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Film and Reality: Kissing Cousins - Essay Example

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Daniel Frampton’s philosophy regarding film is, in essence, that films should not be reduced to its parts. This is because all of the elements of the film make the whole, and the whole of the film is what is important…
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Film and Reality: Kissing Cousins
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Download file to see previous pages Because of this, according to Frampton, a film theorist shouldn’t break a film into pieces – the director was good or bad, or the acting was good or bad, the cinematography was good or bad, etc. If a film theorist breaks the film into its parts, then the film theorist is missing the point – the essence of the film is the thinking of the film. A good film connects with the audience on a primal level, not an aesthetic one. As such, films which provide a new form of reality that substantially different from our own – like a cartoon or other type of animated film, or even a digital film – takes the audience out of the realm of examining the film intuitively, and makes the audience examine the movie more rationally and aesthetically. The exception to this is the digital film that does not recreate reality, but, rather, provides a fresh perspective on the current reality. These films still succeed in getting the audience to engage on a subliminal level, argues Frampton, because these films provide elements which are familiar, yet providing a new twist on reality. Therefore, cinema, to Frampton, is a cousin to reality. This is because it is not far removed from reality. The audience sees the film and is transported into the world of that movie, with all the attendant dreams, nightmares, thoughts and beliefs of the characters. Dicing a film into its parts takes the film out of this reality, and reminds the audience that they are, in fact, watching a movie. If one takes the movie and talks about the great acting and directing, then it is a reminder that the movie isn’t real. At the same time, according to Frampton, movies that have no elements of being real are not successful in engaging the audience on this level. The films that do have elements of reality, however, but provide a twist on reality, are successful, because they seem familiar to the audience. Star Wars provided a twist on reality, in that, even though it is set a long time ago, in a galaxy far, far, away, it still featured human characters. These humans are familiar to us, and they have the same hopes, dreams and ambitions as we do. Arguably, if Luke Skywalker were not played by a human actor, but, rather, he was portrayed as somebody who looks like an alien, and the other principle parts were the same, the movie wouldn’t be as successful – the audience would not be able to engage, because the movie would not be a cousin to reality, but would be something that would be completely unrealistic. The Twilight movies, which provide a world that is not like our own, in that vampires are roaming the earth, nonetheless works to bring the audience in because the setting is familiar, and the vampires look human, for the most part. Avatar, which featured blue-skinned aliens, worked because of the human element as well. Criticism Yacavone (2008) expands upon the Frampton notion of cinema being a cousin to reality. He agrees that the films are affective, which is what Frampton argues that the films are. But he also states that the films have elements which are symbolic/cognitive elements. Yacavone (2008) states that, unlike Frampton, who believes that films should only be examined on the level of the subjective experience of the audience, Yacavone (2008) states that the creation and objective existence of a film must be addressed as well. Yacavone (2008) acknowledges that the critics who break the film into the diegetic elements are conceiving the ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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