The Cine-Files’ special issue on mise-en-scene: Laura Mulvey, Kristin Thompson, V.F. Perkins, Lesley Stern, Adrian Martin, Christian Keathley, Jean Ma, Girish Shambu, John Gibbs and Jesse Green

Advertisements

More Victor Perkins Video Interviews Online from Saarbruecken

Film Studies For Free very excitedly learnt of the posting of five more fascinating and hugely insightful extracts from the marvellous recorded interview with legendary film scholar V.F. Perkins which took place at the Kino 8 1/2 in Saarbrücken, Germany, and was filmed by Media Art and Design Studiengang. They are available online here.

If you missed the earlier seven interview extracts you can find them in one handy place (and, let’s say it: FSFF is one very handy place!) here.

What more need FSFF say, than “Enjoy, enjoy, enjoy, enjoy, and enjoy”!

V.F. Perkins on FILM AS FILM

Victor Perkins discusses his ideas and approaches to film aesthetics

Film Studies For Free just got wind of the below videos: seven segments of a truly fascinating interview with V.F. Perkins which took place at the Kino 8 1/2 in Saarbrücken, Germany, and was filmed by Media Art and Design Studiengang.

In the interview, Perkins engagingly discusses his approach to film studies and, in particular, talks about the trajectory of his seminal 1972 book Film as Film. A wonderful resource.

And once you’ve watched the videos, make sure to check out the listings of links to some of V.F. Perkins work online at the very foot of FSFF‘s entry.

>MOVIE: A Journal of Film Criticism

>

MOVIE: A Journal of Film Criticism is a refereed academic publication whose aim is to create a forum for the range of analysis, debate and discussion that only a journal devoted to a detailed film criticism can adequately provide. We are committed to publishing rigorous but accessible critical writing, at a variety of lengths, that is responsive to the detailed texture and artistry of film and television, old and new. We also welcome articles that illuminate concepts, analytical methods and questions in film aesthetics that are of significance to film criticism. The journal is published on a bi-annual basis.

Film Studies For Free is jumping for joy!  MOVIE, the legendary film magazine (1962-2000) published and designed by the late, and much lamented, Ian Cameron (1937-2010) and source of some of the most brilliant and influential writing on film ever, has inspired the beautiful birth of Movie: A Journal of Film Criticism, an online and openly accessible scholarly periodical, with a website hosted by the University of Warwick

Many of the same people central to MOVIE’s earlier incarnation are involved this time around (Victor Perkins, Douglas Pye, Jim Hillier, Charles Barr, Deborah Thomas, Ed Gallafent, Michael Walker) together with a whole host of some of the best and brightest younger film writers (Andrew Klevan, James Macdowell, John Gibbs, Kathrina Glitre). 

FSFF hasn’t read it yet, but wanted to rush you the news. So, as usual, the table of contents (with direct links to PDF files) is pasted in below. 

Wow, wow, wow…

Issue 1, 2010

This issue edited by Edward Gallafent and John Gibbs, with grateful acknowledgement of the contributions of Lucy Fife Donaldson and James MacDowell.

On Pleasure: free Perkins in new Film Quarterly


Image from Le Plaisir (Max Ophüls, 1952)

Thanks to The Auteurs Daily, Film Studies For Free heard about the new issue of Film Quarterly (Vol. 63, No. 1, Fall 2009) which comes with a wonderful, freely-accessible article by V.F.Perkins: ‘Reconsideration: Le Plaisir: “The Mask” and “The Model”‘. It’s a fabulously illustrated study of Max Ophüls’s 1952 film Le Plaisir, an adaptation of three short stories by Guy de Maupassant: ‘Le Masque’, ‘La Maison Tellier’, and ‘Le Modèle’.

Other freely-accessible items in this issue include: Rob White, ‘Editor’s Notebook: Against Nature’; Joshua Clover, ‘Marx and Coca-Cola: The Future in Labor’; Danny Birchall, ‘Talking Point: The Avant-Garde Archive Online’

This and that (Perkins, Rich on Kuchar Bros, Westerns, Fan Videos, Timecode, Kubrick and the Coens)

Trailer for It Came From Kuchar – As Alexandra Juhasz writes at Media Praxis: ‘[This] documentary does little more than let the brothers, their films, and fans speak for themselves. And what more do we need? Inventive, life-long bohemians making their work outside dominant structures and to an international fanbase of crazed cineastes. As I implied regarding Fig Trees recently: it becomes an increasingly rare pleasure to see work that resides outside the dumbed down regime of the popular.’

Having been briefly out of action, Film Studies For Free is sorting through its in-tray and to-do lists. Below are some assorted bits of online news and links that it wanted you not to miss:

In this audio interview Emmy Winner Charlotte Robinson talks with B Ruby Rich, American Scholar and Film Critic about Director Jennifer M. Kroot’s documentary “It Came From Kuchar.” Long before YouTube, there were the outrageous, no-budget movies of underground, filmmaking twins George and Mike Kuchar. George and Mike grew up in the Bronx in the 1950’s. At the age of twelve, they became obsessed with Hollywood melodramas and began making their own homespun melodramas with their aunt’s 8mm camera. They used their friends and family as actors and their Bronx neighborhood as their set. Early Kuchar titles featured in this film include “I Was A Teenage Rumpot” and “Born of the Wind”. In the early 1960’s, alongside Andy Warhol, the Kuchar brothers shaped the New York underground film scene. Known as the “8mm Mozarts”, their films were noticeably different than other underground films of the time. They were wildly funny, but also human and vulnerable. Their films have inspired many filmmakers, including John Waters, Buck Henry, Atom Egoyan, Guy Maddin and Wayne Wang (all are interviewed in this film). Despite having high profile fans, the Kuchars remain largely unknown because they are only ambitious to make movies, not to be famous.

