IN ENGLISH. Kenji Mizoguchi remains as one of Japan’s most accomplished filmmakers. His work called upon a number of influences, not just from his cinematic peers, but also from his own culture. One such influence which was prevalent throughout his life as a director was the Japanese theatre, particularly traditional noh theatre which was used as both a stylistic and narrative device. In our latest article, Paul Spicer explores this relationship by examining two of his most important works of the 1950s.
IN ENGLISH. For more than 40 years, John Williams's Star Wars main title music has remained one of our most popular pieces of symphonic film music. This is the story of its very first recording, used in the film and on the soundtrack album. Subjected to reconception, deconstruction, suppression and restoration, this the most celebrated recording has led a surprisingly eventful commercial career.
INTERVIEW. Tim Hunter is an esteemed film and TV director who began his career as a writer of independent movies, before going on to become one of the most famous episode directors in American television. 16:9 met him in Los Angeles for a talk about his career, about the film and television industries, about his predilection for stories and film history and about the changes in the mediascape. Fittingly, the interview is lengthy, inclusive and anecdotal, forming a sort of double feature that tells the small story of one director and writer in Hollywood and a larger story of Hollywood itself and the changes in the industry.
IN ENGLISH. Preparing a book on sound design in films and television, Andreas Halskov has talked with Walter Murch about film sound, listening and technology, focusing on Murch’s sonic inventiveness and his long-standing collaborations with George Lucas and Francis Ford Coppola.
IN ENGLISH. Chris Marker’s La jetée (1962) has intrigued many critics, who have for the most part focused on the narrative and the form of the film. Instead of pursuing this angle, Sébastien Doubinsky explores how La jetéequestions the notions of memory, history and power through an artificial construction that goes against the conventional definition of a moving picture.
VIDEO-ESSAY. Having won the Palme d’Or in 2017, it is no surprise that Ruben Östlund draws from other prizewinning directors like Michael Haneke and Roy Andersson. But you wouldn’t expect a Palme d’Or-winning director to find stylistic inspiration in skiing films and on YouTube. Mathias Bonde Korsgaard traces the unlikely origins of Östlund’s long-take style.
IN ENGLISH. How do contemporary television distribution methods and consumption practices influence TV comedies? How are texts, production routines and ways of engaging the audience reshaped? Critically acclaimed TV series Master of None (2016-) and Atlanta (2016-) are good examples of such deep tranformations, leading to a reinvention of the comedy genre.
IN ENGLISH. The original cycle of giallo films were infamous for their scenes of murder presented in lurid and graphic detail. Although dismissed at the time as exemplifying the traits of ‘bad’ filmmaking, these films have since become highly influential. Lindsay Hallam argues that the neo-giallo focuses less on recreating a giallo narrative, and more on evoking sensory responses through vivid colour schemes, psychedelic soundtracks, and visceral imagery.
IN ENGLISH. Anton Chigurh, the main villain of the Coen Brothers’ No Country for Old Men (2007), has been called a ”Monster for the Ages.” What makes him so? Jens Kjeldgaard-Christiansen shows how a moral psychological perspective can render the aesthetically supercharged antisociality of the character intelligible.
IN ENGLISH. In terms of style and content, the new Twin Peaks is radically different from the original series, and it includes abstract references to different David Lynch productions while combining familiar faces and places with new situations, stylistic choices and characters. In many ways, the new series is about “returning,” about going back and trying to rediscover or even recreate Twin Peaks, but the revival is not a nostalgic revisit to a cozy, All-American small-town. That gum you like has come back in a different style.