Cinema: The Politics of Melodrama

MISSING Directed by Costa-Gavras

Screenplay by Costa-Gavras and Donald Stewart

TRAGEDY OF A RIDICULOUS MAN

Directed and Written by Bernardo Bertolucci

The argument goes like this: every movie is propaganda. Every character is a walking placard—for capitalism or idealism or monogamy or the status quo. Every shot, by its placement and rhythm and duration, is one more Pavlovian command to the viewer. A narrative movie is usually successful to the extent that it obscures these facts, transforms the thesis into entertainment and the placards into persuasive semblances of human beings.

In Z and State of...

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