Comparison Between Orthodox and Critical Realism Essays

Comparison Between Orthodox and Critical Realism Essays

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Realism attempts to rescue this deep, internal sense of loss that is at the heart of modernism. We are living in a world that is accelerating so quickly that it is radicalizing our relationship to the world, causing us to almost disinherit the world. Although we have created it, it also feels like it is stripping us. Realism is the rescue of our souls as it tries to save us from experiencing spiritual danger from losing contact to the real (lecture). The worldview of Realism is one of an immanent perspective; meaning that what is significant in life already exists in the present world, not in the existential imaginary (lecture, w1). Rather than reorganize or redesign reality, realism aims to reveal the world, as if holding up a mirror and showing the reflection of the life itself (lecture w2). There are two main categories of Realism: Orthodox and Critical Realism. They attempt to respect the mise-en-scene by not disrupting the shot, which is mostly done by trying to keep editing and camera work invisible and unnoticeable to the viewer. Both stay true to the qualifications of Realism; however, there are various differences between Orthodox and Critical Realism.
André Bazin, a well-renowned Orthodox Realist, describes true realism as “the need that is to give significant expression to the world both concretely and in its essence.” (FTAC p161) Orthodox realism is to respect, witness, record, and not disrupt what already perfectly exists in this immanent world (lecture, w1). In order to uncover the meaning, spectators must actively search it and decipher the meaning for themselves, which develops an ambiguous participant. Realism does not enforce what is significant in the scene upon the viewer; therefore, this allows the ambiguous ...


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... Realist film. Critical Realism, on the other hand, tends to critique the basic ideologies of Orthodox Realism. Theorists like Henderson disagree on the formal technicalities as to how to best portray Realism. But take Critical Realism a step further, and films like Damnation portray “extreme Realism,” that aims to prove that the world is hopeless and pointless. No matter the stance, realist films have a great respect for mise-en-scene in their efforts to show the meaning of the world.



Works Cited

Braudy, Leo, and Marshall Cohen. Film theory and criticism: introductory readings. 5th ed. New York: Oxford University Press, 1999. Print.

Nichols, Bill. Movies and methods: an anthology. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1976. Print.

Nichols, Bill. Movies and methods: an anthology, Volume II. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1985. Print.

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