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Reframing Reality

The Aesthetics of the Surrealist Object in French and Czech Cinema

The surrealist object is an everyday item that takes on multiple associations by provoking the viewer’s imagination. It also poses a specific challenge for some filmmakers who seek to apply surrealist ideas and approaches when making feature-length narrative films. In Reframing Reality, Alison Frank looks specifically at French and Czech films, including works by Luis Buñuel, Jan Švankmajer, as well as the contemporary hit Amélie by Jean-Pierre Jeunet, in order to offer a new take on surrealist film.

216 pages | 2 halftones | 7 x 9 | © 2013

Art: Art Criticism

Film Studies

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Table of Contents



Chapter 1: Surrealist Objects and Cinema

             The notion of the surrealist object

            The hybrid object versus the surrealist object; cinema versus surrealism

            Objects in surrealist cinema: Un Chien andalou

Chapter 2: Style and the Hybrid Object in Á Nous la liberté

            Style in Á Nous la liberté

            Object analysis

Chapter 3: The Everyday and the Hybrid Object in the Czech New Wave and Jan Švankmajer

            The context of a cultural renewal

            Czech surrealism from its beginnings to the 1960s

            Common concerns of Czech surrealism and Czech New Wave

            Hybrid objects and the Czech New Wave

            Hybrid Objects and Jan Švankmajer’s short films of the 1960s

Chapter 4: Genre and the Hybrid Object in Late Bunuel

            Generic hybridity and subjectivity in the 1930s and 60s

            Le Charme discret de la bourgeoisie

            Belle de Jour

            Cet obscure objet du désir

Chapter 5: Media Objects in Le Fabuluex destin d’Amélie Poulain

            Jean-Pierre Jeunet and René Clair

            Cinéma du look


            Media of expression and communication as objects




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