The Fårö Landscape and Relationships in Scenes From A Marriage (1973) – Ingmar Bergman.

Scenes From A Marriage was Ingmar Bergman’s first successful attempt to work in the medium of serialised television.  It signposts many of the changes that the director would make during his work in the decade of the 1970s from an aesthetic and a thematic position.  Though a later cut was edited down and sold as a whole, cinematic artefact for American audiences, several changes to … Continue reading The Fårö Landscape and Relationships in Scenes From A Marriage (1973) – Ingmar Bergman.

Alchemical Magic in Derek Jarman’s The Tempest (1979).

Forever a cinematic alchemist – a sage that conjured and devoured celluloid before the eventual ritualistic sacrifice- Derek Jarman is the perfect suitor to Shakespeare’s The Tempest (1979); a play whose heart is bathed in the tragedy and power of magic.  Of course Jarman isn’t the only person from the Brit-pack of avant-garde directors to remould the work but his is the most natural.  Peter … Continue reading Alchemical Magic in Derek Jarman’s The Tempest (1979).

Repetition, Adorno and 71 Fragments Of A Chronology Of Chance (Haneke).

Much has been written about the stark comparisons between the cinema of Michael Haneke and the culture theories of the Frankfurt School of philosophy.  In the 2010 book, A Companion To Michael Haneke, Roy Grundmann devotes a whole essay in the volume to Theodor Adorno and the “aesthetic fragmentation” of several of Haneke’s films whilst various articles and essays spend time drawing comparisons to Haneke’s … Continue reading Repetition, Adorno and 71 Fragments Of A Chronology Of Chance (Haneke).

Electronic Music And Mental Illness In Cinema.

This article contains narrative spoilers. From its very earliest occurrences, electronic instrumentation and music has been used in cinema to signpost various aspects of mental health problems and issues within diegetic characters.  Alongside its uses in creating alien worlds, electronic instrumentation seems to, at least in the eyes of the films’ creators, have an ability to go deep within the human psyche as well as … Continue reading Electronic Music And Mental Illness In Cinema.

The Night Of The Hunter (1955) And The Death Waltz – Charles Laughton.

One of the best and most underrated moments from Charles Laughton’s The Night Of The Hunter (1955), the scene that captures the murder of Willa (Shelly Winters) after a prolonged period of brainwashing by Preacher Harry Powell (Robert Mitchum), is not only one of the most important and powerful moments in the film but one that sums up the more interesting end of thematic audio-visual … Continue reading The Night Of The Hunter (1955) And The Death Waltz – Charles Laughton.

Demise Of The Rural in Requiem For A Village (1976) And “Going, Going” (Philip Larkin).

I thought it would be last my time – The sense that, beyond the town, There would always be fields and farms, Where the village louts could climb Such trees as were not cut down; I knew there’d be false alarms – Going, Going, stanza 1 – Philip Larkin. Above is the opening stanza of Philip Larkin’s 1972 poem, Going, Going.  The poem captures the … Continue reading Demise Of The Rural in Requiem For A Village (1976) And “Going, Going” (Philip Larkin).

Falconry, H Is For Hawk, and Powell & Pressburger.

After recently finishing Helen Macdonald’s excellent book, H Is For Hawk, a number of connections and synchronicities emerged that all seemed in some way to tie in to its various chapters and ideas.  Whilst many of these were of a more personal, emotional nature, the chief connection of interest lay in the presence of hawks in Powell and Pressburger’s 1944 film, A Canterbury Tale.  This … Continue reading Falconry, H Is For Hawk, and Powell & Pressburger.

The “Urban Wyrd” In Folk Horror.

One of the key criticisms of the Folk Horror Chain is its emphasis, both in argument and in evidence, upon the rural landscape and its various elements.  While the key works of Folk Horror cinema seem to broadly use rural landscape aesthetics and practice to set and conjure their horror, by setting up such a parameter, it does indeed neglect some of the sub-genre’s most … Continue reading The “Urban Wyrd” In Folk Horror.

Death And The Urban Landscape Of Herostratus (1967).

In spite of many British films in late 1960s playing along with the optimistic idea of the counter-culture, free loving dream, several films from era stuck out for their adherence to the harsher reality of late 1960s, urban life.  This is a trait often more associated with the early 1970s, in particular, where all the ideals came crashing down, creating films such as Get Carter … Continue reading Death And The Urban Landscape Of Herostratus (1967).

Questioning Nostalgia In Folk Horror.

As the Folk Horror canon expands into more forms of media and territory, the Folk Horror Chain becomes less useful as a tool for looking at thematic material.  This is partly due to it being derived as an idea from one medium and one that is explicitly narrative based.  Yet, some of its ideas can be loosely translated into the area of reception studies of … Continue reading Questioning Nostalgia In Folk Horror.