Philosophy of Film Course

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Philosophyof Film



Alarge portion of the imaginative innovations in the CitizenKanefilm that have been recorded about and in this way attributed toWelles have their backgrounds in the headway of Toland`s work. Thedominant position of most critics and theorists are summed up byLaura Mulvey in the discussion of 1992 of the film in BFI FilmClassic: CitizenKane,where she is seen to ponder about the origin in regards to the scriptis insignificant, as the movie is the last article of Welles`creation. In the midst of the profound respect massed on Welles, itcan`t be sufficiently exaggerated that Kanewas his first movie and depending considerably on his cameraoperator. Contentions pursued over the creation of the script ofKane.Be that as it may, a couple of discussions have been made about thevisual style of the film.

Thelow camera positions usage generates dynamic compositions.

Thisitself shows a complete inadequacy of awareness with thecinematographers` contribution to the film. The aesthetic that thefilm sticks to is Toland`s, set up over ten years of shooting movies.This is what is established, not just to give Toland the creativecredits that he merits, however, highlights by occurrence how movieproducers have always been neglected, and authorship frequentlymistakenly attributed Roof sets, long makes of ceaseless move and lowcamera edges have often cited for its use in staging depth Kane,The low camera positions usage generates dynamic compositions. Tolandfrequently referenced as a &quottechnician&quot who aided Welles inrealizing his idea, in spite of the fact that he should be referredto as a co-creator of the film.

AgainKane is noted for its low angle shots usage, especially theutilization of raised roofs, getting the cameras at floor level.Often Toland uses a lower angle, looking up at the actors, givingthem a more significant and power at particular moments in thedescriptions. CitizenKane anobject lesson in a combination of Mankiewicz’s writings,collaborative filmmaking, Toland’s topography, Ferguson’sdesigns, Welles’ direction and of course Wise’s editing. Themajor issues clouding this conclusion consistently, however, are thesurprisingly, Welles’ boldness and the generalization of thefilmmaking procedure characteristic in the auteur theory. Beforelong, the film can make essential contributions to a philosophicalinquiry by presenting narratives that introduce philosophicalthought-experiments.Affirmingcreative knowledge for Toland,in summation, there is a reasonable suitable film rationale. Theakward nature of film involves that it can`t make the general andunequivocal claimscharacteristic of philosophy.


Philosophyof film is today firmly recognized as a sub-field of modern-dayphilosophy of art. Although many philosophers were among the pioneersin publishing the first academics of the new art form in the earlierdecades of the twentieth century, however, the new field newexperience significant growth till the ‘80s during a renaissanceoccurrence. Many factors have led to the area’s recent growth. Boththe cultural role film plays in society and academic philosophy, ingeneral, made it imperative for philosophers to take the movieseriously as an art form on par with the most traditional ones likedance, painting, and theatre. Because of this surge in interest infilm as a field of philosophy reflection, film theory is now asignificant area of aesthetics research. The film can be attributedto having more benefits over academic philosophical texts. Theirpopularity, vivacity, and accessibility explain how they givephilosophical problems a “human garb” making them seem less of a“mock fight” as cited by Wartenberg.

Justifyingthe claim that films deserve to be regarded an autonomous art form,scholars explored the ontological edifice of the movie. The aim wasto advance a conception of film that made it clear that it varied inimportance ways from other fine arts. For this purpose, the questionof films nature was a key one for theorists of film through what wemight call the classic era. We are provoked to see the interpretiverole that we play. Interestingly, the accounts Jeff builds regularlyseem to reflect his yearnings and nerves.

SinceJeff is displayed as a surrogate of the cinemagoer, we are invited toregard our engagement with the film varying media presentationsimilarly. This uncovers understanding into how we shape convictionsaround a motion picture episodic reality something we may call theepistemology of film. Jeff comes out as the active beneficiary of thehappenings in his neighborhood. He eagerly hopes to acquire evidence,at times he is inclined to choose audio evidence but at most times heprefers visual, then forms possible depictions of to showcase what heobserves. The movie`s story is sufficiently the account of Jeff`sunderstandings of what he sees.


