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No. 58, spring 2018
THE FIRST WORD
The future of Jump Cut
by Julia Lesage
Short term and long term thoughts from the editor.
Small form films: the (non)-cinema of Mike Ott
by Robert Campbell
Filmmaker Mike Ott explores class and landscape in the Californian desert through low-budget feature fictions that Ott calls "small form" cinema.
Representations of war and reconciliation in Godard’s Notre musique
by Vojislava Cordes
Notre Musique searches for reconciliation from multiple histories of warfare in the cinematic bridges and boundary crossings of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and the Bosnian milieux of Sarajevo and Mostar.
From off-brand to franchise: Watchmen as advertisement
by Ezra Claverie
Time Warner adapted a deliberately self-contained graphic novel into an open-ended source of new production, a strategy that voided many of the qualities that made the book distinctive, thereby revealing an instrumental logic opposed to both the aesthetics of the book and the aims of the author.
ASMR: Auratic encounters and women’s affective labor
by Laura Jaramillo
This essay explores Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response's (ASMR) unique aesthetic characteristics and contends that early iterations of online ASMR communities provide a rare space in which women's care labor is valued.
Being there again: reenacting camerawork in In Country (2014)
by Andy Rice
The Vietnam War and the films about it have become fodder for reenactment, here the subject of Mike Attie and Meghan O’Hara’s documentary In Country. Reenactment is alsomy impetus for revisiting what documentary evidence means in digital culture.
Shadow films: picturing the environmental crisis
by Claudia Springer
When we watch documentary eco-films such as Arid Lands and Crude, we merge them with imagery from fiction films, creating dramatic shadow films in our minds that can potentially galvanize our commitment to protecting the planet.
In memory of Braddock: Tony Buba’s portraits of working-class life
by Benjamin Ogrodnik
A former steelworker turned documentarian, Tony Buba responded to the crises of U.S. deindustrialization with a series of short film “portraits,” titled The Braddock Chronicles.
Between Neighborhoods (2017): documentary art,
audiovisual scholarship, and the public humanities
by Joshua Glick in conversation with Seth Fein
Joshua Glick discusses with Seth Fein the filmmaker's recent documentary dedicated to exploring audiovisual art's potential to transhistoricize present and past at once through its evocation of interborough and international imperialism and immigration that orbit the Unisphere in Queens, between today and the 1960s, the age of Donald Trump and that of Robert Moses.
Women’s mobility and autonomy on Manchukuo’s film screens
by Yue Chen
In Manchuko cinema, when women move in the city, an imagination of sovereignty begins.
Dispatch from Sarajevo: notes on the political correctness of differential laughter
by Emre Caglayan
An exploration of black comedy in Sangre and Albüm, and the ways in which laughter in film has the potential to generate a self-reflexive assessment of ethical and political issues.
Pain & Gain: global workout culture and the neoliberal ascetic ideal
by Juan Llamas-Rodriguez
Through an analysis of Michael Bay's Pain & Gain, this article argues for the interrelations between the growth of global fitness culture, the rise of neoliberalism, and the crises of white masculinity.
This is the End: or, bromances, beta men, and homophobia
by David Greven
This is the End foregrounds the transition from the beta male comedy to the bromance while suggesting that white male sexual anxiety drives the backlash against queerness and racial diversity.
Ridley Scott’s Prometheus and Alien: Covenant: the contemporary horror of AI
by Robert Alpert
The mythic beast of artificial intelligence approaches ever closer in Ridley Scott's two Alien prequels.
Mother! and the cli-fi conundrum
by Joseph K. Heumann and Robin L. Murray
Instead of offering commentary on climate change, Aronofsky’s Mother! displays a visually appealing homage to the 1960s avant-garde that presents women, their bodies, and a feminized earth as replaceable and interchangeable, like the parts of a mass-produced rifle.
20th Century Women: gender and the politics of history
by Robert Alpert
Director/screenwriter Mike Mills imaginatively constructs a semi-autobiographical tale about his mother. In the process he depicts how history informs gender as a form of cultural mythology.
U.S. SLAVERY'S LEGAL AND SYMBOLIC REMAINS
Planet of the Apes trilogy: Obama, Trump and the politics of an ape planet
by Penelope Ingram
Despite its overt message of minority group resistance, the new Planet of the Apes franchise engages in a form of racial politics that reflects an implicit white fear of an empowered African-American minority.
by Chuck Kleinhans
A short history of radical media making, keynote speech to Radical Film Network.
Making connections: report on Radical Film Network Conference
New York City, May 3-5, 2017
by Chris Robé
A report on the Radical Film Network conference and various grassroots media efforts occurring across Europe and North and South America.
The ongoing U.S. struggle for net neutrality
by Lyell Davies
In 2014-2015 and again in 2017, millions of people in the U.S. mobilized in support of Internet net neutrality, forming a mass movement in support of communications rights.
Oppositional media practices
review by Patricia R. Zimmermann of
Breaking the Spell: A History of Anarchist Filmmakers, Videotape Guerrillas, and Digital Ninjas by Chris Robé (Oakland, California: PM Press, 2017).
Tracking fifty years of radical anarchist media practices and organizations in the U.S. and Canada that resist neoliberalism through direct action film and videomaking.
The umbrella as symbol of inclusiveness: a conversation with Evans Chan on censorship and the 2014 Hong Kong Umbrella Movement
by Daniel C. Tsang
An interview with the director of Raise the Umbrellas.
