Nordic Journal of Aesthetics 23 (46):78-95 (2013)
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Is cinematicity a virtue in film? Is lack of cinematicity a defect? Berys Gaut thinks so. He claims that cinematicity is a pro tanto virtue in film. I disagree. I argue that the term “cinematic” principally refers to some cluster of characteristics found in films featuring the following: expansive scenery, extreme depth of field, high camera positioning, and elaborate tracking shots. We often use the word as a term of praise. And we are likely right to do so. We are right if we mean that the film does well what movies often do well. We are wrong if we mean that the film is good for doing what is merely distinctive of film. This issue has important implications for understanding the role of the medium in artistic evaluation. I argue that we should reject Gaut’s claim because it entails an implausibly strong medium specificity thesis

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Aaron Smuts
Rhode Island College

References found in this work

Categories of Art.Kendall L. Walton - 1970 - Philosophical Review 79 (3):334-367.
The Right and the Good.W. D. Ross - 1930 - International Journal of Ethics 41 (3):343-351.
A Philosophy of Cinematic Art.Berys Gaut - 2010 - Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Aesthetics From Classical Greece to the Present: A Short History.Stephen C. Pepper - 1966 - Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 25 (2):213-215.

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