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Author: Derek Schilling

The book aims to provide a balanced appraisal of Eric Rohmer's oeuvre in historical context. Although interpretation of individual films will not be its main objective, representative examples from the director's twenty-five features and fiction shorts will be presented throughout. The focus is on production history and reception in the mainstream French press. This key stylistic editing trait cannot be appreciated without reference to André Bazin's concept of ontological realism, of which Rohmer was a major exponent at Cahiers du cinéma. To establish the intertexts and artistic principles his films put into play, the book reviews the abundant critical writings Rohmer published in France from the late 1940s to the early 1960s. It explores how sound and image are configured, and to what effect. The book then broaches issues central to the director's finest work for the screen. 'Seriality and theme', devoted to the Contes moraux, Comédies et proverbes, and Contes des quatre saisons, looks at how Rohmer's decision to work by thematic series forces the viewer to intuit relations of complementarity, identity, and opposition that lend each cycle a complex, musical texture. It pays close attention to four of the director's costume films. The book concludes with a brief excursus on le rohmérien, that inimitable, instantly recognisable variant of the French language that spectators come to love or to hate.

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Derek Schilling

unmanageable, body of work. Paradoxically, among the most significant obstacles faced by Rohmer’s viewer is the apparent transparency of the films themselves, or the effacement of the camera’s presence through editing. This key stylistic trait cannot be appreciated without reference to André Bazin’s concept of ontological realism, of which Rohmer was a major exponent at Cahiers du cinéma . To establish the

in Eric Rohmer
Stefania Parigi

couple’ and the mostrum created by Andy Warhol in 1963 with Sleep . But on an ethical as well as aesthetic grounds, he shared most with the phenomenology of Bazin and his ontological realism. The idea of a cinema with a duration opposed to that of classical editing is linked for Zavattini and Bazin to a desire to be caught up in the seamlessness of existence in order to grasp the experience of it before grasping its sense

in Cinema – Italy
Cinematic realism, philosophical realism and film theory
Ian Aitken

characterize what there is, as having no definite characteristics before we apply our conceptual system. 61 Representational realism is, and must be, a species of metaphysical realism, and both must also be forms of ontological realism. However, whilst representational realism accepts both the existence of external reality (it is a form of ontological realism) and

in Realist film theory and cinema
Derek Schilling

see that despite the enthusiasm for Hollywood he shared with the Young Turks, Rohmer remains at base a Bazinian, for whom the cinema is inseparable from the belief in the camera’s capacity for revealing the world in a manner unique among the arts. Ontological realism and technical change Efforts toward the postwar reconstruction of France went beyond removing rubble from bombed

in Eric Rohmer
Abstract only
Derek Schilling

between flyovers (Hertay 1998 : 116). Here, the cult of direct sound prompts modifications in staging and in editing. In the end, Rohmer’s experiments with direct sound betray the contradictions of ontological realism. Sound recording and mixing tear us away from the phenomenal real with the same violence as does standard cinematography, however ‘objective’ the means employed. The fact that Rohmer records all source materials

in Eric Rohmer
Objects, affects, mimesis
Simon Mussell

not only forestalls the possible idolatry of subjectless objects (a risk not heeded in the political ecology of Jane Bennett, or in the ontological realism of Levi Bryant); it also dethrones the atomized, constitutive, bourgeois subject. This dialectic marks out early critical theory as being particularly attuned to the materiality, contested historicity, and utopian possibility sedimented in the object world, especially as it is given unique form and expression through aesthetics. Such awareness is replete with political implications and intent. It charges our

in Critical theory and feeling