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Movies Chicago, Evelyn, Gladiator, A Beautiful Mind

There are images that are usually associated with an actor’s work.  For example, in Gladiator, there is the image of Russell Crowe picking up soil in a soldier and gladiator’s uniform.  In A Beautiful Mind, there is the image of Russell Crowe looking out the window that is scribbled with mathematical equations.  These are lasting images and they convey much of the character in the film.

Another example is the character of Sam Connelly in the movie, Evelyn.  One lasting image that conveys who he is in the latter years of his life is shown briefly in the courtroom.  He is standing at the balcony and in his right hand, he is holding out his drink canister with a rosary intertwined in his fingers.  This image can quickly be missed if one isn’t paying close attention.

Why is this image important to this character?  It joins his view of the “holy spirit” which is his drink and his religious belief.  When he decided to become part of the legal team for Pierce Brosnan’s character, he said that the only holy spirit he knows is his drink.  So there’s a tug-o-war of the images of “bad and good” in his character.  That is, if the religion aspect is considered good.  Evelyn illustrates the good and bad of established religion.  Sam Connelly is a great, legal mind, a once great rugby player, and according to the movie, he is a major reason Pierce Brosnan’s case wins in the Irish Supreme Court.  So, Sam Connelly’s character of standing in a courtroom where he holds out his drink with a rosary, envisions a once great athlete whose greatness in the past has prepared him for further greatness in his future as a great legal mind.  Moreover, he is a retired lawyer who likes his drink as well as a religious person who believes in his country’s Christian foundation by practicing it on a personal level.  This is shown when Quinn sees Connelly’s hidden rosary.  So Sam Connelly summarizes, like in many characters in movies, the widely accepted view of what life is about, the tug-o-war within, of “good and bad.”

Another example is the image of the red scarf in the movie, Chicago, starring Catherine Zeta-Jones and Renee Zellweger.  This blood-red scarf is a dark comedy image.  It makes you smile and scared at the same time.  The dance sequence where the red scarf is used is one of the best I have ever seen.  The scarf exemplifies the women prisoners in the movie as well as the fascination for blood in the city of Chicago, so this artistic detail is effective in characterizing Jones and Zellweger, who at the end, do their dance routine with guns—again, displaying their dark comedy characters.

So once again, filmmakers continue to show their creative genius in their choice of artistic details.

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