Lecture Notes, Wk 8 - Week 8 pg 1 Modes of Representation 1...

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Week 8 – pg. Modes of Representation 1. Modes of Representation . a. Mimetic – pantomiming, pretending. b. Realism – mimetic basis of art. Deals with common, everyday man. Doesn’t confirm any values though. c. Formalism – purpose is not to imitate reality, but to re-create reality as filtered through the director’s thoughts, feelings, themes... i. Allows subjectivity of reality – a recreated basis of art. 2. Realism a. Realists try to break down realities. b. Realism is a method of representation to imitate reality. i. Has bleak, ambiguous endings. c. Realism as an attitude of mind. i. It’s not what is being said, but how it’s said. d. Types of Realist Filmmaking i. Primitive Realism / Photojournalism – the first school of realism in film, influenced by photography and the stage. 1. Ex.: the Lumiere Brothers’ The Arrival of a Tran at the Station . ii. Naturalism – image of man as determined by heredity, instinct, and environment. Records surface details as well as below-the-surface details (root causes). iii. Hollywood’s Classical Realism – Hollywood fiction film’s predominant style from 1929-1945, aka “romantic/idealist” type of realism because: 1. Transparency technique – erases camera by immersing spectator in characters and situations, thus accepting them real. 2. World is Homogenous and Idealized – young, pretty people. Morally good protagonists and bad antagonists. Hero/villain dichotomy. Happy ending. iv. Hollywood’s Social Realism – style that surfaced within Hollywood’s Classical Realism (chiefly at Warner Brothers, 1929-1945) because of an awakening of social consciousness in America during the Depression. Characterized by: 1
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Week 8 – pg. 1. Proletarian (working-class), nitty-gritty quality. 2. Protagonist is common, working man, (aka “society’s loser”). 3. Focus on interaction of individual within social institutions, with a cynical attitude towards social institutions. v. French Poetic Realism – blend of realism and lyricism in French cinema from 1934-1940, focusing on: 1. Working-class, urban protagonist up against class politics & modern industrialization which he cannot relate.
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