Colloquium | Ben Singer

Wednesday, March 28, 2012 - 12:00pm

Ben Singer

On Stylistic Universals in Film

Film scholars typically discuss visual style as an emblem of auteurism and/or a meaning-laden phenomenon inviting thematic interpretation. This talk emphasizes a different frame of reference, highlighting ways in which certain cinematic tendencies can be understood as stylistic universals emerging more or less spontaneously in far-flung filmmaking traditions. Comparing films from Greece, Korea, India, Mexico, Hollywood, and elsewhere, the presentation will focus on two examples, showcasing surprisingly universal tendencies involving compositional idiosyncrasy and the spatial patterning of final shots at the end of films. What accounts for such universals, and what are the implications for critical practice?

Cinema Studies Program
209A Fisher-Bennett Hall ⋅ 3340 Walnut Street ⋅ Philadelphia, PA 19104 ⋅ (215) 898-8782