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Film's ability to retranscribe the real by offering a new image of it is perhaps the most immanent characteristic of the medium, affirming its unique potential in reproduction of the real and reality. However, what does actually mean, when we speak about retranscription of the real and reality in reference to representation and politics?
Where should one begin, if one’s ambition is to point to a certain cinematographic event? How to go about discussing specific cases, where the potential power of cinema to cut through reality, constructed in terms of representation, resorting to the surplus of representation it produces by itself, comes to the fore?
In order to distinguish various film-worlds among themselves and from our intersubjective, shared reality I propose to introduce two parameters: warpedness and enfoldednes. The various ratios between these two parameters serve to create what I call »the film-world map«. The time-imageʼs embeddedness within the temporal dimension is what I mean by strong enfoldedness. A world that is enfolded is a layer hidden within the intersubjective world and has to do with the manifestation of the virtual aspects of the corresponding reality, its intensity.
If there is a question of reality in cinema, it must be articulated as a question of reality of reality itself. In other words, it is a question of »Bühnentauglichkeit« of reality. Is the idea of reality even applicable to the film medium? Is a cinematic event meant to fabricate a pure instance of reality in a suite without stitches, as Bazin used to say, or is there something else we have to take into consideration when talking about the film medium.
The alternation between dream and awake states creates a contemplative fictional life as an intermediate position. Dreams are subjective and volatile worlds of thought, which can be experienced as non-intersubjective and immersive. There are many analogies between non-mimetic forms of artistic expression and dreams. And indeed there are artistic possibilities of depictions of dream experience (Kreuzer 2014). Van de Castle pointed on the similarity between the dreams and films as follows.
Gilles Deleuze claimed that modern thought is “born of the failure of representation”. This failure, however, is not the failure of the act of representation, unable to produce the image of reality. It is reality itself that is constructed according to the principles of representation. The task of a modern philosopher is therefore to trace the events in which the forces at work beneath the representational construction of reality come to the fore. In cinema, this reveals “a world of universal variation, of universal undulation, universal rippling”.
The establishment of a relation between the phenomenology of Edmund Husserl and cinema may seem strange at first, since the German philosopher himself has never explicitly wrote about the subject. And yet, as we would like to show, his philosophy provides us an original approach.
Ordinarily, movement in the film image is relative movement, i.e. it is the result of distinct objects changing their position. On the other hand, film images may as well be limited to vague areas in a constant process of blurry transformation without any clear-cut moving objects discernible. What manifests itself in these instances can be described as absolute movement. It is directors such as Germaine Dulac, Dziga Vertov or Willy Zielke that first use documentary sequences to depict absolute movement during the 1920s and 30s.
In this presentation, I want to further my general interest in the capacity of films to engage reflectively with issues of interest to philosophers in ways analogous to those employed by philosophers. My particular focus on this occasion will be the director Brad Bird, and more specifically three of his films: the Incredibles (2004), Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol (2011), and Tomorrowland: A World Beyond (2015).
The main subject of our inquiry are alternative notions of queer temporality that we try to connect to feminist cinematography and New Queer Cinema (NQC) in two ways. The first involves temporal ruptures or temporal shifts in specific films; ruptures that can be described as queer and open up potentials for alternative queer temporalities which in turn offer paths for a dynamic relationality, alternative (queer) transmissions and affective cinema. The second way offers a wider perspective: how queer temporality connects with the emergence of NQC.
During ten minutes two young women ride in a cable car from the top of a Nepalese Temple to the valley. No cut interrupts the travel downhill. No words, only dramatic facial expressions, gestures and the rattle of the cable car followed by the rhythmic buzz of the 16mm camera. Only from the second half they start to speak.
In her 1959 essay »The Sublime and the Good«, British moral philosopher Iris Murdoch discusses the role that art can play in the acceptance of one’s consciousness as inherently limited. Murdoch used the term »unselfing« for this process, which for her is the basis of developing moral vision. Her moral realism is founded on a commitment to becoming less egocentric, and this involves effort and attention to others as individuals.
The films of Lars von Trier have often been seen in accord with his performative efforts or been read referring to his own reading manuals (Dogma rules, etc.). This speech will aesthetically explore what I refer to as Trier's production of »diagrams of affect«. In order to theoretically scrutinize his methods, Gilles Deleuze’s philosophy on film and affect as well as his cooperation with Félix Guattari on haptic and striated space, the refrain, the diagram, faceality and microperception will be applied.
