Auteur Theory

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A2 Media and Film Studies

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Auteur Theory

  1. 1. Auteur theory Auteur film<br />Director Is the ‘author’ not the writer <br />Director’s style is distinctive and recognizable<br />Clear influence over the look, feel and language of the film<br />Origins in French New Wave Cinema of the 1960s <br /> e.g. Truffaut Chabrol & Godard<br />Auteur films tend to be more stylistically sophisticated and distinctive in terms of mise-en-scene.<br />In an industry which is highly collaborative, the auteur-director has almost complete control over the film-making process <br />Favours style over content; artistic expression over commercialism<br />
  2. 2. Andrew Sarris:<br />The strong director imposes his own personality on a film; the weak director allows the personalities of others to run rampant.<br />Hitchcock, Kubrick, Orson Welles, Nicholas Roeg , Coen brothers are among the many who could be considered to be ‘auteur’-directors.<br />Arguably, every director who has made a non-mainstream film could be defined as an ‘auteur’.<br />A real auteur however is one who manages to combine commercial success with artistic merit<br />
  3. 3. Criticisms of auteur theory<br />Every director has his/her own style of film-making; so every director could be considered an auteur<br />Ignores the collaborative nature of film <br />In favour of auteur theory<br />successful auteur-directors can stand up to producers and studio executives in the face of real commercial pressures to make genre films whose formula has been tried and tested in the market-place <br />
  4. 4. Task<br />Watch any films by Tim Burton<br />To what extent can they be described as ‘auteur’ films<br />Look at: <br />Distinctive style <br />similar themes e.g. the misfit/ outsider <br />Other recurring elements (actors, music etc) <br />Gothic aspects<br />Use of animation<br />

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