aspect of her series made it impossible to create a low budget movie. I am not surprised a bit that the budget was 250 million dollars. I’ve been dying to go to Orlando, Florida again to visit the Harry Potter attraction in Universal Studios! It is fairly new so last time I went the exhibit hadn’t been completed. I’m positive that it is making tons of money due to the large fan base Harry Potter truly has.

  3. Transformers: Revenge of the fallen is a very good movie that had an outrageous budget of $220 million. The creativity and realistic features of the autobots makes this movie seem as it is actually happening. The digital effects capture war between two factions of alien robots, the Autobots and the Decepticons. (enemy robots) In the ending of the movie which I consider to be the most spectacular event of the whole film is when Optimus revives when Sam uses the matrix to his chest.Optimus awakes and fights The Fallen until Megatron interferes.Optimus, now much stronger than before, defeats Megatron and cripples him. The Fallen fights Optimus again and starts to tear his new armour apart, but Optimus overpowers him. Wounded, The Fallen attempts to escape, but Optimus rips his spark out of his chest, killing him, while an injured Megatron watches in horror. The scene is remarkably good and definitely captures all viewers attention. I think sometimes its great to invest in special effects to appeal to viewers new technology. The film grossed in $200 million in its first five days, putting it in second place behind The Dark Knight’s $203.7 million for the all-time biggest five-day opening. So the money spent was definitely worth it!

    1. I think the budget of “Transformers: Revenge of the fallen” was worth it. The amount of special effects in this film drew a crowd. This action packed movie would have you sitting on the edge of your seat. The fact that they spent that amount of money to make a film is amazing. Especially when you never know if a movie would be a hit in theaters or not. That takes some faith.

  4. Transformers: Age Of Extinction one of many transformers movies which was released in 2014, had a budget of 210 million dollars. If you have seen this last transformers compared to the others you can see why this film budget was so high. Throughout the movie there was explosion thrill and some other pretty amazing scenes. 210 million dollars is a lot of money however every bit of it was worth it because the movie brought in 1.04 billion dollars in the box office. The number it did gave it the title of the highest grossing film in 2014. It also received a lot of bad reviews from critics, however to me it is one of the best in the transformers series. I also believe that most of the bad reviews may have come from the character changes in the film, most of the actors from the first three transformers were not in this movie. However based on the numbers it did you really can not tell the difference. Men Lie women lie but number don’t.

  5. The first Avengers movie had a budget of $220 million and it quickly became a staple in today’s pop culture. With many of the Avengers becoming pop culture icons. It revived the careers of Robert Downey Jr and Mark Ruffalo while making the rest like Jeremy Renner household name. The final battle is a visual spectacle from beginning to end. Especially the circle pan shot of every Avenger standing in a circle in battle stance is the most iconic moment of the film as the Avengers have finally set aside their difference and is ready to defend Earth as one team and not a volatile time bomb. The Avengers beat out the Nolan Batman films as the top grossing superhero franchise and the top grossing Disney film.

  6. Fursions 7 was a very good movie. This movie had a budget of $190,000,000. This movie is about a terrorist that needed to be destroyed. That terrorist name is Owen Shaw. This movie is about a group of drivers that became a family after sending a long period of time together. Owen wouldn’t give up; he was after the driving crew for a while. He wouldn’t stop until he got the crew and kill them. The drivers return back to United States to live there regular lives. This film had to put on hold, it later cause a delay because there was rewrites that needed to be done due to the pasting of one of the actors Paul Walker. The rewrites of this movie took place with Paul Walker’s brother Caleb but is known as Cody in the movie. This movie had lots of dramatic effects and lots of explosions. In the very begin there was a package that was sent to Vin Diesel aka Dominic Toretto to his front door. This package was labeled from Tokyo and Dominic automatically suspected it to be a bomb.

  7. I think Lord of the Rings is such a pinnacle in movie franchises because it segwayed many films to do back-to-back productions just like them because of their success. The Lord of the Rings trilogy will always be the best trilogy, it was also quite expensive 260mil for its time not only did it have success but has been influential for many fantasy films. I also think that it was a very hard film to orchestrate but Peter Jackson is a genius. The Lord of the rings trilogy is a bible for many people because it’s just that good. People till this day praise those films heavily.

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