I thought Sunset Boulevard was a great film. It started out being about the screenwriter Joe Gillis, but you quickly find out half way through this movie, which is about the retired actress Norma Desmond. I thought this film contained qualities we do not normally see in film now a days. Longer takes, great acting, with limited action scenes, as well as hidden story in the movie. Talking about speaking film, taking over the past quiet films.
In the mise en scene at Norma Desmond’s house you can see she is obsessed with herself by having all the pictures. She only watches her silent films with amazement in her face. And at the end she is so caught up in herself she thinks news reporters show up to film her. I will say the end scene where she cascades down the stairs step by step, ever so slightly, makes for one of the best ending shots in a movie for my opinion.
The acting in this last scene is beautiful. You see everyone still in character, amazed, the disbelief someone is really this nuts and thinking she’s being filmed by the news. We talked about the aspect of the eyes to early silent films and how that was the most important feature. She has a brightness in her eyes, and this is something we do not see any more in film.
What I take away from the movie is the editing and camera work being very precise. Every shot is still on a tripod, dolly, or crane. The editing flows and you get the wrapped up in the movie where you just simply enjoy watching something creative.