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So, after a weekend of agonizing over final research paper topics I hit on something that I found particularly interesting, especially in light of watching Memento and reading about temporality in films. It got me thinking about films where the temporality is more complex than simpleflashbacks or moving back in time from one characters point-of-view (I know this is a loaded term, but for lack of a better turn of phrase it will have to suffice). I was thinking especially about the films of director Allejandro Gonzalez Innaritu and screenwriter Guillermo Arriaga. It seems to me that the temporal complexity in these films opperates differently than the other films we have watched. They aren’t puzzles like Memento, nor do they utilize flashbacks or multiple contemporaneous stories. They jump back and forth in time with little regard for when or why they make these temporal leaps. So, if their temporal structure isn’t operating like any of the other films we have watched or discussed, how does their temporal structure work?

The temporal complexity in films like 21 Grams and Babel were topics of controversy upon their release, so I think that how their temporal structure (or lack thereof) opporates would be a particularly interesting topic to explore.

2 Responses to “A Paper Topic Idea”

  1. Jason – this is a good topic, with a good intersection of narrative form and notions of authorship. How much do our authorial expectations of their films shape our comprehension of their temporality? I think the latter part of the Bordwell book will be helpful in analyzing these films, and I’m sure there is some film scholarship on them. Good luck!

  2. Hey Jason. I was really intrigued by the temporality portion of this class too. A film that struck me like lightening (and i mean i couldn’t move and was stuck to the couch for a good hour after the film) is Gaspar Noe’s Irreversible. It’s different from InnaritĂș and the movies you cited but it might be good research to see something similar to Momento.

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