The idea of cinephilia is a crucial one for students of the cinema, but it is often associated with a bygone arthouse era. At the beginning of the twenty-first century, corporatism, public relations and bottom-line accounting seem to govern mainstream film-making. Formula-driven Hollywood blockbusters dominate the world marketplace. In times like these can 'the love of cinema' still flourish? In fact contemporary cinema is stunningly varied and rich. From Taiwan and Iran to Brazil and the Baltic states, it is flourishing and constantly mutating. Directors like Abbas Kiarostami, Hou Hsiao-hsien and Tsai Ming-liang are making extraordinary films that are the equal of the great classics, previously unrecognised works from the past are being discovered, and new definitions and boundaries of genres are being formulated. Even when this work is not widely distributed it is seen at film festivals on every continent and available on DVD; and it is being discussed in a proliferating number of print and web publications. Those who follow and share such work, as contributors from around the world demonstrate in this book, are forming new kinds of critical communities that enable significant exchanges between cultures at a time when other forces seem bent on keeping them mutually isolated. In contrast to any talk of 'the death of cinema', Movie Mutations pronounces the art form alive, well, and still developing in new and unforeseen directions. In weaving together transnational discussions and debates, Movie Mutations shows why the idea of cinephilia is just as relevant today as it ever was.
Jonathan Rosenbaum is film critic for the Chicago Reader and author of Movie Wars (2002) and Dead Man (BFI Modern Classics, 2000), among many other books. Adrian Martin is film critic for The Age (Melbourne) and author of a study of Terrence Malick forthcoming from bfi Publishing.
Preface By Jonathan Rosenbaum and Adrian Martin Chapter 1 Movie Mutations: Letters from (and to) Some Children of 1960 Jonathan Rosenbaum, Adrian Martin, Kent Jones, Alexander Howarth, Nicole Brenez and Raymond Bellour (1997) Chapter 2 Open Spaces in Iran: A Conversation with Abbas Kiarostami Jonathan Rosenbaum (with Mehrnaz Saeed-Vafa) (1998-2001) Chapter 3 Here and There: The Films of Tsai Ming-liang Kent Jones (1998-2002) Chapter 4 Sampling in Rotterdam Jonathan Rosenbaum (1998) Chapter 5 Two Auteurs I. Discovering Yasuzo Masumura: Reflections on Work in Progress Jonathan Rosenbaum (1999-2001) II. Dialogue on Howard Hawks and Yasuzo Masumura Shigehiko Hasumi and Jonathan Rosenbaum (1999) III. Inversion/Exchange/Repetition: The Comedy of Howard Hawks Shigehiko Hasumi (2000) IV. Epilogue Shigehiko Hasumi and Jonathan Rosenbaum (2002) Chapter 6 Musical Mutations: Before, Beyond and Against Hollywood Adrian Martin (2000-2002) Chapter 7 Squaring The Circle Jonathan Rosenbaum (2000) Chapter 8 The Future of Academic Film Study Adrian Martin and James Naremore (2001-2002) Chapter 9 On Four Prosaic Formulas Which Might Summarise Hou's Poetics Fergus Daly (2001-2002) Chapter 10 Movies Go Multinational Natasa Durovicova and Jonathan Rosenbaum (2001-2002) Chapter 11 Circumatlantic Media Migrations Catherine Benamou and Lucia Saks (2002) Chapter 12 Movie Mutations: Second Round Quintin, Mark Peranson, Nicole Brenez, Adrian Martin and Jonathan Rosenbaum (2001-2002)