What is the representation of reality in Cinema? How is it represented? Representation of reality in the films we have viewed thus far, was seen in the form of expressionism, self-reflexivity, and realism. Recognizing the less stringent censorship of European filmmaking, paired with a disquieting whimsical sense-i.e. that personal vison and style of the auteur, life is depicted as it really is in all of its crude and graphicness. We are delivered the real deal, the nitty gritty, that which Hollywood “movies” tend to leave out, (the stories of common folk, the victims of war, greed, and disparity). All of these characteristics are evidenced in Night and Fog, Nasty Girl, Baader Meinhoff Complex, and Hate.
First form of representation of reality- expressionism was evident in all four films in that the audience is not told straight out what to feel but rather let the visuals whether they be distorted or real footage establish the extreme emotional, mental and social state of mind of the protagonists. The dehumanization of German prisoners at Nazi camps, Sonya’s paranoia, the insane acts by radicals Baader and Gudrun and of course in Hate, all three characters channeled their hopelessness right into the viewer’s psyche; German and French expressionism at its best (reminder--as far as I have seen).
Secondly, self-reflexivity was a technique widely seen in all of the films. For example, in Nasty Girl, Sonya winks at the camera, and chats with the audience often. In Night and Fog the narrator reads a poem with no intonation, almost as if he were reading it to himself. In Baader Meinhof, we hear what’s going on in the minds of the characters. And finally in Hate, so many indirect, yet direct scenes from the mirror scene, to close ups of their faces, no words necessary, just to look in their eyes and they’ve said 1000 words.
And lastly, when it comes to historical and documentary realism, the use of authentic settings, non-professional actors and social reality as shown in Night and Fog-with glimpses of the Holocaust Nazi camps woven with what is now a calm and barren terrain. Or in Nasty Girl, with the art direction/oddities that played in the backdrop of the film (Joan of Arc), or her couch surfing around the city and the banlieues in Paris,…