Werner Herzog made both documentary and fictional films, but as he remarked in several interviews, his documentaries are completely fictional and his fictional films are documentary. Herzog in both types of his films constructs reality for filming. They are true stories, but here truth is not something to discover. We can say, he transforms the imagination into the reality. Herzog follows his imagination, but making movie out of the imagination means realizing the imagination. The film maker is not a passive sensor before the reality, but he makes the reality.
The starting point of my paper is a concrete ‚event’ at the turning point in the pacific war, namely the raising of the US-American flag on the Japanese island Iwo Jima on February 23, 1945. For a discussion of fiction and document(ary) the circumstances of the ‘event’ itself as well as a multiplicity of its visual and multimodal representations are particularly fruitful. The ‘event’ – if one really wants to use the singular – practically happened twice on the same day: the smaller first flag was replaced a few hours later through a second bigger flag.
The villains in Christopher Nolans »Dark Night Trilogy« are not simply criminals they are real terrorists. In his Batman films Nolan examines the threat of terrorism and its philosophical implications. Ever since the end of the Cold War and 9/11 terrorism is the most dangerous threat for worldwide civilizations. Still we have a lack in terms to describe its implications. Nolan seems to be aware of this problem and asks what it means when terror strikes our familiar life.
There is a century old tradition of defining documentary in philosophical terms. Yet, this tradition seems to miss the most intelligible (yet, conspicuously evasive) aspect of documentary praxis: its conceptual entanglement with philosophy itself.
In his »Believing is Seeing« (2011), Morris addresses the claim made by Susan Sontag (»Regarding the Pain of Others« 2004) that Roger Fenton’s famous photograph »In the Valley of the Shadow of Death« is staged. Sontag’s accusation is that the fact the cannonballs shown strewn across the road were placed there by Fenton amounts to a distortion of the truth. For Morris, this is irrelevant – Fenton was merely recreating the earlier state of affairs before the road was cleared.
The aim of the presentation is to analyze the link between the staging of audience in some new documentary TV series and the role of jury which they depict. Last year was marked by premieres of two TV series - »The Jinx: Life and Deaths of Robert Durst« and »Making a Murderer«. Both tell the stories of two famous trials, but not from a position of a distanced observer. On the contrary, they tend to intermingle the portrayed trials with the real ones, thus actively interfering with the development of events.
Maya Deren’s enigmatic filmic work - prototypical »Meshes of the Afternoon« (1943) - is being considered as a milestone in modern experimental film.
Spectacolor Inc. was an advertising company that pioneered the first color urban screens of changeable messages and programmed by a computer in the late seventies of the last century. This innovation introduced the concept of »selling time« on billboards instead than the common practice of »selling space«, a change that would pave the way for outdoor advertising, becoming into an industry of billions of dollars. Spectacolor installed its first screens in Times Square in the early 80s, and was eventually sold in 2006 to Clear Channel, world leader in outdoor advertising.
The concept of counterfactuals, which has appeared in past decades in science and humanities, has become popular as a genre in fictional time-based and non-linear media and the fine arts. Therefore, I propose expanding the term, which describes retrospective considerations after turning points in life, in order to include the fine arts and encapsulate the research with the term counterfactualism. For future reference, I suggest a detailed categorisation for counterfactual movie narratives.
For Walter Benjamin reality was but a dream, or rather: a nightmare, and art was commissioned to make us wake up from it. Especially film was supposed to be capable of doing so by dismembering visual shards of reality in analogy to the extrafilmic world after World War I – whose actually fractioned status, to Benjamin, was not yet properly acknowledged. So for him the technique of montage, or generally speaking: the program of Surrealism was a critical means to disrupt an over-compact reality, as it did not merely reproduce reality but on the contrary: questioned it.
The debate between Jacques Derrida and John R. Searle that took place in the 1970ies in basically three texts (Derrida, 1971, 1977; Searle, 1977) and some further clarifications later on (Derrida, 1988, 1998, 2000; Searle, 1993, 1994) clearly articulated two different conceptions of ontology (Kurthen, 1989; Ferraris, 2009). Searle set forth the idea of „conditions of satisfaction“ in order to get a grip on the ontology of performative identities – from speech acts in particular to social institutions in general (Searle 1969, 1979, 1983, 2010).