Placeholder Image

Subtitles section Play video

  • - Hi, I'm Amy Walker.

  • Hey, youse guys, I'm Amy Walker.

  • That's right, I'm Amy Walker.

  • Oh gee, ah geez, that's right, Amy Walker.

  • Ah geez, I'm Amy Walker, okay.

  • [beeps] [Amy claps]

  • I'm Amy Walker, actress, singer, and writer,

  • most known for authentic accents.

  • And today from my home cave to yours,

  • we are looking at American accents in movies.

  • - Do you wanna be a cop?

  • - That's the Verrazano Bridge.

  • - Only exciting thing about--

  • - Who said I was getting rid of it?

  • - Give me a minute, Burt.

  • [hand smacks]

  • - We're in the middle of a practice, Leanne.

  • - You can thank me later.

  • - This is The Blind Side, directed by John Lee Hancock

  • in 2009, and we're looking at Sandra Bullock

  • doing a Memphis, Tennessee accent.

  • - This team's your family, Michael.

  • You have to protect them.

  • - I like the way she says "Michael,"

  • and it's a little bit nasal.

  • "You can thank me later."

  • You know that kind of a tighter Tennessee accent

  • that's not real drawly down in here.

  • Some of the things that make a Tennessee accent different

  • from, like a Texas accent, the jaw is a lot more tight.

  • So the sounds are gonna be a little bit flatter,

  • a little bit wider, like up in here, in the "what."

  • She really grasps, I think, the placement of it.

  • - And I will be by there after a while.

  • I gotta call you back.

  • Bye.

  • - When she says "after a while," there's that W-H,

  • but then she says, "I gotta call you back," -ack,

  • and then the tongue drops down a little further

  • than it would if it was staying up in here.

  • "I gotta call you back."

  • And then when she just went "back,"

  • it dropped into more of a standard.

  • - My name is on it.

  • Deliver what I ordered, all right?

  • Thank you.

  • - When you say "what," the mouth is

  • gonna be tighter up in the back,

  • and then it's gonna just flip down a little bit there.

  • What, auht, and it's gonna scoop back a little bit.

  • And then you get to that H your Ws.

  • You can just do wh-, wh-, instead of waa.

  • Other dialects where you'll get more of a "what,"

  • more of a schwa sound, uh, but the "what,"

  • that's nice and a little bit more north.

  • It also gives that emphasis that she's choosing to use,

  • to put her foot down there.

  • When you're playing someone real who existed,

  • then you gotta listen, not just for the general accent,

  • but what are those -isms that that person has

  • that are unique to that person.

  • - Families are always rising and falling

  • in America, am I right?

  • - Who said that?

  • - Hawthorne.

  • [imitates fart]

  • - What's the matter, smart ass?

  • You don't know any [beeps] Shakespeare?

  • - This is The Departed, directed by Martin Scorsese in 2006.

  • So we're gonna look at three actors from this film,

  • Mark Wahlberg, Martin Sheen, and Leonardo DiCaprio.

  • Mark Wahlberg is the only one

  • who's actually from Massachusetts.

  • - I know what you are, okay?

  • I know what you are, and I know what you're not.

  • - Obviously, Mark Wahlberg is all over the Boston.

  • "I know what you are."

  • That's that ah, totally relaxed.

  • So it's not arrr, it's not aaaah.

  • It's "I know what you are, and I know what you're not."

  • "Are" and "not," strangely, are very similar.

  • Like if it's in New York,

  • "not" and "are" are gonna feel really different.

  • But for Boston, they're really similar.

  • - Do you wanna be a cop?

  • Or do you wanna appear to be a cop?

  • - When Martin Sheen says "cop," it's nearly there,

  • but when you get that ah for a Boston,

  • it's like your tongue is a dead fish, aw, aw.

  • It weighs like a brick.

  • So it's not awh, that being more into like Brooklyn.

  • - A lot of guys wanna appear to be cops.

  • A gun, badge, pretend they're on TV.

  • - And then it's just gone.

  • He's got kind of the rhythm, but it's not, like, that open.

  • It's a little bit tight.

  • I think he's from Ohio or something.

  • - I'm all set without your own personal job application.

  • - [Dignam] What the [beeps] did you say to me?

  • - And Leo is so in the emotion

  • and sometimes when we get in the emotion,

  • the accent goes out the window.

  • They're kind of painting it in that it's okay for him

  • to just, like, sometimes have one and sometimes not.

  • - The only exciting thing about 2002

  • is that it's a palindrome.

  • - This is Lady Bird, directed by Greta Gerwig in 2017,

  • starring Saoirse Ronan, who's an Irish actress.

  • - Oh, so now you're mad

  • because I wanna to listen - No, it's just you're

  • being ridiculous, because you - to music.

  • - This is set in Sacramento, Northern California.

  • So when she says "because I wanted to listen to music,"

  • "I wanted to," that "wanted," I call it a hard N.

  • It's not "wanted."

  • It's not "wanted" with a D.

  • It's just "wanted."

  • Some of the distinctions of a Sacramento

  • or Northern California accent,

  • people tend to soften the consonants a little bit,

  • like when she says "East Coast."

  • Those T's are very East Coast.

  • But if you put those consonants in,

  • people might feel like you're pissed off or something.

  • So it tends to be pretty relaxed in the mouth.

  • Not a lot of diphthong.

  • Really, what we'd call probably a pretty standard accent.

  • The thing about emotional scenes is

  • that it can be really hard to maintain something

  • that doesn't feel like you,

  • because you're in your most primal state.

  • - I'm not going to a [beeps] university

  • that's famous for its [beeps] agricultural school!

  • - The way she says "school," in this American accent,

  • it goes out, you know, "school."

  • She'd be used to "school."

  • So it'd be like err.

  • There's so much that's different in Ireland.

  • I mean the melody, you know, and the T's,

  • and the way it's so soft.

  • It's like water.

  • But to take all that and open it up a little bit

  • at the corners of the mouth and let it just sit

  • in the mouth would be more challenging.

  • Singing is really a whole different territory.

  • It can be easier sometimes to sing in an accent

  • because you hold the vowels more.

  • For whatever reason, a lot of people can at least sing

  • in an American accent.

  • Everybody says don't, everybody says don't ♪

  • Everybody says don't walk on the grass

  • - She nails it.

  • She totally nails it.

  • - Who?

  • Who is this?

  • The hunting buddy, I know that.

  • - This is Brokeback Mountain, directed by Ang Lee in 2005.

  • And we'll be looking at Anne Hathaway's Southern accent.

  • She's originally from New York.

  • - It might be some pretend place

  • where bluebirds sing, and there's a whiskey spring.

  • - The way that her mouth is kind of puckered down here.

  • That's gonna work real well.

  • So you can see it real well in this scene

  • cause it's nice and close.

  • What's going on here, and then when she says "close,"

  • or "coal," or something, when she's got an L-word,

  • you can see that W happen.

  • - You've been going up to Wyoming all these years.

  • Why can't your buddy come down here to Texas and fish?

  • - It's kind of a fishing melody.

  • Why can't you do this?

  • [hums]

  • It's got a bit of weight to it.

  • That kinda melody is quintessential Texas.

  • - You know you're worse than Bobby