SPECIAL SECTION: UNRULY WOMEN
Feminist media studies symposium: an introduction
by Julia Lesage
Papers in honor of the work of Kathleen Karlyn
Kathleen Rowe Karlyn and feminist genres of laughter
by Linda Mizejewski
Kathleen Rowe Karlyn’s trope of the unruly woman spurred a dramatic turnaround not just in scholarship on women’s comedy but in feminist film theory, nudging its focus away from fetishized female spectacle and toward funny women willing to make a spectacle of themselves.
Unruly bodies and body image heroines: corpulent femininity, Melissa McCarthy, and Pop-Feminism in the age of Trump
by Russell Meeuf
Melissa McCarthy’s unruly self-confidence earned her the kind of popularity that comedians like Roseanne never could, but her foray into political satire in the age of Trump reveals the challenges of meaningful politics in neoliberal culture.
Challenging the myth of the Manic Pixie Dream Girl
by Rachael Weir
The traditional female muse in art and film reappears in a contemporary, post-feminist female character trope called the Manic Pixie Dream Girl. The essay deconstructs the trope and challenge the trend of gender inequality in film narrative.
That girl’s got it!:” the unruly woman, romantic comedy, and sexual modernity
by Claire Graman
Earlier screwball comedy and that of today.
Wonder women: women's tears and why they matter
by Kathleen Karlyn
Two female figures—Diana, the protagonist of Patty Jenkins’ Wonder Woman, and Hillary Clinton—put the issue of female power on the cultural and political agenda in 2017, and while one is fictional and the other real, both demonstrate the ways female unruliness triggers strong emotions, from tears to fear and rage.
SPECIAL SECTION: THE CLAUDE JUTRA AFFAIR
by Julianne Pidduck
The “Affaire Jutra” and the figure of the child
by Julianne Pidduck
In response to the “Affaire Jutra” where a revered Quebec filmmaker was accused posthumously of pedophilia, I deploy theories of queer time to set in dialogue Claude Jutra’s mythic biography with the recurring and troubling figure of the child in several of his films.
"Fix yer tie!" an ekphrastic reply to Jutra's ekleipsis
a visual poem by John Greyson
A poetic repudiation of the righteous witchhunt culture that seeks to consign every Jutra street sign to the smug scrap heap of denial.
Black bodies, queer desires: Québécois national anxieties of race and sexuality in Claude Jutra’s À tout prendre (1963)
by Gregorio Pablo Rodríguez-Arbolay Jr.
An exploration of early queer subtext and (de)colonial performance of black female subjectivity in Claude Jutra’s À tout prendre (1963). The film reveals the anxieties of modern Québécois national (hetero)sexuality vis-à-vis the progressive cultural politics of modernity, secular nationalism, and anti-colonialism of the Quiet Revolution.
"Do you like boys?” Claude Jutra’s disappearances: confession, courage, cowardice
by Thomas Waugh
An essay on Claude Jutra's 2 disappearances, in 1996 and 2016 respectively. In the aftermath of the 2016 Jutra scandal that "disappeared" him, I parse Jutra's New Wave coming-out autofiction À tout prendre (1963), onscreen confession and offscreen context, and then migrate to Jutra`s six fiction and documentary films that testify to what I call "intergenerational eros." In doing so, I reclaim the term "pedophile" from the panic and abuse industries and reclaim his work and reappearance.
Excerpts from Quebec National Cinema (McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2001).
by Bill Marshall
In two outtakes from his important 2001 book Quebec National Cinema, Bill Marshall first draws on Deleuze to situate Claude Jutra’s masterpiece À tout prendre [Take it all] as a “founding fiction” of Quebec national cinema; in the second section, he takes up Jutra as a auteur figure, tracing treatments of identity and Quebec national allegories across his filmography.
Claude Jutra filmography and access to his films
Compiled by Julianne Pidduck, Alexis Poirier-Saumure and Thomas Waugh
CLASSICS FROM THE PAST
Contemporary working class film heroes in
Evel Knievel and The Last American Hero
by Chuck Kleinhans
A 1974 perspective on U.S. fiction films about the white working class.
Men’s pornography: gay vs. straight
by Thomas Waugh
Another classic from the past, with illustrations.
“What Kind of Bad?”: Curtis Mayfield and The Deuce
by Matthew Tchepikova-Treon
Listening to the social criticism and electric glamour of HBO's The Deuce through the sonic imagination of Curtis Mayfield.
Lost in my library
reviews by Chuck Kleinhans of
Abu Ghraib in art history perspective
review by Chuck Kleinhans of
Eisenman, Stephen F.. The Abu Ghraib Effect. London: Reaktion Books, 2007. $19.95 US
The story of the Flaherty Seminar
review by Bill Stamets of
Patricia R. Zimmermann and Scott MacDonald, The Flaherty: Decades in the Cause of Independent Cinema. Bloomington: University of Indiana Press, 2017.
Book on Flaherty Seminar by two participant-observers self-interrogates more than self-congratulates.
THE LAST WORD
Chuck Kleinhans 1942-2017: a personal memoir and a tribute
by Thomas Waugh
A friendship since 1974.
For Chuck Kleinhans: some thoughts on living in the Anthropocene
by Jyotsna Kapur
In Chuck’s study without him, some thoughts on bears, our species-being, and wishing for the end of the capitalocene.