In Solaris, within the limits of heterotopic experience, several theoretical and ontological questions are examined through approaches on each character. Berton declares one of the main philosophical themes of the movie when he tells Kelvin: "You want to destroy that which we are presently incapable of understanding? Forgive me, but I am not an advocate of knowledge at any price. Knowledge is only valid when it's based on morality." The ocean does not mean anything as an object, it simply exists. (...) The ocean is not found in any of the human experimental approaches. DOI: 10.13140/RG.2.2.15910.68169 . (shrink)
Tarkovsky opposed to the movie editing and considered that the basis of the art of cinematography (movie art) is the internal rhythm of images. He considers cinema as a representation of distinctive currents or time waves, transmitted in the film through its internal rhythm. Rhythm is at the heart of the "poetic film". A rhythm like a movement inside the frame ("sculpting in time"), not as a sequence of images in time. Time within the frame expresses something significant and true (...) that goes beyond the events itself, received differently by each spectator. The rhythm is not determined by the length of the sequences, but by the pressure of time passing through them. DOI: 10.13140/RG.2.2.11136.48642. (shrink)
According to a dogma mainly set up by Heidegger and Horkheimer/Adorno technology prevents the humans from reflecting their own situation in the world. Revealing the conditions of being is not only every humans main task, but even that of philosophy and art. From this point of view the motion picture taken to be merely a piece of technology is not of any worth philosophically and also not considered as art. This dogma is false. It is derived from the assertion that (...) a motion picture has only technical aspects. Indeed it would be impossible to produce it without technology. But a film expresses it‘s director‘s view of the world. This is not systematically different from what an author or composer does with his works. A Film can show why and how artifacts are used and thereby reveal and maybe explain what I call an artifact‘s history of sense. This makes a view of the world understandable. (shrink)
Investigating the role of visualisations in science (broadly defined) is a meta-scientific question, a self-reflexive inquiry into, among other things, the method of research activity itself. In the field of philosophy, such a self-reflective inquiry can be illustrated by the following questions: Can visualisations express philosophical content? Can visualisations serve as philosophical arguments? In this article, I will discuss—also with the help of a poster—some of the weaknesses of a certain anti-cognitivist line of argument against considering visualisations as philosophical argumentative (...) tools. (shrink)
Although the character of the “lady detective”is a staple of the cozy mystery genre, we contend that there are no great lady detectives to rival Holmes or Poirot. This is not because there are no clever or interesting lady detective characters, but ratherbecause the concept of greatness is sociallyconstructed and, like coolness, depends on public acclaim and perception. We explore the mechanics of genre formation, arguing that the very structure of cozy mysteries precludes female greatness. To create a “great”character,theauthor cannot (...) just endowher with certain attributes; she must actively work to overcome her audience’s tendency to import structures of oppression into the story, and she must wrestle against the conventions of the genre. In doing so, however, authors risk setting their stories in a wholly different genre. (shrink)
Despite being a prevalent theme in popular cinema, revenge has received little dedicated attention within film studies. The majority of research concerning the concept of revenge is located within moral philosophy, but that body of literature has been overlooked by film studies scholars. Philosophers routinely draw on filmic examples to illustrate their discussions of revenge, but those interpretations are commonly hindered by their authors’ inexperience with film studies’ analytical methods. This article seeks to bridge those gaps. The 2010 remake of (...) I Spit on Your Grave is used as a case study to illustrate the benefits of an interdisciplinary engagement with revenge. Philosophical literature on the topic has routinely posited that revenge is either appealing or appalling, and that impasse has stifled conceptual understanding. The interdisciplinary approach employed here elucidates that revenge is simultaneously appealing and appalling; this dualistic nature is evident in I Spit on Your Grave since it is built into the narrative design. I conclude that an interdisciplinary approach to revenge has the potential to advance understanding of revenge-qua-concept both within films studies and philosophy. (shrink)
An analysis of some work by the Oaxaca-based Mexican experimental filmmaker and video artist Bruno Varela via the latter’s reading of the late U.S. philosopher Stanley Cavell, especially Cavell’s 1982 essay “The Fact of Television.” This essay focuses on the aesthetic possibilities of the very constitution of the electronic image, based in Cavell’s understanding of television’s dependence on notions of “switching,” as opposed to “succession,” as well as how those notions play a role in Varela’s understanding of what it is (...) to critique communications media while retaining their communal potential. Audiovisual work by Varela discussed in this essay include Línea 3 (2010-11) and Materia oscura (Dark Matter, 2016). (shrink)
