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. Andre Bazin & Italian Neorealism. . Siefried Kracauer (1889-1966) CINEMATIC REALISM : Philosophy n Critic of “modernity” (Frankfurt School) n Human.

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Presentation on theme: ". Andre Bazin & Italian Neorealism. . Siefried Kracauer (1889-1966) CINEMATIC REALISM : Philosophy n Critic of “modernity” (Frankfurt School) n Human."— Presentation transcript:

1 . Andre Bazin & Italian Neorealism

2 . Siefried Kracauer ( ) CINEMATIC REALISM : Philosophy n Critic of “modernity” (Frankfurt School) n Human condition characterized by alienation n Mass culture/society manipulates individuals n Materialistic values have replaced religion, metaphysical, romantic convictions, resulting in disenchantment n People live distracted lives n Film as a “redemptive” experience that can show man damaged condition of modernity and help him transcend materialism

3 . Siefried Kracauer ( ) CINEMATIC REALISM n Foreshadowed and predicted dehumanizing power of mass media n “Mass ornaments”--film, military parades and sporting events n “Real” world of the individual desubstantiated by spectacle and empty rituals n Film must “reengage” individual with nature and the Kantian real world

4 . Andre Bazin ( ) n Views cinema as a “redemptive” art n The role of cinema is to help man in his search for truth and understanding in an ambiguous and uncertain world n Man can transcend alienation and modernity n Film can be a religious experience n “Love” and “state of grace”

5 . Andre Bazin ( ) Bergson’s concept of “creative evolution” n Close experiential scrutiny reveals deep structures/meanings behind phenomena n Under scrutiny of inquiry [artistic analysis] these deep structures are brought into the light n Cinema and photography are media that an artist can utilize to review the deeper meanings behind the phenomena of existence

6 . Andre Bazin ( ) n We know that under the image revealed there is another which is truer to reality and under this image still another and yet again still another under this last one, right down to the true image of reality, absolute, mysterious, which no one will ever see.

7 . Andre Bazin ( ) n Film image “embalms” time & wrenches phenomena from the flux of life n Symbolic power of cinematic imagery combined with empirical density of cinematic realism n The spirit behind the “real” object n The “long hard gaze” n Disliked over-expressive, over-ornamental, or overuse of montage

8 . Andre Bazin ( ) n “Montage...chops the world up into little fragments, and disturbs the natural unity in people and things.”

9 . Andre Bazin ( ) n “German expressionism did violence to the image by ways of sets and lighting.”

10 . Andre Bazin ( ) n Liked films that focused on everyday psychological experience F Italian neorealism (The Bicyle Thief) n Disliked modernist, expressionistic n Disliked films that imposed a political ideology on the viewer n Long takes, of surrounding environment n Impact of environment on people (French determinism)

11 . Andre Bazin ( ) n Francois Truffaut n Erich von Stroheim n Roberto Rossellini n Vittorio De Sica n Robert Bresson n Jean Renoir n Orson Welles n William Wyler

12 . Andre Bazin ( ) Depth of focus n Respect for the continuity of dramatic space and the flow of time n Composition in depth “Dramatic effects for which we had formerly relied on montage were created out of the movements of the actors within a fixed framework.” n Ambiguity of expression closer to reality; viewer must choose

13 . Cinematic Realism & Marxism (1930-present) n Film as a reactionary medium n Expose the shallowness of modern capitalistic society n Real-life problems of the common man n Poverty, crime, social injustice common themes n Italian Neorealism n British Social Realism

14 . Italian Neorealism ( s) HISTORICAL BACKGROUND n : Fascists controlled cinema (founded Cinecitta--largest studio in Europe) n Propaganda films n After WWII, Socialists and Communists in government tolerated Neorealism’s left-wing ideology (former resistance movement) n Economy in shambles n Cost of studio production, film, lighting, etc. became prohibitive n Reflected desire for social reform

15 . Italian Neorealism ( s) n Response to artificiality of cinema of the Fascist period n Influenced by French poetic realism and American literary naturalism (e.g., Hemingway) n Experiences of poor and socially marginalized n “Slice of life”; things and facts in time and place (versimo) n Ambivalence of everyday experience n Some took strong social political stance n Marxist, with a hopeful, humanistic dimension

16 . Italian Neorealism ( s) CHARACTERISTICS n On-location shooting n Long takes n Natural light n Medium and long shots n Non-professional actors n Working class protagonists n Environment as important as actors

17 . Italian Neorealism ( s) CESARE ZAVATTINI Three basics tenets of neorealism 1.Portray real or everyday people, using nonprofessional actors in real settings 2.Examine socially significant themes 3.Promote the “organic” development of situations--the “real flow of life”--in which complications are rarely resolved

18 . Italian Neorealism ( s) CESARE ZAVATTINI “Some Ideas on the Cinema” (1953) 1.Portray real or everyday people, using nonprofessional actors in real settings 2.Examine socially significant themes 3.Promote the “organic” development of situations--the “real flow of life”--in which complications are rarely resolved

19 . Italian Neorealism ( s) CESARE ZAVATTINI n “Identification with the common man in the crowd.” n “Take dialogue and actors from the street.” n “Reality in American films is unnaturally filtered.”

20 . Italian Neorealism ( s) CESARE ZAVATTINI n “The world goes on getting worse because we are not truly aware of reality.” n The job of the director is to “observe reality, and not extract fictions from it.” n “The frequent habit of identifying oneself with fictional characters will become very dangerous.”

21 . Italian Neorealism ( s) CESARE ZAVATTINI n “The world goes on getting worse because we are not truly aware of reality.” n The job of the director is to “observe reality, and not extract fictions from it.” n “The frequent habit of identifying oneself with fictional characters will become very dangerous.”

22 . Italian Neorealism ( s) n Criticized for negative depiction of Italy n Lack of positive heroes n Negative displays of human flesh n Catholic Church: “forbidden for believers”

23 . Italian Neorealism ( s) n Not the most popular cinema of the times in Italy n People didn’t want to be reminded of problems n Hollywood and “capitalist” system of filmmaking an overpowering force n BUT the movement did influence the French New Wave, Hollywood and TV

24 . Italian Neorealism ( s) n Roberto Rossellini n Luchino Visconti n Guisippe DeSantis n Giovanni Verga n Vittorio De Sica n Federico Fellini n Michelangelo Antonioni n Bernardo Bertolucci n Francesco Rosi


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