torsdag 7. mai 2009

The ideal movie

Defining one's own taste in movies is a hard task. Also in doing so, one is risking being perceived as close-minded. I must admit I don't have one ideal movie, some rigid sets of preconceived rules which a movie must adhere to. I am pretty fond of variation and watch a lot of different movies. But, if I am completely honest with myself there are some hidden ideals that are of a general nature.

I am very fond of brave statements and movies that challenge our outlook on life and art. Pier Paolo Pasolini is one director I admire very much for this quality. Movies that deal with moral questions, spiritual questions that are draped with mystique and carefully considered symbols and images are what I consider important. Basically, the movies that mean the most to me are not genre-excercises, but unique movies that often avoid straightforward narratives. Genre-movies could also be interesting, especially if they redefine or break with genre-conventions, but they are rarely considered favorites. I'm not much of a formalist, though I can , and often do, love a movie based on cinematography, or great bravura shots. It's often what the movies stands for politically and philosophical and how it gets this across to the viewer, that is most important to me. I like original statements, and also hold the director in high regards, in typical auteurist fashion.

I could mention some important directors: Ingmar Bergman, Carl Theodor
Dreyer, Alfred Hitchcock, David Cronenberg, David Lynch, Federico Fellini, Andrej Tarkovskij, Louis Malle, Fritz Lang, F.W. Murnau, Michael Haneke, Roman Polanski, Jean Pierre Melville. As you can see, I am both fan of dramas, art movies, horror, surrealism, stylized crime movies, science fiction and thrillers. I seldom rate comedies highly (which I admit is a bit stupid when I think about it) and I am not a very big fan of realism. I think movies should transcend real life, and think that real art lies in the manipulation of reality.

I have a great deal of respect for the medium. The movies I dislike, are movies that merely exploit the medium, being made purely for financial reasons without trying to be original. Movies that tries to exploit a trend (the recent superhero movies, capitalistic shopping movies and romantic comedies spring to mind). I am not a film scholar, though I have attended a university course in Film History. I probably won't get into technical details much in my writings, but more general musings around movies, directors or genres.

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