Cinematic Thoughts: Essays on Film and the Philosophy of Film is an anthology of essays Gary Jason published (mainly) between 2012 and 2018. The book has seven parts. Part One consists of essays on propaganda films. The topics include how the Nazi Regime used film as a tool of propaganda, and its use of radio for propaganda. Part Two contains articles on genocide and film. These include two broad surveys of Holocaust documentaries, ranging from those that were done at the (...) end of WWII to Claude Lanzmann’s work. Also included are pieces reviewing the five major propaganda films the Nazi Regime produced aimed at arousing anti-Semitism in the populace leading up to the Holocaust. Part Three of the anthology concerns ethical theory as explored in film. Included here are three essays surveying how egoism is portrayed in classic movies, as well as one showing how Rossian ethical theory can be used to analyze conflicts of loyalty in classic war movies, and pieces illustrating virtue ethics. Part Four includes various articles on the history of cinema. One of the topics raised was whether the American film industry produced better films under the old, allegedly "monopolistic" studio system. Part Five of the anthology contains articles on the aesthetics of film. The topics here include how creativity can be portrayed in film, and why some great actors never win Oscars. Part Six contains pieces on classical liberalism in film, and Part Seven has miscellaneous articles on topics ranging from artists to criminals. (shrink)
This article argues that we ought to reject Gregory Currie’s “Trace Account” of documentary film. According to the Trace Account, a film is a documentary so long the majority of its constitutive images are traces of the film’s subject matter. The argument proceeds by considering how proponents of the Trace Account could respond to Noel Carroll’s charge that their analysis is radically revisionary. I argue that the only responses available are either implausible or show that a fully worked out version (...) of the Trace Account collapses into Carroll’s own, rival definition of documentary. I then consider how advocates of the Trace Account might attempt to rescue the theory by reframing it as an account of a genre or as a theory of evaluation and argue that neither attempt would succeed. Given this, we ought to embrace Carroll’s own account of documentary, according to which a film is documentary if and only if it is a film of presumptive assertion. (shrink)
Precisely, perhaps, because they are so immediately absorbing, narrative films can also be profoundly confusing and disorienting. This fascinating book neither proposes foolproof methods for avoiding confusion; nor does it suggest that disorientation is always a virtue. Instead it argues that the best way to come to terms with our confusion is to look closely at exactly what is confusing us, and why. At the heart of the book are original close readings of four important recent films: David Lynch's INLAND (...) EMPIRE (2006), Leos Carax's Holy Motors (2012), Pedro Costa's Colossal Youth (2006) and Jean-Luc Godard's Goodbye to Language (2014). Clearly written but critically and theoretically bold, The Cinema of Disorientation: Inviting Confusions explores both how we get (or fail to get) our bearings with respect to a film, and what we might discover by (and while) doing so. (shrink)
Les principaux aspects psychologiques et philosophiques détachés du film Solaris réalisé par Andrei Tarkovski, ainsi que les techniques cinématographiques utilisées par le réalisateur pour transmettre ses messages aux spectateurs. Dans « Introduction », je présente brièvement les éléments pertinents de la biographie de Tarkovski et un aperçu du roman Solaris de Stanislav Lem et du film Solaris réalisé par Andrei Tarkovsky. Dans « Technique cinématographique », je parle du rythme spécifique des scènes, du mouvement radical déclenché par Tarkovski dans le (...) cinéma moderne, du rôle des éléments symboliques et iconiques et des affinités avec le fantastique domaine de la littérature russe. Dans « Aspects psychologiques », j'analyse la question de la communication dans une société humaine de l'avenir considéré par Tarkovski comme rigide, de l'obsession de la maison et de l'évolution personnelle de Kris, Hari et de leurs relations. Dans « Aspects philosophiques », le film est analysé à travers la philosophie de l’esprit (dualisme cartésien, réductionnisme et fonctionnalisme), le problème de l’identité personnelle, la théorie des espaces hétérotopiques développée par Michel Foucault et les interprétations sémantiques pouvant être déduites du film. J'analyse également la question de l'identité personnelle à travers la philosophie de Locke. Les « Conclusions » montrent les idées générales de cet essai, à savoir que les tentatives de l'homme pour classer et maintenir des formes d'interaction avec des entités inconnues seront toujours condamnées à l'échec et refléteront une erreur majeure du monde panoptique dans lequel nous vivons. Dans ce cadre d'analyse de la philosophie de l'esprit, le fonctionnalisme semble être le plus intuitif. Solaris est toutefois un film qui commence par une recherche de réponses et vient apporter à ces réponses toute une gamme de questions différentes. -/- SOMMAIRE: -/- Abstract Introduction 1 Technique cinématographique 2. Aspects psychologiques 3. Aspects philosophiques Conclusions Bibliographie Notes -/- DOI: 10.13140/RG.2.2.20367.53929 . (shrink)
