11film Studies


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  • 11film Studies

    1. 1. Film Studies Week Eleven Our Postmodern (Po-Mo) Condition. Auteurs: Matt Groenig and David Lynch “ Film is its own language, an entity. It should not be translated back into words.” — David Lynch
    2. 2. Use of the word “Auteur.” Anybody have trouble weaving “auteur” into a sentence? Here are some usage examples … The auteur that I will be studying in this essay … With …’s auteurial skills in evidence … An auteurist case study … Auteurism, also known as the auteur theory, … When in doubt, substitute the word author as in The authorship of the body of work … The authorial signature of … If you’re stuggling with “Mise-en-scene,” you may use “visual style.”
    3. 3. Questions for Hard Core Logo . Does this film express characteristics of National Cinema? Morality, Passion, Survival, Weird Sex, Snowscapes, Vast Landscapes, Survival guilt, Orphans, Fragmented narratives, Pluralism, Passive heroes, Potent women, Outsider stance. Plus … being “Rooted in Realism.” (watch for doco-style camera work, especially “long takes.”) Homage to French Cinema? Other Canadian references? How is Hard Core Logo also a reflection of auteurism? Structure: Parallel stories? What links them? Hint, sound motif. Who delivers the story “thesis moment”? Beauty/meaning in details. Aesthetics: Camera kinetics? Production/sound design? Other?
    4. 4. A reality check of our place in time . Let’s take a power-march through the history of art and media since the Renaissance.
    5. 5. The Renaissance and Baroque . The Annuncion, 15th Century, Leonard da Vinci Centred in Italy. Leonardo was the ultimate Renaissance man. The aim of his pursuits was the discovery of nature’s eternal laws. His paintings go far beyond mere recounting of bible stories. Combine perfect harmony balance and spatial illusion -- model of psychological drama revealed by artistic genius.
    6. 6. Neoclassicists and Romantics . Death of Marat, 18th Century, Jacques Louis David Pays homage to the revolutionary hero and martyr Marat -- assasinated in his bath. Propaganda in the real world of historical events. Centred in Paris. Clarity of form, perfectly modelled drapery, Precision of sculpture. Picture is a dramatic and impressive vehicle for a message. 18th century was also the Age of Enlightenment (Reason). Using universal values “metanarratives” of science, reason and logic would rid them of myths and holy ideals that kept humanity from progressing. Eg Thomas Hobbes, Francis Bacon, Karl Marx.
    7. 7. Impressionists . Waterlilies, 19th Century, Claude Monet Transition period. Broke up objects. Painting with dabs of colour rather than continuous brush strokes. Suggests a decomposition of solids into fragments of light. ART ! AHEAD of the curve.
    8. 8. Modern Art -- Cubism . Picasso and Braque Like Nietzche, skeptical of the Enlightenment pretenses that had caused wars and the Holocaust. Art for Art’s sake, “Make it new” looking for eternal values. Further fragmentation.
    9. 9. The Postmodern Condition . Marilyn Three Times, and Campbell Soup Can, Andy Warhol, 1968 In the Postmodern era, icons, images, copies -- simulations -- bear no resemblance to reality. The Simulation, the copy, becomes the real! “SIMULACRA” Commodification producing a new order. ART, POLITICS, MEDIA, ALL MIXED UP TOGETHER.
    10. 10. Po-Mo Condition . Madonna, the Material Girl All surface, all put on. All simulation, simulacrum. She knows she lives in an age of hype, hyperreality. Deliberately trivial, shallow, formulaic. “ Deconstructs essentialist notions of male/female, highart/pop art, virgin/whore.”( P owell)
    11. 11. Post-Theory <ul><li>Po-Mo “Post-Theory” draws upon three important lines of inquiry: </li></ul><ul><li>Cognitive psychology </li></ul><ul><li>Archival Research, and </li></ul><ul><li>Reception Theory </li></ul><ul><li>Cognitive psychology deals with the activities of the mind involved in perception and comprehension. Archival research investigates history and industry. research) Reception theory aims at finding out more about how actual audiences respond to movies. Henry Jenkins for example stresses the way that fans engage in texts and rework their own critical variations. </li></ul><ul><li>Pay attention to films as PoMo work. </li></ul>
    12. 12. A Marshall McLuhan Moment From Understanding Media, 1964 In the electric age we wear all mankind as our skin . (47) McLuhan said the electric media would cause a social and political &quot;implosion,&quot; raising &quot;human awareness of responsibility to an intense degree.” &quot; Environments are not passive wrappings but active processes. ” “ The Medium is the Message.” What theoretical perspective looks at the media phenomena as cultural messenger? Great Canadians
    13. 13. A Jean-Francois Lyotard Moment <ul><li>In 1984 he described the POSTMODERN CONDITION as a gradual fading of progressive modernity marked by key cultural, social and technological changes. These include: </li></ul><ul><li>Commodification producing a new order. ART, POLITICS, MEDIA, ALL MIXED UP TOGETHER. </li></ul><ul><li>The shift to a post-industrial economic sphere based on consumption, information and services rather than production. </li></ul><ul><li>The development of globalized social life with transport and communications technologies enabling shrinkage of time and space and the tranformation of global culture. </li></ul>Great Canadians
    14. 14. Po-Mo Revelations “ The erosion of the older distinction between high culture and so-called mass or popular culture.” Our advertising is fed by postmodernism in all the arts and is inconceivable without it.” Pastiche and parody of multiple styles: old forms of &quot;content&quot; become mere “styles.” Stylistic masks, image styles, without present content: the meaning is in the mimicry.
