Formalism in Casablanca
Casablanca, directed by Michael Curtiz and released in 1942, exhibits qualities of both the Classical Hollywood Narrative and Art Cinema. These two film structures are the equivalent to formalism in literature, but also point to other frameworks including feminism, postmodernism and new historicism. Art cinema and Classical Hollywood Narrative marry in Casablanca in a way which informs the character development and narrative trajectory of the film. The fact that the Classical Hollywood Narrative is so identifiable in this film goes to show its historical time and place; the use of experimentation which would become a staple of Art Cinema is indicative of the fact that Casablanca uses unconventional textual devices to convey meaning, character and story, and also that Casablanca is a film which demonstrates the slowly changing standard of filmmaking at that time.
The Classical Hollywood Narrative was and arguably still is the standard model for Hollywood made films and movies. It consists of a few basic components according to which Casablanca is largely constructed. Eshowsky.com has narrowed them down to a few basic categories. Specifically, some these components are elision, cause and effect, motivation, hero/protagonist and...
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