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Flashcards in Art Film Deck (18)
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Art Cinema and Modernism

-modernist cinema distinguishable from art + avante garde
-art cinema can be understood as an example of modernism



-umbrella encompasses many diff artistic movements + trends
-broad tendencies within art that prevailed in the first half of the twentieth century
-constituted a break with two nineteenth century art movements: realism and romanticism: propensity to associated art with truth
-Less concerned with truth/meaning, more open to fragmentation



-embracing ethos
-we can only trust things we can see for ourselves
-Gustave Courbet: negation of the ideal, concrete can only consist of representation of real + existing things, drawn toward average people engaged in mundane activities
-Jean Francois Miller, John Sloan, Thomas Eakins



-everyday reality can be transcended, greater, metaphorical truth can be discovered
-Subjective, emotional, rational
-Caspar David Friedrich
-Charles Baudelaire: invoke intimacy, spirituality, colour, aspiration towards the infinite, expressed by every means available to the arts



-questions art’s role + capacity to capture truth and abandons the goal of verisimilar representation
-Questioned that there was a truth
-More interested in exploring form to explore mechanisms of self expression
-increased self-reflexivity (Acknowledges its own construction) and formal complexity (presents challenges to consumers)
-To shock, confuse, confront, disorient them



•The Great Upheaval
•Need to understand extra textual factors
•D. W. Griffith: brought together elements of classical cinema, relied heavily on classism conventions
•German expressionism: distorted, subjective vision of world, silent film
•Soviet Cinema: eissenstein, silent era, constructivism, cubofuturism
•French Avant-Garde: Leger (Balet Mechanique)
•Silent film modernism


Art Cinema vs. Avant-Garde Cinema: Avant-Garde

-Non-narrative/non sensical narratives
-extremely, extensively experimental, interested in exploring film, what distinguishes it (rhythmus 21)
-variable length
-distributed & exhibited through alternate channels


Art Cinema vs. Avant-Garde Cinema: Art

-narrative, tells stories differently form classic films
-limited in experimentation, experimentation does not override capacity to tell story
-feature length
-distributed & exhibited through conventional channels (theatres)


Art Film as a Mode of Film Practice

denotes a type of film that emerged in Europe in the 1950s.
•Shift emphasis to modernism: changes in funding policies, in international film market due to television, more opportunities for filmmakers
•Realism has run its course needed something else to keep film reinvigorating


Art Film as a Mode of Film Practice

•Potential for film need to be exploited so modernism could take shape
•Cinema of formal completive, self conscious, prone to over stylization, wears status as art, rejects previous conventions


Historical emergence

response to post WWII era (profound uncertainty regarding morality, gender roles, authority, nature of humanity), cinematic contribution to existentialism, assumptions before WWII were questioned (freedom, responsibility, agency)
•Pessimistic cinema, asks hard questions
•Nature of life, society, humans
•Besieged by uncertainty
•Jean Luc Godard, Troufeau, Felini, Mertilini, Pasilini, Ingmar Bergman


Distinct set of formal conventions

diff in terms of content, more adult subject matter, diff narrative + style



episodic construction (loosening of causal chain), psychologically complex characters, subjectivity + refusal of closure
loosen causality, favouring episodic structure: proceeds by way of episodes that may or may not have direct causal relationship, drifts rather than move efficiently from one event to next
•Dead time: stretches of time on screen where nothing really happens, we just observe + experience duration
•Acknowledge that life itself is always open ended and ongoing



•New equilibrium that always feel provisional, lacks finality
•Characters psychologically based, but not as transparent/accessible, motivations are often unclear to them + to us, defined more by contradictions rather than cohesions due to unstructured
•Lack of narrative direction allow for our attention to be directed to character development
•psychologically based character explored, but not explained in all of his/her complexity



not invisible, employs in overt self conscious fashion, calling attention to its creator + that it is art
•style grabs our attention
drawing attention to its form though any number of means, including discontinuous editing, stylized compositions, and unusual camera movements


Psychological realism

life like the art film is open ended, it does ramble, ppl are riddled with contradiction + complex



•encouraged way of comparing bodies of work
•director exerts themselves when deviating norm, intrusive narrator
•make us aware that we are watching art and that they made it
•we start to ask questions about the methods of narration



•when in doubt, read for maximum ambiguity
•any confusing elements, we should court/entertain multiple possible explanations
•forces ppl to talk after screening to figure out what happened