- Feb 2018
lthough less obviously ‘difficult’ than The Waste Land, Moulin Rouge!makes effective use of the dense layering effect allusion allows.This complex layering is put into the service of a simple, melodramatic love story, rather than a meditation on the spiritual aridity of modern life. Moulin Rouge!’s innocent, sentimental celebration of love could, in fact, be read as Luhrmann’s response the kind of dislocation Eliot portrays in The Waste Land.
I really find this argument fascinating. The "less obviously difficult" perspective as it relates to many works that have been in-part inspired by The Waste Land. I like the idea of nuanced allusion, you don't necessarily need to know all the allusion to understand the storyline. This manifests itself well in works with more plot-based writing. The novel or cinema might be better at achieving the "less obviously difficult" allusion because it has a strong narrative already. The allusion comes alongside of it, or in the case of Moulin Rouge, the allusions are a part of the pop culture the audience is already familiar with.
- Feb 2017
They arc deeply immersed in illusions and in dream images; their eyes merely glide over the surface of things and sec "forms." Their senses nowhere lead to truth; on the contrary, they are content to receive stimuli and, as it were, lo en-gage in a groping game on the backs of things. Moreover, man permits himself to be deceived in f I his dreams every night of his life.
So much of this piece reminds me of the films of David Lynch, specifically Mulholland Drive. Much as Nietzsche is fascinated by language as a sign of something rather than something in itself, Mulholland Drive is a film that is more interested in exploring the vapid nature of cinema and the nothingness of film. Throughout the film, Lynch pulls the rug out from under his audience repeatedly, bluntly drawing attention to the fact that film is only the representation of genuine experience or emotion, leaving viewers alone with the nothingness that film actually is. Everything in Mulholland Drive is a "surface of things" (as Nietzsche would put it) rather than an actual thing. The best example of this is the "Club Silencio" scene in which the club's emcee repeatedly yells "No Hay Banda." However, when a number of musicians emerge on stage immediately after this proclamation, viewers still are surprised when these acts are revealed to be nothing but hollow, fraudulent performances, merely a "surface of things."
The deception of dreams that Nietzsche touches on here is also another central theme of Mulholland Drive as Lynch explores the disorientation and terror of nightmares.
The moral of this annotation is Mulholland Drive is a brilliant film that you absolutely must watch.
tropes "are considered to be the most artistic means of rhetoric.
Nietzsche's use of "trope" here is interesting; the positive connotation is certainly distinctive from the negative connotation that the word has in our 2017 society. However, his high praise of tropes is fascinating and relevant, and though it is probably only tangentially related, it reminds me of this article from io9 which discusses how tropes in science fiction films ought to be viewed as positive artistic devices instead of negative ones:
"Even when a movie gleefully steals from everything it can get its grubby mitts on, as in the case of James Cameron's Avatar, that doesn't necessarily make it any less of an "original" story. Cameron may have admitted Avatar is basically Dances With Wolves in space, but he still came up with a cool new world (including the telepathic fiber-optic connection between people and creatures) and the neat plot device of a human occupying a genetically engineered alien body. Plus there was still no existing Avatar fanbase saying "if it doesn't have the big red dragon, I'm rioting."
Avatar is terrible, but not because of its use of tropes.