More V.F. Perkins Online


Image from You Only Live Once (Fritz Lang, 1937)

Film Studies For Free is extremely fond of the work of V. F. Perkins, world-renowned author of Film as Film (London: Penguin Books, 1972 – see an recent interesting review HERE).

FSFF has previously drawn attention to two pieces of Perkins’ hugely influential work which are freely available online:

  • ‘Same Tune Again! Repetition and Framing in Letter from an Unknown Woman’ (originally published in CineAction! no. 52) republished online by Danish film studies journal 16:9 (September 2003) and accessible HERE.
  • ‘Moments of Choice’ [on film directing] (originally published in The Movie, ch. 58, reprinted in Ann Lloyd (ed.), Movie Book of the Fifties, Orbis, 1982) republished online by the Australian journal Rouge (issue 9, 2006) and accessible HERE.

Today, it is delighted to bring to its readers’ attention a further Open Access essay by Perkins which is currently stored at WRAP: the Warwick Research Archive Project.

The piece is an as yet undated and otherwise unpublished article entitled ‘You Only Live Once‘ that brilliantly treats this magisterial 1937 film directed by Fritz Lang.

Here’s an excerpt from the essay with relevant hyperlinks added by FSFF:

Anyone who wants to write usefully about You Only Live Once has to build on the work of George M Wilson. A chapter in [Narration in Light: Studies in Cinematic Point of View (Johns Hopkins University Press, 1986)] makes a systematic presentation of the movie’s narrative strategies, and a detailed reading of key images. Wilson shows how Lang’s picture is designed to educate its viewers in the manipulability of the image, and to demonstrate the power of the film sequence to deceive us by obscuring key points in its story and by soliciting preferred readings that the content of the images may not in fact guarantee. The achievement that Wilson uncovers is the more remarkable in that it occurs not in an illustrated lecture but in a fiction movie, one that works to powerful effect within its genre of social protest melodrama.

Wilson’s essay opened my eyes to You Only Live Once, a movie that I had previously found opaque because, apart from its evident social project, I had not seen a purpose in its meticulous design beyond that of giving power and plausibility to a noticeably contrived tale. In what follows I take for granted the main lines of Wilson’s argument in order to develop some remarks on Lang’s mise-en-scène in two representative sequences.

>More V.F. Perkins Online

>


Image from You Only Live Once (Fritz Lang, 1937)

Film Studies For Free is extremely fond of the work of V. F. Perkins, world-renowned author of Film as Film (London: Penguin Books, 1972 – see an recent interesting review HERE).

FSFF has previously drawn attention to two pieces of Perkins’ hugely influential work which are freely available online:

  • ‘Same Tune Again! Repetition and Framing in Letter from an Unknown Woman’ (originally published in CineAction! no. 52) republished online by Danish film studies journal 16:9 (September 2003) and accessible HERE.
  • ‘Moments of Choice’ [on film directing] (originally published in The Movie, ch. 58, reprinted in Ann Lloyd (ed.), Movie Book of the Fifties, Orbis, 1982) republished online by the Australian journal Rouge (issue 9, 2006) and accessible HERE.

Today, it is delighted to bring to its readers’ attention a further Open Access essay by Perkins which is currently stored at WRAP: the Warwick Research Archive Project.

The piece is an as yet undated and otherwise unpublished article entitled ‘You Only Live Once‘ that brilliantly treats this magisterial 1937 film directed by Fritz Lang.

Here’s an excerpt from the essay with relevant hyperlinks added by FSFF:

Anyone who wants to write usefully about You Only Live Once has to build on the work of George M Wilson. A chapter in [Narration in Light: Studies in Cinematic Point of View (Johns Hopkins University Press, 1986)] makes a systematic presentation of the movie’s narrative strategies, and a detailed reading of key images. Wilson shows how Lang’s picture is designed to educate its viewers in the manipulability of the image, and to demonstrate the power of the film sequence to deceive us by obscuring key points in its story and by soliciting preferred readings that the content of the images may not in fact guarantee. The achievement that Wilson uncovers is the more remarkable in that it occurs not in an illustrated lecture but in a fiction movie, one that works to powerful effect within its genre of social protest melodrama.

Wilson’s essay opened my eyes to You Only Live Once, a movie that I had previously found opaque because, apart from its evident social project, I had not seen a purpose in its meticulous design beyond that of giving power and plausibility to a noticeably contrived tale. In what follows I take for granted the main lines of Wilson’s argument in order to develop some remarks on Lang’s mise-en-scène in two representative sequences.

V.F. Perkins Online

A tiny little post to indicate the websites where two indispensable articles about film (and film studies) by Victor Perkins, world-renowned author of Film as Film (London: Penguin Books, 1972), can be found:

  • ‘Same Tune Again! Repetition and Framing in Letter from an Unknown Woman’ (originally published in CineAction! no. 52) republished online by Danish film studies journal 16:9 (September 2003) and accessible HERE.
  • ‘Moments of Choice’ [on film directing] (originally published in The Movie, ch. 58, reprinted in Ann Lloyd (ed.), Movie Book of the Fifties, Orbis, 1982) republished online by the Australian journal Rouge (issue 9, 2006) and accessible HERE.

These are the two highlights of a number of recent updates to Film Studies For Free’s listing of links to ‘Individual Authors’ Online Writing Of Note’.

[Note added on September 26, 2008: for a detailed discussion of Perkins’ ‘Moments of Choice’, please see my posting on it on the Directing Cinema blog (link HERE).]