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The Pervert's Guide to Cinema (2006)

Slavoj Zizek examines famous films in a philosophical and a psychoanalytic context.

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THE PERVERT'S GUIDE TO CINEMA takes the viewer on an exhilarating ride through some of the greatest movies ever made. Serving as presenter and guide is the charismatic Slavoj Zizek, acclaimed philosopher and psychoanalyst. With his engaging and passionate approach to thinking, Zizek delves into the hidden language of cinema, uncovering what movies can tell us about ourselves. Whether he is untangling the famously baffling films of David Lynch, or overturning everything you thought you knew about Hitchcock, Zizek illuminates the screen with his passion, intellect, and unfailing sense of humour. THE PERVERT'S GUIDE TO CINEMA cuts its cloth from the very world of the movies it discusses; by shooting at original locations and from replica sets it creates the uncanny illusion that Zizek is speaking from 'within' the films themselves. Together the three parts construct a compelling dialectic of ideas. Described by The Times in London as 'the woman helming this Freudian inquest,' director ... Written by P Guide Ltd.

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16 January 2009 (USA)  »

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Manual de cine para pervertidos  »

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[first lines]
Slavoj Zizek: Cinema is the art of appearances, it tells us something about reality itself. It tells us something about how reality constitutes itself.
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Very entertaining, though you probably shouldn't take its analysis very seriously
1 February 2014 | by (Buenos Aires, Argentina) – See all my reviews

In this two hours and a half documentary, Slovenian philosopher Slavoj Zizek uses psychoanalytic theory to analyze clips of many classic films. As a theory of human behavior, psychoanalysis is quite outdated, surpassed by more biologically centered theories of the brain. However, psychoanalysis has undeniably influenced many famous directors in the past (for instance, Alfred Hitchcock or David Lynch, and Zizek analyzes here clips of their films), so in this sense this movie is interesting to have a hint of what these directors might be getting at. This film is very entertaining (Zizek is quite a character in his own right, with his thick accent, gesticulating body and wildly hypothetical theories) even if the ideas put forward here are probably wrong and outdated. The films Zizek spent more time analyzing here are Vertigo, Blue Velvet, Psycho, The Birds and Lost Highway, but aside from Hitchcock and Lynch, there are clips from other directors, such as Kubrick, Chaplin, Tarkovsky and others. And in a one of the more interesting parts, he shows us a Disney cartoon from 1935 called Pluto's Last Judgment, and we see how it surprisingly mirrors the Stalinist show trials of a few years later. Sophie Fiennes (sister of Ralph and Joseph) directs. She wisely makes Zizek talk from sets that mimics some of the movies he is analyzing.


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