Categories
Film Filmosophy

What if luck was a commodity that could be bought, sold… and stolen?

Juan Carlos Fresnadillo’s stunning Intacto – now showing on Mubi 
https://mubi.com/films/intacto

Categories
Film

Happy Birthday Elvis!

Categories
Film

#JeSuisCharlie

Categories
Film

Scotland on Screen

As promised to my American friends, here are just a few recommendations of ‘Scottish’ films (Braveheart purposefully omitted).

Ae Fond Kiss (Loach 2004); The Angels’ Share (Loach 2012); Breaking the Waves (Von Trier 1995); Brigadoon (Minnelli 1954); Filth (Baird 2013); Gregory’s Girl (Forsyth 1981); Hallam Foe (Mackenzie 2007); The Illusionist (Chomet 2010); Local Hero (Forsyth 1983); Morvern Callar (Ramsey 2002); Neds (Mullen 2010); Orphans (Mullen 1998); The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie (Neame 1969); Ratcatcher (Ramsey 1999); Red Road (Arnold 2006); Shallow Grave (Boyle 1995); Small Faces (MacKinnon 1996); Sunshine on Leith (Fletcher 2013); Sweet Sixteen (Loach 2002); Trainspotting (Boyle 1996); Under the Skin (Glazer 2013); Whisky Galore (Mackendrick 1949); The Wicker Man (Hardy 1974).

Please feel free to add to this list (or take exception) via the comments section below.

Categories
Courses Film Filmosophy Open Studies The Philosophy of Film Thinking though Film

Thinking through Film – new course starts 12 January 2015

An introduction to philosophy through the medium of film. Using a diverse range of films, we will explore some of the most interesting issues in philosophy. In doing so, we will learn what film can contribute to philosophy, and how philosophy can contribute to our enjoyment and understanding of film.

For more information, and to enrol online click here.

Categories
Film Filmosophy

Michael Haneke

“Film is 24 lies per second at the service of truth, or at the service of the attempt to find the truth.”

Categories
Film Filmosophy

Jean-Luc Godard

Photography is truth. The cinema is truth twenty-four times per second.

Categories
Filmosophy

“Remember, no man is a failure who has friends.” – It’s a Wonderful Life (Capra 1946)

Categories
Filmosophy

Krzysztof Kieślowski

“The goal [of film] is to capture what lies within us.”

Categories
Film Filmosophy

Ingmar Bergman

“No art passes our conscience in the way film does, and goes directly to our feelings, deep down into the dark rooms of our souls.”

Categories
Filmosophy

FILMOSOPHY: The Double Life of Veronique

Tuesday 9 December at Filmhouse Edinburgh

http://www.filmhousecinema.com/showing/the-double-life-of-veronique-dec14

Categories
Filmosophy

Plato’s Cine-Cave

In his Cave Allegory (Republic, c.360 BCE), Plato presents a strikingly visual account of the distinction between knowledge and belief and, in doing so, provides us with what may be considered the earliest cinema.

Plato (514a-517a) invites us to imagine humanity as prisoners who have been captive since birth in an underground chamber. There they sit, facing the back wall of the cave, unable even to turn their heads. Behind them, and higher up, a fire is burning, and between the fire and the prisoners runs a road, along which a wall has been built. Along the road there are men carrying artefacts and the fire projects shadows of these artefacts onto the back wall of the cave. The prisoners, “would believe that the shadows of the objects …were the whole truth” (515c). In what follows, we are asked to consider what would happen were one of the prisoners to be compelled to stand and turn to face the fire, and then again, what if he were “forcibly dragged up the steep and rugged ascent and not let go till he had been dragged out into the sunlight” (516a). Eventually, the released prisoner would come to realise that what he used to take for reality was nothing but shadow and illusion, and he was now seeing things more clearly. Eventually, however, he must return to the cave and attempt to convince his former fellow prisoners of their illusory state despite Plato’s warning that, “if anyone tried to release them and lead them up, they would kill him if they could lay hands on him” (517a).

Plato’s Cave may strike us as very familiar to the modern cinema – we sit in the dark watching projected images play out the drama on the screen before us. There is, however,  a very important distinction between the prisoners in the cave and modern cinema goers, in that Plato’s prisoners are unaware of the fact that what they see is mere shadow and illusion – they take this to be reality.  We, on the other hand, are able to distinguish what we see on the screen from ‘the real world’ outside the cinema. So, unlike Plato’s prisoners, who are deceived into taking the shadows for reality itself, it may be possible for us to use film to gain an insight into the world outside the cinema.

Plato’s allegory of the cave can be found in many films: A Clockwork Orange (Kubrick 1971), Cinema Paradiso (Tornatore 1998), The Matrix (Wachowski Brothers 1999), Pi (Aronofsky 1998). Perhaps the most explicit illustration of Plato’s allegory is in Bernardo Bertolucci’s The Conformist (Il Conformista 1970). This film-essay combines images from The Conformist, along with an Orson Welles reading of Plato’s text.

The Conformist will be the first screening of the Filmosophy summer school. Through this and other screenings we will learn what film can contribute to philosophy, and how philosophy can contribute to our enjoyment and understanding of film.