Chapter

Introduction

Tanya Horeck and Tina Kendall

in The New Extremism in Cinema

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print June 2011 | ISBN: 9780748641604
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748651221 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3366/edinburgh/9780748641604.003.0001
Introduction

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This book explores a diverse body of films that have attracted attention for their graphic and confrontational images of sex and violence, and which can be described as part of a trend towards a ‘new extremism’ in contemporary European filmmaking. It adopts the term ‘new extremism’ in the context of contemporary film culture, both as it has been used to describe and often decry the work of a range of French directors such as Catherine Breillat, Gaspar Noé, Bruno Dumont and Philippe Grandrieux, as well as interrogate affinities with the work of European filmmakers like Michael Haneke, Lukas Moodysson, Lars von Trier and Ulrich Seidl. This book argues that the films of the new extremism and the controversies they engender are indispensable to the critical task of rethinking the terms of contemporary spectatorship. It locates the new extremism in cinema in light of the complex and often contradictory ways in which these films situate sex and violence as a means of interrogating the relationship between films and their spectators in the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries.

Keywords: Gaspar Noé; Bruno Dumont; filmmaking; sex; violence; new extremism; Michael Haneke; Lukas Moodysson; Lars von Trier; spectatorship

Chapter.  7658 words. 

Subjects: Film

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