The Films of Kore-eda Hirokazu: An Elemental Cinema draws readers into the first 13 feature films and 5 of the documentaries of award-winning Japanese film director Kore-eda Hirokazu. With his recent top prize at the Cannes Film Festival for Shoplifters, Kore-eda is arguably Japan’s greatest living director with an international viewership. He approaches difficult subjects (child abandonment, suicide, marginality) with a realistic and compassionate eye.
The lyrical tone of the writing of Japanese film scholar Linda C. Ehrlich perfectly complements the understated, yet powerful, tone of the films. From An Elemental Cinema, readers will gain a special understanding of Kore-eda’s films through a novel connection to the natural elements as reflected in Japanese traditional aesthetics.
An Elemental Cinema presents Kore-eda’s oeuvre as a connected whole with overarching thematic concerns, despite frequent generic experimentation. It also offers an example of how the poetics of cinema can be practiced in writing, as well as on the screen, and helps readers understand the films of this contemporary director as works of art that relate to their own lives.
The memoirs of Juan Luis Bunuel (b. 1934 in Paris) offer a first-hand look at the life of a vibrant man who has been surrounded by important figures of the twentieth century, including his father Luis Bunuel, Alexander Calder, Joan Miro, and Orson Welles, among many others. A filmmaker, sculptor, painter and raconteur in his own right, Juan Luis's writings reveal a Bunuelian sense of lucid, dark humor and outrage over society's pretensions and inequities. These memoirs, originally written for his children, are here generously offered to the public along with an introduction and a rich selection of illustrations and annotations, assembled by Linda C. Ehrlich."
The 29 prose poems in Cinematic Reveries: Gestures, Stillness, Water provide distinctive points of entry into a select group of films through attention to evocative gestures, a sense of stillness, and images of water. These original writings offer film criticism in a new form, with a tone that is at once exploratory, familiar, and elegiac. They explore the precious nature of water; they point to gestures both eloquent and obscure. They offer us moments of arrested motion as well as longer contemplative sequences in films from Asia, Europe, New Zealand, and the U.S. To cite a sentiment expressed by filmmaker Raúl Ruíz in his Poetics of Cinema 2, these are tributes to great films that «recognize [us] like an old relative». The reader is encouraged to explore Cinematic Reveries as a portrait of the cinema which is at times lyrical, sometimes comic, and often tinged with pathos. This celebration of the art film is richly illustrated, with suggestions for further readings and viewings.
To coincide with the recent DVD release of The Spirit of the Beehive, this paperback collection of essays focuses on the work of acclaimed Spanish director, Victor Erice. Originally published in hardcover under the title An Open Window, this expanded edition draws on original essays, reprints, and new translations from an international group of writers. New to this edition are four essays from noted film scholars including editor Linda C. Ehrlich as well as three added essays from the filmmaker himself. Both the original and new material provide a deeper appreciation of Erice's three feature-length films The Spirit of the Beehive El espiritu de la colmena] (1973), El Sur (1982), and Dream of Light aka The Quince Tree Sun, El sol del membrillo] (1992), as well as his shorter works, including his most recent accomplishment, La morte rouge (2006). This anthology examines the aesthetic, historical, and sociological forces at work in Erice's films and includes an extensive interview with the director. This broad array of writings provides insight into not only three unforgettable films, but also into twentieth-century Spanish society, as well as world cinema. The Cinema of Victor Erice: An Open Window will serve as an important resource to measure the career of this director who along with Bunuel, Saura, and Almodovar has helped show the world the creative range of Spanish cinema. With additional essays, translations, and illustrations, this paperback edition explores new avenues of expression pursued by one of the most poetic of modern filmmakers."