June, 12, 2009
Friendship and Loyalty in Some Like it Hot
After viewing Billy Wilder's 1959 classic Some Like It Hot, it was apparent why the film was voted as the number one comedy by the American Film Institute (www.sheppardstownfilmsociety.org). Wonderfully constructed, this movie has all the characteristics that establish Wilder’s signature feature films: brilliant costuming, a subtle use of shadows and setting to establish a mood, and the cinematic of Film Noir (www.imagesjournal.com). Another characteristic in Wilder’s films is that of his characters, which he portrays to share realistic relationships with each other. This movie demonstrates with comedy, the theme that friendship and loyalty means everything; and it is those two characteristics that build lasting relationships.
As the film opens, the viewer is transported back to 1920's Chicago. Billy Wilder utilized black and white film to create a mood of nostalgia and an improved use of shadows, and this helps to also play down the garishness of Tony Curtis’s and Jack Lemmon’s makeup. These contrast tones also helped the viewer to remember the gangster movies of the 20's and 30's. Prohibition was in full swing and a cabaret run by Spats, the mobster lord, is under surveillance by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (www.filmsite.org).
Two struggling musicians played by Curtis and Lemmon, witnesses what looks like the St. Valentine's Day Massacre and try to find a way out of the city before they are found and killed by the mob (www.variety.com). The only job that will pay their way is an all girl band so the two dress up as women. In addition to being forced into hiding, the two men are faced with other quandaries. One falls for another band member but can't tell her his true gender, and the other has a rich male suitor who will not take "No," for an answer (www.filmsite.org). Through these trials and tribulations Joe and Jerry face they rely on...