Abbas kiarostami auteur
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Abbas Kiarostami , auteur. Mini Lecture 17. Auteur Theory. “la politique des Auteurs,” phrase used in 1954 by François Truffaut (French film director and critic for the Cahiers du Cinema ) Becomes “auteur theory” in 1962 with an article by Andrew Sarris

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Abbas kiarostami auteur

Abbas Kiarostami, auteur

Mini Lecture 17


Auteur theory

Auteur Theory

  • “la politique des Auteurs,” phrase used in 1954 by François Truffaut (French film director and critic for the Cahiers du Cinema)

  • Becomes “auteur theory” in 1962 with an article by Andrew Sarris

  • An theory based on the importance of film direction: a film’s “author” is its director. (c.f. Kracauer)

  • Film authorship as an organizing principle, a classificatory scheme

  • The body of work versus the masterpiece


Premise 1 technique

Premise #1: Technique

  • “A great director has to be at least a good director” (Sarris)

  • i.e. the director must have some technical competence

  • “Technique is simply the ability to put a film together with some clarity and coherence. Nowadays, it is possible to become a director without knowing too much about the technical side, even the crucial functions of photography and editing. An expert production crew could probably cover up for a chimpanzee in the director’s chair. How do you tell the genuine director from the quasichimpanzee? After a given number of films, a pattern is established.”


Premise 2 personal style

Premise #2: Personal Style

  • “The distinguishable personality of the director” is a measure of value.

  • “Over a group of films [i.e. an oeuvre], a director must exhibit certain recurrent characteristics of style, which serve as his signature. The way a film looks and moves should have some relationship to the way a director thinks and feels.”

  • A metteur en scene(or scene-setter) is not an auteur


Premise 3 interior meaning

Premise #3: Interior Meaning

  • “Interior meaning”; “an élan of the soul”

  • Combines a director’s vision of the world and attitude toward life with the stuff of filmmaking

  • Form and content cannot be unentangled

  • “In one sequence of…, Renoir gallops up the stairs, turns to his right with a lurching movement, stops in hoplike uncertainty when his name is called by a coquettish maid, and, then, with marvelous postreflex continuity, resumes his bearishly shambling journey to the heroine’s boudoir. If I could describe the musical grace note of that momentary suspension, and I can’t, I might be able to provide a more precise definition of the auteur theory.”


Abbas kiarostami auteur

TECHNIQUE

PERSONAL STYLE: METTEUR EN SCENE

INTERIOR MEANING: AUTEUR


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