Essay on The Romantic Notion of a Film Director

2217 Words9 Pages
The intention of this essay is to discuss the romantic notion of a film director who has etched their own cinematic vision into the body of their film work, and whether the theory and practice is dead and an infringement of the spectator’s imagination and is it the spectator who finds meaning in the film. I will be closely looking at critical material, primarily André Bazin and Roland Barthes and applying them to several case study films directed by Christopher Nolan including The Following (1998), The Prestige (2006) and Inception (2010), to examine whether Nolan possesses the qualities of an auteur and if so, does that imply an ideological view of what the auteur resembles or an artistic one. The term auteur theory arose in France…show more content…
Barthes claims that the author is dead (Barthes, 1977: 208), a theoretical construction that perceives the director as an idea, whereas, Bazin’s principle method establishes cinematic realism.
The romantic idea of the auteur is described by film theoretician, André Bazin, observing the film form as an idealistic phenomenon. Through the personal factor in artistic creation as a standard reference, Bazin primarily refers to an essential literary and romantic conception of the artist as central. He considers the relationship between film aesthetics and reality more important than the director itself and places cinema above paintings. He described paintings as a similar ethical creation to film stating a director ‘can be valued according to its measurements and the celebrity of the signature, the objective quality of the work itself was formerly held in much higher esteem.’ (Bazin, 1967: 250). Bazin contemplates the historical and social aspects that indeed hinder a director’s retribution to their own personalised film, thus en-companying their own ideological judgement upon the world ‘more so in cinema where the sociological and historical cross-currents are countless.’ (Bazin, 1967: 256)
Critic Roland Barthes, on the other hand, disagrees with the romantic notion and concludes that the auteur is dead.

More about Essay on The Romantic Notion of a Film Director

Get Access