From 2009 to 2015, U.S. director, Quentin Tarantino, released three films that were notable for their focus on particular historical events, periods and individuals (Inglorious Basterds 2009; Django Unchained 2012; The Hateful Eight 2015). Together, these films offered a specifically “Tarantinian” rendering of history: rewriting, manipulating and, for some, unethically deploying history for aesthetic effect. With regard to Django Unchained, this article examines how Tarantino’s historical revisionism provides a valuable point of inquiry into the ways in which “history” is depicted (...) on-screen and, more importantly, how depictions of “the past” can prove useful for highlighting underlying contradictions, ambivalences and ambiguities in the “present”. Drawing upon Slavoj Žižek’s Lacanian approach to film analysis, it is argued that through a combination of fantasy, subversion and counterfactual possibility – most notable in the film’s final stand-off between its leading black characters – Tarantino is able to render the Real of U.S. slavery as an ahistorical antagonism. This antagonism highlights the ongoing trauma of these events in the present as well as the use of fantasy to explore their traumatic subject matter. Such historical fictions are not fixed to the past but, via an encounter with the Real, can be used to appraise the present. (shrink)
In “Movies, Narrative and Emotion” there is an attempt to suggest the ways in which a certain form of narrative organization, to which we can call “erotetic narration,” This can be co-ordinated with the emotional address of the motion picture in terms of what can be called “criterial prefocusing.” On this view, the primary way in which the emotions are engaged is character-directed, the protagonist’s goals providing grounds which generate the narrative questions that the movie goes on to answer.
We engage with all representational pictures by seeing things in them. Seeing-in is a distinctive form of visual experience, one in which we are aware of both the marks, projected lights, or whatever that make up the picture (its Design) and what the picture represents (Scene). Some seeing-in is inflected: what we then see in the picture is a scene the properties of which make essential reference to Design. Since cinema involves moving pictures, it too supports seeing-in. But can that (...) seeing-in be inflected? Film is a relatively transparent pictorial medium: properties of the representation other than its content have a relatively low profile in our experience of it. This prevents film from exhibiting the sorts of inflection common in other pictorial media. However, film is certainly not completely transparent. Among the Design properties of which we are aware are temporal properties of the film. Is our experience of cinema inflected by these properties? And, if so, is this one source of the feature some take to constitute cinema’s distinctiveness as an artform, the special relation in which it stands to time? I argue that the answer to both these questions is Yes. (shrink)
The “film as philosophy” (FAP) hypothesis turned into a field if its own right during the 2000s, after S. Mulhall’s On Film (2001). In this work, Mulhall defended that some films philosophize for themselves. This caused controversy. Around the same time of On Film’s release, B. Russell published the article “The philosophical limits of film” (2000). This article had one of the first attacks against FAP, posing some main objections based on metaphilosophical grounds, which were called the “generality” and the (...) “explicitness” objections. These objections made by Russell and by M. Smith are based on the idea that film and philosophy are too different in their purposes or ways of presentation, ideas that are grounded in implicit or explicit conceptions of philosophy. In this chapter, these will be analyzed, as well as some other metaphilosophically grounded objections, as a line of reasoning connecting to attempts of responding to them will be drawn. After doing so, it will be concluded that their metaphilosophical grounds are implausible, and, thus, they are not definite objections against FAP. (shrink)
Nella sua riflessione filosofica sull’immagine filmica Gilles Deleuze sembra aver tradotto nella maniera più immediata, ancorché insolubilmente problematica, la presenza di uno spazio e di un tempo che giocano il proprio ruolo su di una forma passiva di soggettività: è proprio ne L’image- mouvement, infatti, che Deleuze mostra come uno dei passaggi più proficui delle sue osservazioni sul cinema sia proprio la crisi di ciò che egli definisce immagine-azione, a favore, invece, di un’immagine-tempo, o situazione ottica e sonora pura. Per (...) quanto attiene specificamente lo statuto filosofico dell’immagine, si può dire che sia proprio questo passaggio che consente a Deleuze stesso di modulare la sua riflessione riponendo maggiore attenzione all’elemento temporale rispetto invece al movimento — concetto dal quale, ciononostante, l’indagine sul cinema aveva preso abbrivio. (shrink)
У статті розглянуто те, яким чином праця сексуалізується в радянському уявному і яким чином у фільмі «Тіні забутих предків» Сергія Параджанова здійснено культурну операцію дезідентифікації із офіційною радянською трудовою пропагандою, яка ґрунтувалась на прихованій операції ототожнення сексуального і трудового лібідо. Таким чином було включено фільм «Тіні забутих» у генеалогію радянських режимів репрезентації праці, що дало змогу розширити звичний інтерпретативний контекст цього фільму, який зазвичай обмежується питанням національної ідентичності.
