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Thesis statement Success in moviemaking demands the incorporation of a good plotline, believable characters and a socio-cultural strong theme, as is seen in the movie Mean Streets. Summary of the Plot Charlie is the protagonist in the film. He works for his uncle, Mr. Giovanni who is the head of a New York mafia gang. Charlie attempts to rise through the ranks of mafia organization, but his Catholic convictions and sense of responsibility towards his friend Johnny Boy dissuade him. Charlie is having a secret affair with Teresa, Johnny’s cousin who is ostracized because she is epileptic. Charlie attempts to secure redemption from the Catholic Church, unsuccessfully. He resorts to succoring Johnny as a way of realizing this redemption. Johnny goes to Michael’s bar, where Michael unsuccessfully coerces him into settling his debts. This leads to a brawl between the two. Later on, Michael and his henchmen trail the Johnny, Charlie and Teresa, engaging them into a drive-by shooting. Johnny is shot in the neck and Charlie who is also the driver, in the hand. This causes the car to crush. An ambulance arrives and its paramedics whisk away the three to a hospital (Mean Streets, 1). Dimensions and Criteria for Evaluating the Film Different dimensions can be used to evaluate the effectiveness of a movie. The four main dimensions include: the use of sound; composition of the movie; theatrical dimensions of the film image; and the dimensions between artistic traditions and the movie. The theatrical dimension which mainly factors the film image is well seen in the way Scorsese as the movie director uses lighting and its different entities. For example, at an instance, Giovanni as the leader of the New York Mafia gang is depicted against a dark background, in his secret rendezvous. Herein, Giovanni has a cigar in his hand, convincing Charlie to severe his association with his Johnny Boy, since honorable men hang with honorable men. This clearly helps the audience identify Giovanni as a villain and his rendezvous as a crime den. There are several criteria that are applicable in evaluating the film. The story, characters, direction and overall effectiveness of the film are some of the criteria that can be used to evaluate Mean Streets. Touching the criterion which is the storyline, Mean Streets is a success because the storyline has complete concomitance with the intent of the movie. It is obvious that the author intended to bring out the aspect of democratization of religion, in the movie. The movie’s storyline brings out this aspect successfully. Charlie is good-willed, despite the rut he finds himself in. The convictions he has for Catholicism is still deeply etched in his person and he resultantly seeks redemption in the Catholic Church, albeit unsuccessfully. He sacrifices himself for his friend Johnny to gain this redemption. The church’s act of turning down Charlie’s noble intent effectively brings out the failure of religion to democratize. This also serves as a clarion call for change. The characters remain believable throughout the movie. Cesare Danova as Giovanni possesses a serious mien which fits the role he plays as the local caporegime. Giovanni sits in his office well dressed and smoking a cigar. He tells Charlie that honorable men go with honorable men. This helps portray Giovanni as the ringleader of the mafia group. At the same time, the same ...Show more
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Insert Name Class Date Title Introduction The film Mean Streets was released in 1973, having been directed by Martin Scorsese and authored by Martin Scorsese himself, and his college, Martin Mardik. The film has been a success, going by the fact that the Library of Congress included it in the US National Film Registry’s repository…
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