Playing the Waves: Lars von Trier's Game Cinema (Amsterdam by Jan Simons

By Jan Simons

Dogma ninety five, the avant-garde filmmaking circulation based by way of the Danish director Lars von Trier and 3 of his fellow administrators, was once introduced in 1995 at an elite cinema convention in Paris—when von Trier was once known as upon to discuss the way forward for movie yet in its place showered the viewers with pamphlets saying the hot circulate and its manifesto. A refreshingly unique serious remark at the director and his perform, taking part in the Waves is a paramount addition to 1 of recent media’s such a lot provocative genres: video games and gaming.   Playing the Waves cleverly puns at the name of 1 of von Trier’s most renowned gains and argues that Dogma ninety five, like a lot of the director’s in your price range realist productions, is a video game that takes cinema past the normal confines of movie aesthetics and dramatic rules.  Simons articulates the ways that von Trier redefines the perform of filmmaking as a rule-bound task, and stipulates the types and constructions of video games von Trier brings to endure on his movies, in addition to the sobering classes he attracts from monetary and evolutionary video game idea. very like the director’s movies, this attention-grabbing quantity takes the conventional standpoint of movie concept and movie aesthetics to the subsequent point and demonstrates we have now a lot to benefit from the viewpoint of video game stories and video game concept.

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Additional info for Playing the Waves: Lars von Trier's Game Cinema (Amsterdam University Press - Film Culture in Transition)

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This implicates cutting out the usual aesthetic means of adding sound, light, make up, ‘mise en scene’. In addition, it gives more time to improvise the acting, because there are no breaks for hair, make up, light and costume change. Another point is that the handheld camera gives the actors more freedom and space to really impersonate and act out their characters, since the camera follows the actor instead of the opposite (von Trier and Vinterberg b). Props, décor, costumes and hairstyles, as computer game designers have long appreciated, are no more than incidental, superficial, and outward features of what good old-fashioned structuralist semiotics called ‘transformations’ and ‘actants’ (see Greimas ), embodied at the manifest surface level by the actions and appearances of the actors.

A story is a series of temporally sequential and causally related events. Because cause necessarily precedes effect, and can therefore only be identified as a cause if the effect demonstrably takes place, a story can only be told in retrospect, after hindsight has reconstructed the chain of causal links which led to the final situation (see Bal ; Danto ; Martin ). This retrospective temporality is therefore an ‘essential parameter of narrativity’ (Gaudreault : ). It enables the storyteller to establish a causal sequence linking the beginning of the story to its conclusion, and to distinguish the events that are necessary to this sequence from those that simply fill the spaces between ‘core functions’ (Barthes ).

However, the Dogma  Manifesto does not mention stylistic devices, visual habits or ambiguity, but does mention production methods, the use of techniques, and the simplicity of production means. The Manifesto rules do not aim to change the audience’s visual habits, but rather the concepts, habits and working methods of the filmmaker. The Dogma treatment is not intended to make film viewers aware that films are artefacts based on contingent codes, but to allow filmmakers to undergo a detoxification that allows them to discover that stan- The Name of this Game is Dogma 95 37 dard production methods and techniques are not the only ones that promise satisfactory results.

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