(sub)Text: A Discussion of Todd Phillips’ Film ‘Joker’

Wes Alwan and William Sharp (psychoanalyst and professor at Northeastern) discuss the film at the Boston Graduate School of Psychoanalysis

Why has this film done so well? It offers no spectacle, and good doesn’t triumph. It is psychologically true and expertly performed. The audience can enjoy tragedy and identify deeply with a social outcast and villain. The film successfully exploits the relationship between humor and violence, and comedy and tragedy.

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Ep. 190: Film Analysis: “mother!”

On Darren Aronofsky’s philosophical 2017 film about humanity’s relationship to nature. We discuss the philosophical content of the film (Gnosticism, anyone?) and explore the relation between meaning and the sensuous aspects of an artwork. Can a work be both allegorical and yet have fully fleshed out characters and the other elements that make a film feel real? This was a very polarizing film; how do the circumstances of viewing affect reception? With guest Tim Nicholas.

End song: “The Day of Wrath, That Day,” by Sarah McQuaid, as interviewed on Nakedly Examined Music #72.

Please support PEL! Citizens and $5 Patreon supporters will get access to a bonus discussion on identity politics this week.

Sponsors: Free month trial of The Great Courses +: thegreatcoursesplus.com/PEL. St. John’s College: partiallyexaminedlife.com/sjc.

Episode 190: Film Analysis: “mother!” (Citizen Edition)

On Darren Aronofsky’s philosophical 2017 film about humanity’s relationship to nature. We discuss the philosophical content of the film (Gnosticism, anyone?) and explore the relation between meaning and the sensuous aspects of an artwork. Can a work be both allegorical and yet have fully fleshed out characters and the other elements that make a film feel real? This was a very polarizing film; how do the circumstances of viewing affect reception? With guest Tim Nicholas.

End song: “The Day of Wrath, That Day,” by Sarah McQuaid, as interviewed on Nakedly Examined Music #72.

Art, Authenticity, and Film

The Romantic film-philosophy of Cavell, Mulhall, Sinnerbrink, and Smith completes the triangulation of values among the ethical, cognitive, and aesthetic: in the same way that film links Smith’s innovations in the disciplines of aesthetics, philosophy, and culture, authenticity links the ethical, cognitive, and aesthetic values of film.

Episode 169: Analyzing Hitchcock’s “Vertigo” (Part One)

On the 1958 film and articles including Laura Mulvey’s “Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema” (1975) and Robin Wood’s “Vertigo” (1965). What is love? Are we really just loving a built image while remaining isolated? And is it just an illusionary social construct that keeps us all from feeling fundamental vertigo? Lacan, existentialism, and more!

Part 2 is for supporters only! It won’t be on the public feed, so get the full discussion now at patreon.com/partiallyexaminedlife or through a PEL Citizenship.

Ep. 169: Analyzing Hitchcock’s “Vertigo” (Citizen Edition)

On the 1958 film and articles including Laura Mulvey’s “Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema” (1975) and Robin Wood’s “Vertigo” (1965). What’s the nature of love/lust? Are we really just loving an image we’ve built while remaining fundamentally isolated? And is it just an illusionary social construct that keeps us all from feeling fundamental vertigo? Lacan, existentialism, and more!

End song: “Wrong Pill” by Sacrifice (aka Tyler Hislop). Hear him on Nakedly Examined Music #24.