Monday, April 27, 2009

The Modern Midas (Presented by Group Four)

While trying to decide on a topic for our group project, we had to take into consideration that one of our group members was going to be gone the day that we were supposed to present. This, of course, posed a small problem. However, through our extremely innovative and creative thinking, we discovered a way to include her in our class presentation and rid ourselves of the stress of actually speaking in front of the class. We would make a movie.

At first, I was a little ambivalent because my acting skills are sub par to say the least. It's true, I have stage fright. But after a long nail biting session that left me with very sore fingers, I realised that my stage fright is even worse when it comes to public speaking. Making a movie was in fact a great alternative for me, not only because it was very informal, but because I had almost no audience to worry about during the filming. Although we had an outline of what we wanted to do for each scene, there was no pre-written script to memorise, so I did not have to worry about forgetting my lines. Not to mention, it was a fun experience and I think that it turned out pretty well.

Anyway, back to the topic of our group presentation as a whole. We decided to base our movie on the story of Midas. Since greed and rumours are such a relevant thing to today's society, we figured it would be an easy tale to modernise. Naturally, we picked Donald Trump to represent the character of Midas. Not only is he is a figure that everybody knows well, he is also so wealthy that it seems everything he touches does in a sense turn to gold. Going along with the idea of Pan, Apollo and music, we decided to incorporate Trump's show "The Apprentice." The two surviving contestants on the show, Paula and Pam, are required to put on a charity concert event. Even though Pan and Apollo are males, we decided that they could be females in the new version and came up with names that corresponded with the original ones. The concert that Trump and his assistants like the most wins, and the competitor who put it together gets to be Trump's apprentice. Although Paula's concert is more thought out and obviously more popular with the crowd, Pam wins the competition. Paula vows that Trump will regret his decision, and you see later on that he does. Originally we had thought about actually giving Trump donkey ears in our video, but decided to change it up a bit. One thing that Donald is known for is his hair, so we thought, "why not make him bald or give him a receding hairline instead?" Thus we had him go to the barber where Paula, disguised of course, begins to cut his hair. As she indicated that he would, Trump receives an unwelcome surprise for picking the worse contestant. His hair disappears with the blink of an eye. Rather than whispering the secret to the ground in our movie, we used the idea of picture messaging. Cell phones are something that literally everyone uses today and that many people base their life around, so what better way to get the word out that Trump is now bald. Another small detail that is worth mentioning is that all of the customers waiting in the lobby at the barber's are reading books that we have read and discussed in this class.

The movie is definitely ridiculous and cheesy, but that was our objective from the beginning. Comedy has played a large role in this class, so we decided to take it to another level and just go over the top like Aristophanes did in Lysistrata. Zach had a Jesus costume, and someone had to give Trump the golden touch, so we incorporated him in as a silly character. The dialogue was of course also somewhat vulgar and ridiculous as well. Hopefully everyone enjoyed it and was able to see the reflection of Ovid's story of Midas in our video.

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