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Film Comedy: Some Like it Hot, Annie Hall, and The Graduate

            The genre of comedy in film is characterized as light-hearted, fun-filled amusement that generates laughs and enjoyment from the audience. This type of genre is one of many that is included in film to categorize common patterns of form and content (Corrigan, 2012). Identifying similar themes, character attributes, and narrative conventions all attribute to the idea of genre. This type of classification helps viewers examine films based on certain structures, story lines, and patterns. Genre is also another way for filmmakers to gauge which type of film people want to see. As movie goers, we are basically in control of which movies are successful and which aren't. And as those audience members, we have a predisposition as to what we expect when viewing a film from a particular genre. We know that when we are in the mood for comedy, we expect to laugh at well-timed gags or jokes, or hysterical narration. As they say, humor is the best medicine, and in film, this cannot be truer. When watching a movie, one is completely immersed in the feelings and motifs of the characters, settings, and dialogue. This is especially accurate when watching comedy. Most of the themes we recognize when viewing comedy are ones we are familiar with, ones we may encounter every day. It is the main reason why we think it's so funny and we laugh. Comedy in film was originally used as a medium where we could take something serious, like love, death, marriage, and poke fun of it. Humanize it, if you will. Humor has always been a way for us to understand the world and for us to laugh at ourselves about the ups and downs of life. As Belton states in our text, "whatever a society represses frequently returns in the form of comedy to taunt it." To further my interpretation of story pattern, stereotypical characters, and the social functions of comedy, an introduction to the classic films: Some Like it Hot, Annie Hall, and The Graduate will be analyzed to illustrate genre expectations.

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