In Film, Art and the Third Culture, Murray Smith articulates and defends a naturalized aesthetics of film that exemplifies a “third culture,” integrating the insights and methods of the natural sciences with those of the arts and humanities. By contrast with skeptics who reject the relevance of psychology or neuroscience to the study of film and art, I agree with Smith that we should embrace the third-cultural project. However, I argue that Smith does not go far enough in in developing (...) this project. In defending the contribution of the natural sciences to film aesthetics as traditionally conceived in the arts and humanities, Smith focuses on only one side of the equation, unduly limiting the potential contribution of the arts and humanities to the scientific study of film. Using the example of emotional responses to fiction film, I propose that we adopt a more genuinely integrative approach. (shrink)
Seguindo os passos de Stanley Cavell e de Stephen Mulhall, argumentarei neste artigo que o cinema pode oferecer contribuições genuínas para a filosofia. Para tanto procurarei mostrar que os principais obstáculos para considerar o cinema como capaz de fazer filosofia derivam de pontos de vista bastante restritivos sobre a natureza da racionalidade, da cognição, do significado - e, finalmente, da filosofia e do cinema eles mesmos. Apresentarei alguns desses obstáculos e indicarei formas de removê-los, adotando uma interpretação mais ampla dessas (...) noções. A compreensão resultante será então elaborada em mais detalhes por meio da leitura de um filme específico - Rashomon, de Akira Kurosawa - que considero uma obra exemplar de ficção cinematográfica capaz de refletir filosoficamente sobre a natureza da realidade e de nossa própria existência. Essa leitura será enriquecida por meio de um "interlúdio heideggeriano" que trata da importância dos estados de ânimo para nos sintonizar com o mundo. Finalmente, e com essas considerações em mãos, concluirei minha análise de Rashomon e farei um balanço dos resultados. (shrink)
What is realism in film? Focusing on a test case of HFR high-definition movies, I discuss in this article various types of realism as well as their interrelations. Precision, recessiveness of the medium, transparency, and 'Collapse' are discussed and compared. At the end of the day, I defend the claim that 'less is more' in the sense that more image precision can actually have a negative impact on storytelling.
This thesis explores how contemporary global cinema represents the relationship between humans and nature. Drawing from the philosophy of Georges Bataille, especially his notion of transgression, I argue that certain contemporary films attempt to transgress the limit between human and nonhuman realities. I call these films limit cinema because they operate at the boundary between thought and world: they interrogate the lines between nature and culture and reframe our relationship to aspects of existence in excess of human thought. In taking (...) a film-philosophical approach, I explore not only what philosophy might be able to say about ecological aspects of contemporary film, but also what films can contribute to philosophical discussions of humanity’s relationship with the natural world. To that end, I bring Bataille into conversation with more recent discussions in the humanities that seek less anthropocentric modes of thought, especially film ecocriticism, speculative realism, and other theories associated with the nonhuman turn. I approach the limit between human and nonhuman realities in a number of ways. The films of Apichatpong Weerasethakul and Ben Wheatley are interpreted in relation to a Bataillean understanding of the sacred, in which nonhuman reality is posited as immanent to this world but beyond human understanding. Two films, Jauja and Tectonics, are analysed through the unlikely pairing of speculative realism and apparatus theory; these films demonstrate that the same representational structure can simultaneously implicate us more and less in anthropocentrism. Human subjectivity therefore cannot be cast aside so easily, and I argue that film ecocriticism cannot do without a theory of cinematic subjectivity. I begin to lay out such a theory in relation to Lars von Trier’s Nymphomaniac and Jonathan Glazer’s Under the Skin, arguing that these films evoke subjectivity as an unstable process of turning inside out. I conclude by considering love as a way of relating to the nonhuman, using Grizzly Man and Konelīne: Our Land Beautiful as examples of cinematic expressions of love for nature. Though I argue that it is finally impossible to see beyond our finite human perspectives, limit cinema pushes against the boundaries of thought and encourages an ethical engagement with perspectives beyond the human. (shrink)
