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Film Studies Introduction.

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Presentation on theme: "Film Studies Introduction."— Presentation transcript:

1 Film Studies Introduction

2 Table of Contents 1. What is Realism and what is Formalism?
2. The Lumiére Brothers’ Workers Leaving the Factory and George Méliès’ A Trip to the Moon 3. Realism vs. Formalism 4. Problems of Realism and Formalism

3 What is Realism? 1. Dictionary definition
(a) ‘a style of painting and sculpture that seeks to represent the familiar or typical in real life, rather than an idealized, formalized, or romantic interpretation of it’ Collins English Dictionary (b) ‘… the style of art and literature in which everything is shown or described as it really is in life.’ Longman American Dictionary

4 What is Realism? (c) ‘… in the arts, the accurate, detailed, unembellished depiction of nature or of contemporary life. Realism rejects imaginative idealization in favour of a close observation of outward appearances.’ Encyclopaedia Britannica

5 What is Realism? 1. Subjects and materials (content)
-- the familiar or typical in our daily life Superman cartoon in the 1940s (Fleisher Studio)

6 Daily Life Familiar Contents
Frederick Wiseman’s High School (1968) Ken Loach’s It’s a Free World (job hunting)

7 Daily Life Familiar Contents
Alan J. Pakura’s All the President’s Men (Office Mike Leigh’s All or Nothing (Thpical British home)

8 Daily Life Familiar Contents
Juzo Itami’s Supermarket Woman (1996) (Japanese super- Market) Hirokazu Kore-eda’s Nobody Knows (2004) (Tokyo neighbourhood)

9 What is Realism? 2. The way in which such a subject and material is represented (method) - non-idealized, non-formalized, un-romantic, and unembellished rendition of outward appearance as faithfully as possible. -- MIMESIS (Gk. the imitative representation of nature and human behaviour) The representation of the familiar or typical in mimetic manners in literature and visual arts.

10 Boxer of Quirinal, Bronze copy of a Hellenistic Greek sculpture

11 Details

12 Old Greek Woman (C 400 BC)

13 Idealized beauty Discus Thrower Venus of Milo

14 Caravaggio, Cardsharps (c 1594-5)

15 Caravaggio, Fortune-Teller (c 1598-9)

16 Caravaggio, The Inspiration of St. Matthew

17 Johannes Vermeer, Young Woman with a Water Pitcher (c 1664-5)

18 Johannes Vermeer, Woman Reading a Letter

19 Jean-Baptiste-Simeon Chardin, Back to the Market (1739)

20 Gustav Courbet, Bonjour, Monsieur Courbet (1854)

21 William Bliss Barker’s Fallen Monarchs (1859)

22 Albert Charpin’s Woman with Lambs (1920)

23 What is Realism? Definition in film studies
‘A style of filmmaking that attempts to represent the look of objective reality as it’s commonly perceived.’

24 What is Formalism? Dictionary definition
‘… scrupulous or excessive adherence to outward form at the expense of inner reality’

25 Jackson Pollock, No. 5 (1948)

26 Joseph Albers, Homage to Square (1965)

27 Piet Mondrian, Composition No. 10 (1939-42)

28 What is Formalism? Definition in film studies
‘A style of filmmaking in which aesthetic forms take precedence over the subject matter as content. Time and space as ordinarily perceived are often distorted. For Formalism, film is an art because its properties are exploited to express filmmakers’ own vision’

29 Lumière’s Films Workers Leaving the Factory (1895)
Actualités (actualities) - Recording an everyday event with a stationary camera placed at eye level without any editing Lumiere Brothers’ Sortie de l’usine Lumier a Lyon

30 Lumière’s Films Arrival of a Train at the Ciotat station (1985)
- filmed record of the arrival of a train

31 Lumière’s Films Auguste and Louis Lumière
Representation of the look of reality as it is commonly perceived

32 Georges Méliès’ Films A Trip to the Moon (Le Voyage dans la lune, 1902) A fantasy about rocket journey to the moon. Adherence to film forms – special effects and surprising images Ordinary time and space distorted

33 Georges Méliès’ Films Georges Méliès
A stage magician at Theatre Robert-Houdin turned filmmaker. The first innovator in filmmaking. The inventor of seminal film tricks

34 Georges Méliès’ Films Visual tricks in cinema
Jump cut – a scene is cut in the middle of action Double exposure – two images are superimposed on the same piece of film Multiple images – the screen divided into several separate images Priority given to the display of (aesthetic) forms and visual effects over the representation faithful to reality. Expression of the filmmaker’s own vision disregarding what it may be in reality.

35 Realism vs. Formalism Film realism - the Lumière tendencies
Recording reality without changing it Film formalism - the Méliès tendencies Recreating and presenting forms different from seen in reality

36 Lumiére-Melies Chart (Realism) (Formalism) LUMIERE MELIES
The Blair Witch Project Exorcist Full Monty The Gold Rush Documentary Fantasy

37 Realism / Lumière Tendencies
The Blair Witch Project (1999) - a low-budget horror film made as if amateur documentary footage were pieced together. Three students who is making a documentary film on a legend locally known as Blair Witch go missing.

38 Realism / Lumière Tendencies
The viewer is told that they were never found but one year later their camera and films were discovered. The viewer watch the ‘discovered’ footage. The Blair Witch Project Part 1

39 Formalism / Méliès Tendencies
The Exorcist (1973) by William Friedkin A cult film dealing with the demonic possession of a girl and her mother’s desperate attempt to win her back through exorcism conducted by two priests. The Exorcist

40 Realism / Lumière Tendencies
Full Monty (1997) by Peter Cattaneo: a British comedy about six unemployed men trying to form a male striptease group to support themselves and their families.

41 Formalism / Méliès Tendencies
Gold Rush (1925) by Charlie Chaplin: a silent comedy about a trump going to the Yukon to take part in the Klondike Gold Rush but being stranded in a cabin by snow storm. The Gold Rush

42 Problems of Film Realism
Film as representation of reality What is filmed is not reality itself but its image A person who appears on the screen is not herself but her image. An object who can be seen on the screen is not itself but its image.

43 Problems of Film Realism
René Magritte’s painting of Ceci n’est pas une pipe (This is not a pipe) The picture is not the pipe itself, though it is life-like, but its image.

44 McLuhan and Annie Hall Real Marshall Mcluhan appears in Woody Allen’s Annie Hall In the film, he is only the image of Mcluhan and not himself

45 Problems of Film Realism
A film re-presents objects and people Or re-traces (an event); re-calls (an event); re-produce (reality), re-enact (an event/reality); re-fer to (an event / reality), re-build (reality); re-construct (reality): re-stage (reality / an event) Film is realization in ‘second-time’; thus actions are suffixed with -re; spatially and temporally different from what it shows.

46 Problems of Film Formalism
Even fantasy, fantastic images, and forms are constructed on our perception of reality. It is impossible to create a world totally detached from reality.

47 Problems of Film Formalism
Even a creature from Mars have two eyes, a nose, a mouth, two arms, fingers, and two legs.

48 Coexistence and Interaction
Realism and formalism coexist and interact Every film is constructed by a dialectic process of film realism and film formalism: of mimicking and changing reality

49 Blade Runner Ridley Scott’s SF film, Blade Runner was inspired by futuristic or postmodern city- scape of Osaka

50 Blade Runner

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