The Myths and Metaphors of Music and Dance: Singin' in the Rain.
Delameter, Jerome (2001) The Myths and Metaphors of Music and Dance: Singin' in the Rain. In: What a Glorious Feeling: Gene Kelly and the Hollywood Musical. -.
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The Hollywood musical functions, as do most genre films, by an exploitation of cultural myths. Principal among them is the idea, posited by Claude Levi-Strauss, that myths mediate oppositions, thereby helping to overcome conflicts and contradictions. In the musical, therefore, the lead couple represent opposing cultural values that must be reconciled in order to achieve a resolution of the film's narrative. That resolution, moreover, is accomplished through the metaphors of song and dance. In the film Singin' in the Rain the characters embody oppositions of individuality vs. community and high culture vs. popular entertainment. By suggesting that the Hollywood musical is the pinnacle of color, sound filmmaking, Singin' in the Rain reinforces a myth that creating popular entertainment is a simple communal effort dependent on a star's innate talent and a couple's reciprocal love.
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