Apertúra Film-Vizualitás-Elmélet
Winter 2011 | Nyomtatás |

Terry Castle:  Phantasmagoria: Spectral Technology and the Metaphorics of Modern Reverie

The article is an exploration of the meanings of a notion within the frame of the history of ideas, overviewing the eighteenth and nineteenth century history of the term phantasmagoria. Significant changes can be detected in the meaning of the term: initially it referred to an artificially produced "spectral" illusion, to designate the laterna magica shows of ambivalent effect, which were supposedly parts of a scientific argument against superstition. Later on, however, the same notion started to refer to something interior and subjective, to the visions of the mind. The article documents this change through detailed illustrations, and presents an archaeological examination of the nineteenth century meanings of imagination and fantasy. Full text in Hungarian

Annamária Hódosy: The Predator is Alien, or Emancipation vs. Reproduction science fiction in a horror frame

The paper analyzes the Alien- and the Predator-series as metaphoric explorations of the "problem" of the "modern woman". Although it is usually accepted in criticism that the figure of the Alien is an allegory of the "monstrous feminine" and the devouring aspect of female sexuality, in this paper a female point of view is assumed, modelled by the unprecedentedly "strong" female heroine, Ellen Ripley. While the Alien may represent the castrating mother for a male audience, for a female one it rather represents the horrors of pregnancy and of motherhood, the fear of which can be documented in all segments of our present culture. Ripley's fight with the Alien is the parable of the modern woman who wants to live an autonomous, sexually active and self-assertive life, but can do it only by rejecting the reproductive aspect of her femininity, and by developing into a kind of cloned, ever-young (and ever beautiful) cyborg-like creature, the representation of which also comments on the role of the beauty industry. The Predator films seem to deal with a male subculture focusing on male protagonists only. The figure of the Predator, however, can also be treated as the representation of the Phallic Mother, which has to be rejected in favour of being initiated into the state of potent "manhood". This aspects of the Predator may be proved by its similarities with the figure of the mythic Medusa and her combat with Perseus, while the interpretation of this story by Freud can be used to enlighten the symbolic level of the narrative of the Predator films, which therefore can be read as the story of the devaluation of women during the development of men's subjectivity.  The first Alien vs. Predator film creates a link not only between the two stories but also between their metaphoric meanings.  In this movie the Predator appears as a partner of a human heroine against the Alien, which reassures the cultural message according to which reproduction must be erased from the life of a modern woman in order to prevent becoming a "monster" and instead gaining a male subjectivity. The "value" of this female subject, however, is paradoxically measured by her technically enhanced beauty, which is represented by the technically enhanced abilities of the Predator. Full text in Hungarian

Péter Molnár: Two contemporary American fantasies

The paper offers the psychoanalytic and postcolonial analysis of two mainstream Hollywood movies. Its analytic base is provided by the Freudian understanding of the term fantasy. The crucial theoretical question of the article targets the ways in which this understanding can be used as a key term of a culturalist discourse. Spike Jonze's movie Where the Wild Things Are can be viewed as the alterego of Cameron's  Avatar. The former movie points to the bizarre images of the Other behind the inspiring and colourful fantasy images. While Where Wild Things Are reflects on this ambivalent relationship with these images, Avatar can be defined as an attempt towards the negation of the same ambivalence. Full text in Hungarian

György Kalmár: The latest loci of horror (Contemporary displacements of the werewolf-motif and the morphology of horror)

The following article investigates the contemporary displacements of the werewolf-motif, mainly apropos of Joe Johnston's Wolfman (2010), and mostly from a post-structuralist psychoanalytic perspective, relying also on the insights of feminist film theory. The analysis of the film comes across a number of theoretical questions, such as the post-feminist resignification of fatherhood, the connections between the concepts of the abject and the sublime. The article also examines ways in which the genre of the psychoanalytical case study may be integrated with that of the horror film, as well as connections between the monster and the female gaze. Full text in Hungarian

Ádám Gaborják: Hooked on Horror. Adaptation, repetition and the uncanny in Gergely Vida's  Horror klasszikusok  [Horror Classics]

The paper focuses on the new book of the young Hungarian poet Gergely Vida entitled Horror classics. Vida has an outstandingly individual voice in the context of contemporary postmodern poetry. His new book is a literary anthology about horror movies, especially such cult grindhouse directors as Wes Craven, George Romero, or John Carpenter. With the help of these texts we can rethink the question of literary adaptation. It is argued that the use of intertextuality and the technical language of the visual medium manipulate fantastic and uncanny effect of horror movies. Full text in Hungarian

Marc Vernet: The filmic transaction

Vernet defines the abrupt change which disturbs the peace of the initial sequences and cuts the ground from under the spectator's feet as an essential characteristic of film noir. After the inexplicable irruption of the second part (the "black hole" - "pot au noir") the enigma turns to be the task of rendering a logical connection between these incongruent sections, finding out a way to dissolve the incest and reestablish the initial tranquility of the situation. Full text in Hungarian

Linda Huszár: Canon, genre and a novel by Rejtő: A Néma Revolverek Városa [The City of Silent Revolvers]

This essay gets to the interpretation of The City of the Silent Revolvers by reacting upon Rejtő's position in literary history and by analyzing the aspects of canon and genre. Besides the structure of the different genres, it also deals with the specific "narrative humour" of the novel, and it tries to offer an alternative to the recurrent question in the context of Rejtő‘s reception (whether his texts should be read as pulp fiction or rather as parodies of the same) by offering a burlesque reading. Full text in Hungarian

László Sinkovicz: Dissection table in black and white and in colour (Attila Gigor: The Investigator)

Attila Gigor's film entitled The Investigator was released in 2008 as a renewal of the Hungarian noir. However, its definition as noir, and in general, defining the noir as a genre is considerably problematic. The aim of this study is to examine whether Gigor's film can be regarded as noir indeed, or whether it is crime fiction, or 'guilt movie'. It analyses, on the one hand, the possible consequences of considering the film not exclusively in its filmic context, while on the other it focuses on the way the director of the film gathers inspiration from the antecedents of the genre. Full text in Hungarian

Otilia Ivetta Horváth: Smile, the camera is on. Tibor Hajas: Fashion Show of the Self

Through the analysis of Tibor Hajas's movie entitled Fashion Show of the Self, the paper examines the logic of the cinematic medium, the relationship between reality and fiction. At the level of media, the author does not make a distinction between a documentary and a fiction film. The former mostly strengthens the viewer's idea of reality. This idea may be strengthened or weakened by the cinematic tools that explore the manipulation possibilities of the filmic medium. Manipulation, which cannot be foregone, in the end will question the documentarist omnipotence of representing reality. Full text in Hungarian