Documentary film is that genre of filmmaking that lays bare the fact of all film, which is that it presents "a world past" (Cavell, The World Viewed). This fact of film seems to point to a paradox of time in our experience of movies: we are present at something that has happened, something that is over. But what if we were to take this fact to show that film has the power to place us outside our ordinary, unreflective relation to (...) time? In this essay I examine three pre-cinematic descriptions of relations to time – in Emerson, Thoreau, and Weil – that anticipate the paradox of time inherent in film. I then put that examination to use in a reading of Werner Herzog's Cave of Forgotten Dreams, a film ostensibly about prehistoric cave paintings but whose achievement is its declaration, not to document some past time, but to liberate the present moment. (shrink)
У дослідженні проаналізовано теоретичні джерела і політичні наслідки статті московського кінокритика М. Блеймана «Архаїсти чи новатори?» (1970), яку вважають обґрунтуванням заборони школи українського поетичного кіно як «безперспективного» напряму. Статтю М. Блеймана вміщено в контекст дискусії про поетичне і прозаїчне кіно, яку систематизовано щодо двох підходів: нормативного, який вважає лише один із напрямів кіно релевантним його природі (йому відповідає сполучник «чи»), і плюралістичного, який розглядає обидва напрями як актуалізації різних кінематографічних потенцій згідно з тими завданнями, що ставлять режисери (йому відповідає сполучник (...) «і»). (shrink)
The article is focused on the phenomenon of the early Ukrainian decadent cinema, in particular, in relation to filmings of Volodymyr Vynnychenko’s dramaturgy. One of the brightest examples of ‘film decadence’ in Vynnychenko’s oevre is “The Lie” directed by Vyacheslav Vyskovs’ky in 1918, discovered recently in the film archives. This film displays the principles of ‘ethical symbolism’, ‘dark’ expressionist aesthetics and remains the unique masterpiece of specifically Ukranian film decadence.
This paper focuses on the debate over two central claims regarding cinematic narration: the claim that there are implicit cinematic narrators and the thesis that when we watch movies, we imagine seeing the events and characters in the film fiction. I examine what a consideration of the indeterminate nature of fictional narration, that is, what is specified by the fiction about how we come to imagine the story events, can contribute to the debate on these issues. It is argued that (...) consideration of fictional indeterminacy can be used to show that positing an implicit cinematic narrator is not only unnecessary, but is also incompatible with appreciating the film fiction. While the opposite result is reached regarding the claim about imagined seeing: considerations of indeterminacy suggest that we can suppose, without absurdities, that audiences at the movies sometimes engage in imagined seeing. (shrink)
When I am watching a movie, I perceive on the screen a space, which is united and lived, even if it appears as fragmented and separated from the world in which I live. But is the space of the cinematic frame equivalent or commensurable with the one I see through my own eyes? Are they opposed to each other or do they merge together? The most amazing example of the possible convergence of gaze and frame the film realizes is the (...) phenomenon of vision showing itself in the point-of-view shot. How can I perceive what I see on the screen as the vision of another, and the film itself as someone else’s vision? How does this relationship between the visual field of the film and my own, between my body and the screen, challenge the limits between objective and subjective? Drawing on Merleau-Ponty’s reflections about cinema and visibility, I try to outline the traits of what I would call a reversible point-of-view shot. (shrink)
What is it for a film to be realistic? Of the many answers that have been proposed, I review five: that it is accurate and precise; that is has relatively few prominent formal features; that it is illusionistic; that it is transparent; and that, while plainly a moving picture, it looks to be a photographic recording, not of the actors and sets in fact filmed, but of the events narrated. The number and variety of these options raise a deeper question: (...) what is realism, if these are all to count as species of it? In answer, I articulate a sort of picture we have of realism, not just in film but in representations in general. I then ask how far each of the candidate realisms fares, when compared with that image. (shrink)
Provides an account of philosophy adopted from Being and Time and later works of Heidegger in order to respond to key questions in the film-as-philosophy debate. I follow the school of Stanley Cavell, Robert Sinnerbrink, and Stephen Mulhall in the view that philosophy occurs in film in phenomenological ways that transcend mere argumentative discourse and logical analysis. Some of the views I counter include those of Bruce Russell and Paisley Livingston.
