I’m very happy to say that my next novel, How Pale The Winter Has Made Us, is to be published in February 2020 by Influx Press. We’ve been working together on it for a long time now, and are still working out little details of formatting and planning so I won’t be saying too much here. But, suffice to say, the project has been a … Continue reading How Pale The Winter Has Made Us (Influx Press, 2020)
New Releases Happy End – Michael Haneke Faces Places – Agnès Varda The Antigone – Tacita Dean Let The Sunshine In – Claire Denis You Were Never Really Here – Lynne Ramsay I don’t get to the cinema much these days, being both skint and constantly nervous of Dolby Surround Sound which sadly gives rise to anxiety attacks. However, these are the best films I’ve … Continue reading 2018 Review
I had, for some time, been wanting to dive into the city of Paris but had, for unconscious reasons, always put it off. I could never figure out truly why the thought of this city had both a powerful draw and a hand pushing on my chest to keep my distance but, after finally visiting this summer, I knew the reason why. It was because … Continue reading Wanders: Paris & Cinema
Even before the recent events that occurred in Charlottesville, a certain scene from Michael Haneke’s 2000 film, Code Unknown (Code Inconnu), had been repeatedly playing on a loop in my mind’s eye. I quietly admitted to myself recently that the scene in question is without a doubt the most telling and poignant dramatic escalation I have seen in twenty-first-century cinema and it seems to show … Continue reading Politics of Sequence in Code Unknown (2000, Michael 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).
Terrible things can happen in environments that allow people to step-back from consequences; this is the first step in most types of crime and film noir pictures. But to simply place Claire Denis’ latest film, Bastards (2014), into one of these categories just for the ease of categorisation does it little justice. Denis’ film has more to its narrative than its surface layer shadow but … Continue reading Bastards (Claire Denis, 2014) – Oily Depths and Blank Walls.
Part 1. The Seventh Continent. Unlike Freud’s vision of how the Death Drive manifests, Haneke uses the idea as an attack on a number of his usual tropes. Aspects of modern life such as the dreary drag of the 9 to 5 to the middle class obsession with materialism and ownership/possession all come under fire and blame for the Death Drive take over. The Seventh … Continue reading The Seventh Continent (Michael Haneke) and the Freudian Death Drive – Part 2
Introduction Michael Haneke’s debut feature set the tone for the majority of his interests that would be explored over the next few decades. The Seventh Continent (1989), though part of the Glaciation Trilogy, stands on its own for questioning a very specific and brutal form of philosophy; that of Freud’s Death Drive principles. Though Haneke would address philosophical issues in a lot of his films (this … Continue reading The Seventh Continent (Michael Haneke) and the Freudian Death Drive – Part 1.
There are a number of directors associated with the often brash task of dismantling the bourgeoisie through the use of allegory, metaphor and the sheer brutality of the cinematic form. Out of all of these, the likes of which include Luis Buñuel and Michael Haneke, Pier Paolo Pasolini stands tall above them in his consistent despising of the class and its social patriarchy. The late … Continue reading Theorem – Pier Paolo Pasolini (BFI Release).
One of Friedrich Nietzsche’s more famous and strangely popular idioms is his “Death of God” theory presented through the madman in his 1883 work The Gay Science. Though it has been used for all sorts of philosophical and theological purpose, often twisting it to fit whatever schematics the debater wants to shape it into, the idea itself can apply to several pieces of cinema, all … Continue reading Collapsing Belief Systems and The Nietzschean Death – (Winter Light, The White Ribbon, The Turin Horse).