week 6 reading

the essay film rests between fiction and non fiction cinema

an essay is neither fiction nor fact

indeterminate, open and indefinable

reflectivity and subjectivity

unlike the documentary film which prevents fact and information, essay film produces complex thought (at times not grounded in reality, can be contradictory, fantastic)


meeting point between intellect and emotion

film essays originated from documentary and documentary forms (cinema verite for one)

Phillip Lopate : we must distinguish from a reflective self conscious style and a truly essayistic one > an essay film must have words (either text spoken subtitled or intertitled) which represents a single voice, text must represent and attempt to work out some reasoned line of discourse on a problem, text must impart more than information, readers must be included in a conversation, follow a mental process of contradiction and digression

Timothy Corrigan: usually a short documentary subject, lack of dominant narrative organisation, interaction of a personal voice or vision, interaction of subjective perspective

Michael Renov : descriptive and reflexive modalities are coupled, subjectivity and reflexivity are the staples of the essay film


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