In Stanley Cavell’s ethical universe, no concept is of more moment than that of acknowledgement. In Cavell’s view, the question of acknowledgement is not a matter of choice but is at issue whenever we confront, or are confronted by, others. To acknowledge is to admit or confess or reveal to someone, typically another, those things about oneself and one’s relations to the world and others that one, being human, cannot fail to know – except that “nothing is more human than (...) to deny them”. The question of whether I acknowledge others and whether others acknowledge me and the character, depth or failures of our reciprocal acknowledgement, are central to Cavell’s articulation and exploration of the ethical... (shrink)
The purpose of this paper is to demonstrate that narrative representations can provide knowledge in virtue of their narrativity, regardless of their truth value. I set out the question in section 1, distinguishing narrative cognitivism from aesthetic cognitivism and narrative representations from non-narrative representations. Sections 2 and 3 argue that exemplary narratives can provide lucid phenomenological knowledge, which appears to meet both the epistemic and narrativity criteria for the narrative cognitivist thesis. In section 4, I turn to non-narrative representation, focusing (...) on lyric poetry as presenting a disjunctive objection: either lucid phenomenological knowledge can be reduced to identification and fails to meet the epistemic criterion, or lucid phenomenological knowledge is provided in virtue of aesthetic properties and fails to meet the narrativity criterion. I address both of these problems in sections 5 and 6, and I close with a tentative suggestion as to how my argument for narrative c.. (shrink)
Philosophy of Film: A Contemporary Introduction (Routledge) provides a critical overview of the literature on eleven different issues in the philosophy of film, from "What is Film?" to "Can Film Do Philosophy?" It aims to provide an objective overview of the principal arguments on each side of the issues. The set of issues includes all of the most important topics as well as some that are less well represented in the discipline, such as whether the power of cinema derives from (...) its similarity to dreams. (shrink)
‘Torture porn’ films centre on themes of abduction, imprisonment and suffering. Within the subgenre, protagonists are typically placed under relentless surveillance by their captors. CCTV features in more than 45 contemporary torture-themed films (including Captivity, Hunger, and Torture Room). Security cameras signify a bridging point between the captors’ ability to observe and to control their prey. Founded on power-imbalance, torture porn’s prison-spaces are panoptical. Despite failing to encapsulate contemporary surveillance’s complexities (see Haggerty, 2011), the panopticon remains a dominant paradigm within (...) surveillance studies because it captures essential truths about the psychologies of self-governance and interdependency. This chapter will use torture porn’s panoptical spaces and captor-captive relationships as a springboard into examining those broader philosophical issues regarding selfhood. In the torture-space, cameras signify the control to which captives must submit. Since they are threatened with death, the surveillance dynamic appears to entirely subjugate these prisoners. However, the captive must undertake some agency in the oppression. Much of the captor’s implied threat is enacted by the captives, who brutalise one another to save themselves. The captor’s apparent omniscience is translated into omnipotence only because the captives forsake self-control – opting to engage in violent, contra-social behaviours – out of fear. Thus, it is implied that self-ownership is the bedrock of stable, interdependent sociality. To inspire horror, the opposite is depicted: fractured groups comprised of paranoid, self-invested individuals. By submitting to external pressure, these “weak” individuals empower their tormentor. Captives are not only encouraged to enact their own suppression, but also to internalise culpability for the suffering they undergo. Despite being threatened with erasure, torture porn’s protagonists are spotlighted in these films. Abductees dominate the screen-time, and their suffering drives the narrative forward. Torturers are often motivated solely by their victims’ agony. In many cases, torture is designed specifically for each hyper-individualised captive. These forms of emphasis imply that captives are the stimulus for their own victimisation. The captor’s exaggerated interest in the prisoners is perversely flattering: captives are implied to be worthy of the captor’s maniacal attention, which is reified by the CCTV cameras. In torture porn’s scenarios, it is not immediately clear who has greater control over the individual: the captor or the captive themselves. By dissecting how self-preservation, self-governance, and self-centredness manifest in torture porn, this chapter seeks to examine the dialectical qualities of liberty, interdependency and autonomy. (shrink)