Recently,in film philosophical analysis, there have been many debates onimagination. Scholars, such as Murray Smith, Gregory Curry andRichard Allen all implement the theory of creativity in explainingvarious ways the mind relates to objects portrayed in moviesprojected onto a display. These philosophical tactics tend toreference results from the cognitive psychology and are frequentlyoffered as substitutions to psychoanalytic methods to movies in whichthe movie is supposed to be a ‘creative signifier’ that behavesas the viewers’ unconscious. The term imagination does not appearto be useful in explaining how the human brain performs when watchinga movie since it predicts a faculty we use when relating to objectsnot as they appear themselves. However, images provoking fantasy andneed aesthetic stance. Though, relations to imagination as what aidshumans to place themselves in place of another (Smith 1997), or whatallows us to see we are viewing rather real (Allen 1997), or as theunconscious part that is put into action when viewing a movie, doactually articulate roles of a certain form of cognition, theseimagination usages are not unique to watching movies. The mind’sability to put ourselves in place of others or to have ourunconscious put into action is what makes fiction in general useful,and the ability to imagine viewing something is also used inphotography and painting.

Ihave confidence in Kant’s theory of imagination can be used in thephilosophy of film. This way of the comprehending film is necessarysince it aids viewers to define the objective properties of cinemacreating purpose irrespective of any psychology the watcher may ormay not hold. Kant’s theory of the imagination can do this becauseit considers the imagination to be a transcendental part of the mind.I will now argue that films can be viewed as products of theimagination, comprehended in the Kantian sense as a series ofillustration that is organized in time according to the guidelines.By seeing the film in this way, the imagination that I am referencingis not the particular imagination of the viewer who receives orwatches the movie. Hence, Kant referred the transcendentalimagination ‘productive,’ since it is what produces a unifiedimage, or appearance in a particular schema of time (Kant 1997). Noris the subjective, individual imagination of whoever makes the film.In accordance to Kant, not referencing the form of creativity that ispart of our psychology, what, in the commonplace of the word,generating whimsical fantasies.

Suchfilms schemas of time are exposed during those instants in a moviewhen the Kantian cognitive organization of the imagination is in apredicament concerning the consistent line of time and the typicalrules of thought. The vision is incapable to follow the normativerules of thought to create the figure of a real familiar object. Freefrom this regulation, however, the imagination comes up with forms ofits own. As with many of Hitchcock’s movies, The Lady Vanisheshighlights and comments on complications unique to the medium of filmitself. I believe that this movie can be understood to be commentingon the very problems that can arise concerning the cognitive role ofthe imagination. The determination of such difficulties isillustrated within the form of the film medium itself. In my argumentof The Lady Vanishes, I will, therefore, refer to the drama that ispresented in the movie to demonstrate the philosophical difficultiesassociated with the imagination. It should be kept in mind, however,that I am using this film as an example of all-purpose processes thatare at work in all films. These are the means by which original formsof time make it likely for a film to have to mean in the first place.


Mulvey,L. (1992) BFI Film Classics: Citizen Kane. UK: BFI.

Salt,B. (2009), Film Style and Technology. Third Edition, UK: Starword.

Bordwell,David (1997) Film Art: An Introduction, Fifth Edition, New York:McGraw-Hill.

Frampton,Daniel (2006) Filmosophy. London: Wallflower Press.

Sarris,Andrew (2004) “Notes on the Auteur Theory in 1962” in Film Theoryand Criticism(sixth edition). Eds. Leo Braudy and MarshallCohen. Oxford: Oxford University Press,561-564.

Listof Film Stills

4,5, 10, 15, 16. Citizen Kane, 1941, (35mm) Directed by Orson Welles.RKO: USA.

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