This book argues that there are constitutive links between early twentieth-century German and French film theory and practice, on the one hand, and vitalist conceptions of life in biology and philosophy, on the other. By considering classical film-theoretical texts and their filmic objects in the light of vitalist ideas percolating in scientific and philosophical texts of the time, Cinematic Vitalism reveals the formation of a modernist, experimental and cinematic strand of vitalism in and around the movie theater. The book focuses on the key concepts including rhythm, environment, mood, and development to show how the cinematic vitalism articulated by film theorists and filmmakers maps out connections among human beings, milieus, and technologies that continue to structure our understanding of film.
Frederic Jameson and Film Theory is the first collection of its kind, it assesses and critically responds to Fredric Jameson’s remarkable contribution to film theory. The essays assembled explore key Jamesonian concepts—such as totality, national allegory, geopolitics, globalization, representation, and pastiche—and his historical schema of realism, modernism, and postmodernism, considering, in both cases, how these can be applied, revised, expanded and challenged within film studies. Featuring essays by leading and emerging voices in the field, the volume probes the contours and complexities of neoliberal capitalism across the globe and explores world cinema's situation within these forces by deploying and adapting Jamesonian concepts, and placing them in dialogue with other theoretical paradigms. The result is an innovative and rigorously analytical effort that offers a range of Marxist-inspired approaches towards cinemas from Asia, Latin America, Europe, and North America in the spirit of Jameson's famous rallying cry: 'always historicize!'.
The major essays of the distinguished and prolific Australian-born film critic Adrian Martin have long been difficult to access, so this anthology, which collects highlights of his work in one volume, will be welcomed throughout film studies. Martin offers indepth analysis of many genres of films while providing a broad understanding of the history of cinema and the history of film criticism and culture. These vibrant, highly personal essays, written between 1982 and 2016, balance breadth across cinema theory with almost encyclopedic detail, ranging between aesthetics, cinephilia, film genre, criticism, philosophy, and cultural politics. Mysteries of Cinema circumscribes a special cultural period that began with the dream of critique as a form of poetic writing, and today arrives at collaborative experiments in audiovisual essays. Throughout these essays, Martin pursues a particular vision of what cinema has been, what it is, and what it still could be.