Shadow Philosophy: Plato’s Cave and Cinema is an accessible and exciting new contribution to film-philosophy, which shows that to take film seriously is also to engage with the fundamental questions of philosophy. Nathan Andersen brings Stanley Kubrick’s film A Clockwork Orange into philosophical conversation with Plato’s Republic , comparing their contributions to themes such as the nature of experience and meaning, the character of justice, the contrast between appearance and reality, the importance of art, and the impact of images. At (...) the heart of the book is a novel account of the analogy between Plato’s allegory of the cave and cinema, developed in conjunction with a provocative interpretation of the most powerful image from A Clockwork Orange , in which the lead character is strapped to a chair and forced to watch violent films. Key features of the book include: a comprehensive bibliography of suggested readings on Plato, on film, on philosophy, and on the philosophy of film a list of suggested films that can be explored following the approach in this book, including brief descriptions of each film, and suggestions regarding its philosophical implications a summary of Plato’s Republic , book by book, highlighting both dramatic context and subject matter. Offering a close reading of the controversial classic film A Clockwork Orange , and an introductory account of the central themes of the philosophical classic The Republic , this book will be of interest to both scholars and students of philosophy and film, as well as to readers of Plato and fans of Stanley Kubrick. (shrink)
This paper offers a reading of The Awful Truth in order to meditate further on Stanley Cavell's articulation of the themes of the ordinary and perfectionist marriage as exemplified in the genre of films he calls the Hollywood Comedy of Remarriage in Cavell and . I explore different ways in which this film and the medium of film generally are capable of making the unseen visible: revealing the ordinary that is hidden behind its very familiarity; making available an awareness that (...) we are unseen by the projected reality of film; and, in this film in particular, showing that this divorcing couple - whose marriage and sexual life are essentially off-screen - are as if married all along even while they pursue other love interests. (shrink)
In a number of recent films, Scotland has served as the setting for dramas that could have taken place anywhere. This has occurred in two related ways: First, there are films such as Perfect Sense (2011) and Under the Skin (2013). These films involve storylines that, while they do take place in Scotland, do not require the country as a setting. Second, there are films such as Prometheus (2012),The Dark Knight Rises (2012), Cloud Atlas (2012), and World War Z (2013). (...) These films, while being filmed (at least partly) in Scotland, have plots that do not involve Scotland. Scottish locations, in this second group of movies, act as stand- ins for locations in other cities, or even other worlds. -/- This phenomenon, in which the uniqueness of Scottish locations is deemphasized so that they may act as mere backdrops for the primary action in films, is a relatively new one. It is in sharp contrast to another, more traditional tendency in movie making in which Scottish locations are foregrounded to dramatize myths and stereotypes uniquely Scottish; such as Kailyard, Tartantry or Clydesideism. In this paper I pursue an analysis, drawing on the work of Martin Heidegger, that characterizes this trend as part of a new Scottish myth in the making: the myth of Scotland as nowhere in particular. -/- The myth of Scotland as nowhere in particular takes the countryside and cities of Scotland as raw material for the telling of stories having transcultural interest. In this, Scotland becomes a space or clearing with no particular defining characteristics of its own to distract from the dramas themselves. This allows for the unfolding of narratives that, while they use Scotland as a setting, have little if anything to do with Scotland, and thus appeal to anyone, anywhere. (shrink)
A unique and interdisciplinary collection in which scholars from Philosophy join those from Film Studies, English, and Comparative Literature to explore the nature and limits of love through in-depth reflection on particular works of literature and film.
