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Dimitri Vorontzov

Film Interpretation

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Scarlet Street, dir. by Fritz Lang, 1945

Every aspect of a truly artistic film (or a work of art in any medium) should in some way contribute to the key idea expressed in it. The title is no exception. An ideal title should serve as a metaphor for such idea and be constructed in a way that – a) doesn’t reveal the […]

The Woman In The Window, Large Image

The Woman in the Window, 1944

Many film connoisseurs mistakenly qualify “The Woman in the Window” as “minor Fritz Lang”, considering it more mainstream, less original and less art-like compared to Lang’s earlier “Der Müde Tod” (1921), “Dr. Mabuse, der Spieler” (1922), “Die Nibelungen” (1924), “Metropolis” (1927) and “M” (1931). Even critics who acknowledge the importance of “The Woman in the Window” […]

12_Angry_Men

12 Angry Men, dir. by Sidney Lumet, 1957

Works of art in any medium, including film, may be sorted in two broad categories according to the methods chosen by their creators: art addressing intellect and art targeting emotions. Having stated that, I feel I must immediately emphasize that intellectual art obviously doesn’t preclude emotions, and neither is emotional art the enemy of intellect. […]

Dogtooth, Large Image

Dogtooth, dir. by Yorgos Lanthimos, 2009

I want to begin by deciphering the meaning of the film’s iconic logo, used in its opening credits and posters. If we understand the meaning of that image, it will be a lot easier to recognize the message conveyed in this work of cinematic art. Here’s the full image, combined of three elements: In the […]

The Vanishing, Large Image

Spoorloos, dir. by George Sluizer, 1988

A note on the method: one of the key questions we must ask when analyzing any work of art is whether the artist expresses a pessimistic or optimistic point of view. It’s typically “either – or”, because the mixture of both is practically never even, and tends toward either optimism or pessimism (most commonly the […]

La Pianiste, Large Image

La Pianiste, dir. by Michael Haneke, 2001

There’s a certain type of predator whose function is to lure potentially enlightened people away from enlightenment.  The predator, socially deprived of traditional ways to achieve dominance, is motivated by the urge to dominate and will occupy the professional position of authority related to a certain spiritual phenomenon, and will dedicate all its energy to […]

M, by Fritz Lang, 1951 - Large Image

M, dir. by Fritz Lang, 1931

Film storytellers who aim to make strong moral statements may choose to rely on extreme, controversial perspectives in order to get their message across. For example, Liliana Cavani in “The Night Porter” (1974), wishing to express the power of romantic love, selected a Nazi torturer and his female victim as a pair of star-crossed lovers. Similarly, […]

L'Arrivee d'un train en gare de la Ciotat, 1895, Large Image

L’Arrivee d’un train, 1895

My goal in writing this article is to prove that “L’Arrivee d’un train” is remarkable not merely as one of the early examples of moving image, but more importantly, as an early work of cinema as art – thanks to its profound philosophical controlling idea. I know the film in two different versions, marked with the […]

My Left Foot, by Jim Sheridan, 1989 - Large Image

My Left Foot, dir. by Jim Sheridan, 1989

This movie is not a medical drama, as it is sometimes mistakenly categorized, but rather an existential parable, focused on the paradox of spirituality found within the bonds of human condition. Within the material world, we are all crippled: bound in our spiritual pursuit by the limitations of our physical body. The illness of Christy […]