Two Films and a TV Show, or…The Eminence of Our Decay

"The dominant feature of psychological realism is its determination to be anti-bourgeois." Francois Truffaut "...the human skin of things, the epidermis of reality, that is the primary raw material of cinema." Artaud "Through style one infuses a film with a soul, and that is what makes it art..." Carl Theodore Dreyer I find that with the ubiquitous presence of screen media today, the paradoxical and ambiguous nature of acting and performance to be worth examining. And this ties in with questions of taste I posted about last time. Martin McDonagh's latest film, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri was released over the holidays. It is McDonagh's third film (feature length … [Read more...]

I See You Thinking

"I wonder if it is possible to give an intelligible explanation to the passage from principles to action without employing myths." George Sorel "Well, a lot of art has become a version of show business entertainment, so what strikes me as significant is that you have the Whitney giving a show to Jeff Koons, you have Damien Hirst as the star of it all, the man who says he has no integrity, explicitly. You have two pseudo gurus, Marina Abramovic, who I think is very dangerous, and Yoko Ono at the Museum of Modern Art. So you have what you might call celebrity art. To me it’s “non-art..." Donald Kuspit "Pen in hand, he wasn't a had fellow; but he was not, and could never heve been, even … [Read more...]

Ever the Same

“But to the degree that this left seeks to change the world without taking power, so an increasingly consolidated plutocratic capitalist class remains unchallenged in its ability to dominate the world without constraint. This new ruling class is aided by a security and surveillance state that is by no means loath to use its police powers to quell all forms of dissent in the name of anti-terrorism.” David Harvey "A painting can help us to think something that goes beyond this senseless existence. That’s something art can do." Gerhard Richter "...that people on the Left find increasingly that they have lost faith in the traditional diagnosis or in some part of the traditional … [Read more...]