- Taschenbuch: 88 Seiten
- Verlag: British Film Institute; Auflage: 1999 (1. April 1999)
- Sprache: Englisch
- ISBN-10: 0851707238
- ISBN-13: 978-0851707235
- Größe und/oder Gewicht: 14,6 x 0,6 x 27,4 cm
- Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 2 Kundenrezensionen
- Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 597.734 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)
- Komplettes Inhaltsverzeichnis ansehen
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Seven (BFI Film Classics) (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 1. April 1999
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"It's a model analysis of a film . . . shrewd observations . . . forensically perceptive."--"Empire
Gluttony, greed, sloth, lust, pride, envy, wrath. A serial killer on a warped moral mission who turns his victims' "sins" into the means of their murder. The movie "Seven" is analysed here covering topics such as sin, story, structure, seriality, sound, sight and salvation.Alle Produktbeschreibungen
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Perhaps part of the problem is that Dyer does not go too far into the background and pre-production aspects of the film - which is unusual for the BFI series - and when he does it tends to be trivia that most casual fans of the film are already aware of, such as Brad Pitt requiring in his contract that the ending not be changed. Instead, Dyer sends the majority of his time buried deep within the film itself. This shouldn't be detrimental considering the depth of the source material, but just like gazing into the abyss, sometimes you need some distance for perspective, or else you might get sucked in.
The critical analysis is detailed, as stated before, but there are some points at which it seems to lose focus, or even worse, focus too hard. Dyer's insistence on comparing the Somerset/Mills dynamic to Lethal Weapon and other 'Wise Older Black Cop/Wild Young White Cop' films seems misguided considering the overall lack of comparison to other buddy-cop action franchises (outside of the similar stereotypes), and that comparison is belabored far longer than it deserves. Dyer does this on occasion, clinging to an idea far longer than it deserves, such as a repetitive paragraph on "pre-text" that stretches on long enough to feel more like a Dr. Seuss parody. His chapter on Seriality, which delves into the serial killer aspect of John Doe, references both real-life examples and fictional film representations of serial killers, but doesn't quite attempt to discern the difference between the two (for an excellent example of comparing a cinematic killer to a real world counterpart, check out the BFI Classic Film series book on Fritz Lang's M). The overall effect is that Dyer spends half of the time communicating to the reader, and the other half impressing himself.
These criticisms aside, there is depth, detail, and analysis worth witnessing in Dyer's book, and it is still a worthy entry into the BFI series. Perhaps, in the end, Seven is a film that is ultimately underwhelming when dissected academically, but only because experiencing the film is an education in itself.
Dyer calls 'Se7en' 'a landscape of despair, a symphony of sin', a film 'extraordinarily un-American in its pessimism'. Appropriately dividing his study into 7 sibilantly-titled chapters, he examines it from an exhaustive number of angles. 'Se7en' is an archetypal serial killer movie that focuses on white male alienation in contemporary urban society, but is also a denial of the genre, refusing to demonise the murderer, suggesting he is simply an over-enthusiastic law-enforcer with the same attitude to the corruption of modern urban life as the policemen. Dyer shows how, through dialogue, script-structure and editing, the killer is connected to both detectives pursuing him. He shows how Andrew Kevin Walker's brilliantly constructed script both imposes order on unmanagable violence and despair, and denies it (I can't say how just in case you haven't seen the film). He examines the notion of 'sin' in a post-modern, post-religious world, with the minimal possibilities of salvation - religion, culture, human goodness - offered. He is particularly good on his own areas of expertise - star personae, race and sexuality.
Dyer thinks 'Se7en' is a Great Movie that does what Art should, exagerrating or heightening negative feelings about the world we live in that we suppress daily to survive. He treats 'Se7en' so seriously he even includes a 'map' to the narrative like those you get with Dante's 'Divine Comedy', and compares its climactic power to 'King Lear'. But for all his tireless analysis of the film, Dyer simply reinforces what it says on the surface. There is no subtext - every element, from script to theme to technical cinematic realisation simply reflects what we see, the direction dutifully and literally realising the script. Surely a classic film is one open to alternative interpretations, one that can be read against the grain, opening up a space for different kinds of viewing or viewers, one that on each re-viewing will reveal something new, deepening or complicating our first impressions? Nothing Dyer writes with such eloquence or enthusiasm convinces me that 'Se7en' is such a film.