Three audiences in one gaze

July 6, 2009 § Leave a comment

James Card about Clara Bow :

Who’s to say which one of these expressions is more important, aesthetically, than the others ? There’s a lot more ambiguity and incoherence (1) in the Hollywood film text than clean-cut classical models may want to admit.

(1) A quick read on this is Noel Burch, “Double Speak” in Réseaux, n. 99, 2000. It’s a short article, it’s in French but don’t let that stop you. Burch extends the notion of the “incoherent text” (Robin Wood, 1980) to the whole of Hollywood cinema, and finds some room for ambiguity in the negociation process taking place between censors and producers. That concept can easily be extended to other aspects of Hollywood filmmaking. Hurray for distractions !

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