Three studies are presented to validate the Spanish version of Oliver and Raney’s eudaimonic and hedonic motivations scale. In Study 1, 132 university students watched a dramatic film, filling out the scales to evaluate motivations regarding cinema consumption and reception processes. Eudaimonic motivation was associated with deeper cognitive processes during the reception and stronger identification with the protagonist. Study 2 evaluated the test-retest reliability of the eudaimonic and hedonic motivations scale. In Study 3, statistically significant age differences were observed in (...) hedonic and eudaimonic motivations. Furthermore, convergent correlations were detected between hedonic and eudaimonic motivations and preferences of different film genres. These results allow us to conclude that the Spanish version of the hedonic and eudaimonic motivations scale presents adequate psychometric properties, thus being convergent with those obtained by Oliver and Raney. (shrink)
Resumo Pode um filme ser filosófico ? Para os filósofos analíticos esta questão dá origem àquilo que Paisley Livingston designou por “problema da paráfrase”, um dilema intratável para os adeptos da “tese audaciosa”, segundo a qual alguém pode envolver-se com a filosofia através do cinema. Este artigo defende que a prática corajosa de Stanley Cavell, de sempre procurar abordar a filosofia através do cinema, demonstra a importância de um baluarte sediado na autenticidade das análises conceptuais cinematográficas, que vieram a ser (...) conhecidas como “ideias cinematográficas”. Destacaremos neste artigo, alguns exemplos em Jean Vigo, Nicholas Ray, Robert Bresson e nos filmes de Eric Rohmer, graças à análise penetrante de Stanley Cavell, Victor Perkins e Andrew Klevan. Concluir-se-á, que o designado problema de paráfrase está mal postulado, por causa de uma concepção tímida e reducionista sobre a análise filosófica. Palavras-chave : cinema como filosofia, filosofia através do cinema, Paisley Livingston, problema da paráfrase, Stanley Cavell, tese audaciosaCan a film be philosophical ? The analytic philosophers of film agree that this question raises what Paisley Livingston calls “the problem of paraphrase”, an intractable dilemma for the adherents of the “bold thesis” according to which one can indeed engage philosophy through film. This article maintains that the courageous practice of Stanley Cavell, one who always sought to address philosophy through film, demonstrates the significance of a bulwark of authentic cinematographic conceptual analyses that would come to be known as “cinematographic ideas”. Highlighted below are some examples in Jean Vigo’s, Nicholas Ray’s, Robert Bresson’s and Eric Rohmer’s films thanks to the penetrating analysis of Stanley Cavell, Victor Perkins and Andrew Klevan. It follows that the so-called problem of paraphrase is ill-posed because of a reductionist and timid conception of philosophical analysis. Keywords : bold thesis, film as philosophy, Paisley Livingston, philosophy through film, problem of paraphrase, Stanley Cavell. (shrink)
In this paper I examine the history and style of the real-life skinhead subculture in order to clarify its nature and to highlight its preoccupation with the ideal of "authenticity." I then use the insights thus gained in order to understand why it is that the skinhead characters in such fictional films as Romper Stomper, American History X and The Believer are, despite their neo-Nazism, granted a sympathetic depiction.
Resumo Neste artigo, defender-se-á uma interpretação do filme A Time to Kill, como sendo uma narrativa cinematográfica falível, mesmo sem a presença de um narrador. Neste texto, assume-se, que uma narrativa falível resulta de um defeito estético e ético do filme. Deste modo, a estrutura estética do filme representa a intenção do realizador em contar a sua versão da história, influenciando assim o seu significado e efeito empático. Com o evoluir da narrativa cinematográfica, as regras de inferência tornam-se cada vez (...) mais complexas. Ainda assim, a convenção cinematográfica estabelece um contexto e define limites identificadores para a sua interpretação. Uma história mal contada inibe a reconstrução imaginativa do espectador, no que diz respeito às motivações das personagens e da causalidade narrativa. Portanto, a qualidade narrativa é essencial para o raciocínio narrativo e empatia estética. Se a narrativa oferece uma compreensão do mundo e de outras pessoas, que de outra forma seriam inacessíveis, e se a forma ou o estilo da narrativa determinam a sua eficácia, então, as formas assumidas pelas nossas histórias têm consequências epistemológicas. Palavras-chave : estética, ética, identificação, narrativa falível, narrativa, raçaIn this paper, I argue for an interpretation of A Time to Kill as an unreliable, yet narrator-less, cinematic narrative. In my view, unreliable narration is an aesthetic and ethical flaw of the film rather than of the narrator. Thus, the film’s aesthetic structure represents the director’s storytelling intentions, and influences its meaning and empathic affect. As cinematic narrative evolves, rules of inference become increasingly complex. Still, filmic convention establishes a context and sets identifiable boundaries for interpretation. A poorly told story inhibits the viewer’s imaginative reconstruction of narrative causation and characters’ motives. Thus, narrative quality is essential to narrative reasoning and aesthetic empathy. If narrative provides an understanding of the world and other people that is otherwise inaccessible, and if the form or style of narrative determines its effectiveness, then the forms our stories take have epistemological consequences. Keywords : aesthetics, ethics, identification, narrative, race, unreliable narrative. (shrink)
Offers an interpretation of Pedro Almodovar's masterpiece, arguing that viewers often mistakenly ignore the obsessiveness of Marco - its seemingly more well-adjusted protagonist - and that an analysis of Marco's development is key to appreciating the film's construction.