edward hopper movie
While the theater depicted in New York Movie is entirely designed by him, he took inspiration from the Palace Theatre (New York City), the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre (at the time known as the Globe Theatre), the Republic Theater (now known as the New Victory Theater, and the Strand Theatre (Manhattan),  making over fifty sketches of the theaters before he began the project.  Hopper was fascinated by film, and it is said that, when experiencing creative block, he would stay at the theater all day.  Despite his fascination with film, New York Movie itself depicts an isolation and melancholy, even though theaters at the time sat up to thousands. Furthermore, some critics argue that the usherette is lost in her imagination only as a result of her separation from the movie currently playing, a sleight against movie going audiences of the time period,  and that her separation incurs sympathy within the viewer.  Others claim that New York Movie and other paintings of city life are Hopper’s ode to the warmth and endurance of the human spirit in the midst of the dehumanizing existence that is mass living.  Hopper also drew inspiration from Edgar Degas—specifically Interior—in terms of the composition of the lighting as well as the overall nocturnal nature of the work. 
New York Movie is an oil on canvas painting by American Painter Edward Hopper. The painting was begun in December of 1938 and finished in January of 1939.  Measuring 32 1/4 x 40 1/8″, New York Movie depicts a nearly empty movie theater occupied with a few scattered moviegoers and a pensive usherette lost in her thoughts. Praised for its brilliant portrayal of multiple light sources, New York Movie is one of Hoper’s well-regarded works. Despite the fact that the movie in the painting itself is not known, Hopper’s wife and fellow painter Josephine Hopper has written in her notes on New York Movie that the image represents fragments of snow-covered mountains. 
“Unconsciously, probably, I was painting the loneliness of a large city,” Edward Hopper once remarked of his masterpiece Nighthawks, the famous scene depicting a downtown diner late at night. In fact, many pieces in Hopper’s oeuvre, a sun-drenched yet grimly nostalgic memento of midcentury modern America, depict solitary figures engaged in an act of reflection. Whether we see them deep in thought in the morning sun or swallowing whisky at a bar after dark, Hopper’s paintings conjure a sense of curiosity for his subjects’ past – and indeed, Vienna-born director Gustav Deutsch was so inspired by this aura of mystery that he decided to create Shirley: Visions of Reality, an exquisite example of interdisciplinary cinema based on the imagery in Hopper’s paintings. It was first released in 2013, but the film is now back in the limelight thanks to a Hopper retrospective in Bologna which focuses on the artist’s influence on cinema.
Happy Monday! #AnOtherHappyMonday
A movie theater in New York, one of those elaborate mock palaces where Hollywood spirits us for a few hours into another world – in this case apparently the high mountains. Spirits us as audience, that is, but not the usher, who has probably seen the movie a thousand times and waits for the curtain, mulling over her own thoughts. Her stationary figure counterpoints the screen with its incessantly flickering illusions of places not here and not now.
Like most of the female figures in Hopper’s paintings, this one was based on his wife, Jo, who posed standing under a lamp in the hall of their apartment. As the many preliminary studies for the picture show, Hopper not only drew his wife in various different poses for New York Movie, but precisely designed the auditorium decor, down to the pattern of the carpet. Again and again he sketched the foyers, stairways, and auditoriums of his favorite movie houses, the Palace, Globe, Republic, and Strand.
This 1948 RKO production features this list because it shares many of the reasons mentioned before – the use of light, the themes – but Force of Evil is different in a way that it portraits the pessimist view over America that the painter had. It gives a complete sense of Hopper’s New York – featuring the typical New York architecture, the Brooklyn bridge, lighthouses, as well as, the rocky coastal area.
Alfred Hitchcock moved to America in 1939 after a celebrated contract with David O. Selznick. In the US, he would shoot some of his most known classics and deepen the relationship his cinema had with the realism of Edward Hopper.
Shangri-La, the idyllic, secluded valley, high in the mountains, where there is perpetual peace and people live on for hundreds of years in good health, is the fictional setting for Capra’s movie. But if there ever existed a physical place as enthralling and carefree as Shangri-La, then it must have been found in the alluring magic of the cinema. In 1930s America, going to the movies was a ritual in itself, a passage into another world, where one could leave all their worries behind and, for a couple of hours, take delight in the beauty and glamor of Hollywood.
“In these days of wars and rumors of wars – haven’t you ever dreamed of a place where there was peace and security, where living was not a struggle but a lasting delight?” This is the question that starts off Frank Capra’s 1937 movie, Lost Horizon. “Of course you have. So has every man since time began. Always the same dream. Sometimes he calls it Utopia – Sometimes the Fountain of Youth – Sometimes merely that little chicken farm.”
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13 of Edward Hopper’s paintings are brought alive by the film, telling the story of a woman, whose thoughts, emotions and contemplations let us observe an era in American history.
The film’s 13 scenes, each corresponding to a Hopper painting and extending to a period of six minutes either before or after the moment captured on that painting, are featured in chronological order from 1931 till 1963 with an introductory snapshot based on Hopper’s 1965 “Chair Car”. In these scenes—static tableaux vivants with little action or dialogue that take place on the 28th of August in the year the picture was painted—we glimpse through Shirley’s inner monologues and sparse lines to her partner, who remains silent throughout the movie, and the minor and major events in her life, we witness her playing the role of a bored blonde usherette in a movie, taking up menial jobs to secure her livelihood, retiring to the countryside and so on. In order to place each scene within a historical context, a radio news-broadcast precedes each scene depicting the Depression, WWII, the Cold War, Korea, JFK and Martin Luther King, all the way to Vietnam.
Photo by Jerzy Palacz.