Movement in film studies

Dimitris Eleftheriotis

in Cinematic Journeys

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print April 2010 | ISBN: 9780748633128
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748651269 | DOI:
Movement in film studies

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In the opening paragraph of an essay first published in 1977, David Bordwell points out that ‘camera movement in the cinema is one of the most difficult areas for critical analysis’. Frustratingly and in a manner that epitomises the way movement has been treated within film studies, the essay devotes very little time to a detailed consideration of movement. This chapter surveys of some of the influential theoretical traditions, including ‘early’ formulations (Rudolf Arnheim, Béla Balázs, André Bazin and others), the ‘classical paradigm’ (David Bordwell, Kristin Thompson, Janet Staiger), ‘suture theory’ (Jean-Pierre Oudart, Daniel Dayan, Stephen Heath, Pascal Bonitzer), the concept of ‘a-cinema’ (Jean-François Lyotard), and Gilles Deleuze's lengthy investigation of movement and time in cinema. It presents a textual analysis of two films which share a fascination with movement but demonstrate different formal strategies and attitudes towards pleasure: Jean-Luc Godard's Slow Motion (1980) and Györky Pálfi's Hukkle (2001).

Keywords: David Bordwell; cinematic movement; film studies; Slow Motion; Hukkle; cinema; pleasure; classical paradigm; suture theory; a-cinema

Chapter.  14990 words. 

Subjects: Film

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