    15. 15. Po-Mo Revelations as seen in the Simpsons <ul><li>Modern </li></ul><ul><li>Idea of the family as central unit of social order. </li></ul><ul><li>Faith in “Depth” (meaning, value, content, the signified) over “Surface” (appearances, the superficial, the signifier). </li></ul><ul><li>Dichotomy of High and Low Culture . Imposed consensus that high culture is normative and authoritative, the ground of value and discrimination </li></ul><ul><li>Faith in “Real” beyond media. </li></ul><ul><li>Post-Modern </li></ul><ul><li>Alternative family units, exposure of repressed homosexual realities. </li></ul><ul><li>Attention to play of surfaces, images signifiers without concern for “Depth.” </li></ul><ul><li>Distruption of the dominance of high culture by popular culture. New value of pop culture, hybrid cultural forms cancel “high/low” categories. </li></ul><ul><li>“ As seen on TV” more powerful than unmediated experience. </li></ul><ul><li>Intertextual reference, self referencing, and pastiche. </li></ul>
    16. 16. THE SIMPSONS (1989 - ??? TV Series) EPISODE: Rosebud from Season Five. Created by: Matt Groening  Intertextual References Include (ref: http://www.snpp.com/episodes/1F01.html) &quot;Citizen Kane&quot; - Opening music and camera shot - the crate of unbreakable snow globes {dmw} - title is reference to the name of the sled Kane lost for ill- gotten power {rl} &quot;Wizard of Oz&quot;- Burns' guards and their chant Marilyn Monroe - Smithers' birthday fantasy (similar to Marilyn, &quot;Happy Birthday, Mr. President&quot; to JFK) - slide of Burns in skirt over grate (same shot from Marilyn's &quot;Seven Year Itch&quot;) John Glenn's space mission {ddg} - the people of Perth left their lights on as a signal to Glenn &quot;Robocop&quot;, &quot;Frankenstein&quot; {rc} - Robot present for Burns- &quot;No! Bear want to live...&quot; &quot;Conan the Barbarian&quot; - Homer turning the Wheel of Pain &quot;The Mind's Eye&quot; {rl} - scene with the aquarium, with Jan Hammer-esque music &quot;Soul Train&quot; {rl} - &quot;Soul Mass Transit System&quot; &quot;Planet of the Apes&quot; - the scene from 1,000,000 A.D.
    17. 17. David Lynch Mulholland Dr. (2001) Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me (1992) ... aka Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me (France) &quot;Twin Peaks” TV Series &quot;American Chronicles&quot; (1990) TV Series Wild at Heart (1990) ... aka David Lynch's Wild at Heart (USA) Blue Velvet (1986) Dune (1984) The Elephant Man (1980) Eraserhead (1977)
    18. 18. “ Film is its own language, an entity. It should not be translated back into words.” — David Lynch Postmodern Theory and Mulholland Dr. Cognition: Try to interpret the opaque storylines by thinking of reality as other than a construct of linear time. (Consider holistic time/fragmented reality.) Archival Research: How might David Lynch’s television success affected this project? Originally filmed in 1999 on a budget of $8 million as a made-for-TV pilot, new scenes were filmed one year later on a $7 million budget given by the French film studio Studio Canal to wrap up the open ending which had been left unresolved in the original version so that a TV series could follow. imdb Reception Theory: Fan clubs? Critical variations? Is there a “wrong” way to interpret the meaning? Pedagogy through dialogue.
    19. 19. Mulholland Dr. (David Lynch, 2001) 2 hours 25 minutes Genre: Drama / Mystery / Thriller (more) Tagline: A Love Story In The City Of Dreams (more) Plot Outline: After a car wreck on the winding Mulholland Dr. renders a woman amnesic, she and a perky Hollywood-hopeful search for clues and answers across Los Angeles in a twisting venture beyond dreams and reality. (more) (view trailer) Naomi Watts .... Betty Elms/Diane Selwyn Laura Harring .... Rita (as Laura Elena Harring) Ann Miller .... Catherine 'Coco' Lenoix Dan Hedaya .... Vincenzo Castigliane