The Cinema of Jan Svankmajer: Dark Alchemy / Edition 2

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The Cinema of Jan Svankmajer explores the legacy of this legendary Czech surrealist filmmaker, a key influence on directors such as Terry Gilliam and Tim Burton, and one of the greatest animators in cinema history. This updated second edition -- still the only full-length study of his work—features contributions from scholars and colleagues within the Czech Surrealist movement, as well as a new chapter on Svankmajer's feature films and an extended interview with Svankmajer himself. This volume is required reading for all budding animators and disciples of surrealism.

Wallflower Press

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Editorial Reviews

Times Literary Supplement
A real achievement... could be a turning point in the developing area of animation studies, as well as an important contribution to film history.

— Jayne Pilling


A must for anyone interested in the serious treatment of animated film.

Historical Journal of Film, Television and Radio - Daniel J. Goulding

Those who have been long-term admirers of Svankmajer's films will welcome this masterfully orchestrated volume... It is extremely well informed, sensistive to the nuances and complexities of Svankmajer's individual film works, clearly and eloquently written, and critically provocative without being in the least dogmatic.

Times Literary Supplement - Jayne Pilling

A real achievement... could be a turning point in the developing area of animation studies, as well as an important contribution to film history.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781905674466
  • Publisher: Wallflower Press
  • Publication date: 10/7/2008
  • Series: Directors' Cuts Series
  • Edition description: second edition
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 224
  • Product dimensions: 6.40 (w) x 9.30 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Peter Hames is Honorary Research Associate in Film and Media Studies at Staffordshire University. He is the author of The Czechoslovak New Wave (2005) and the editor of The Cinema of Central Europe (2005).

Wallflower Press

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Table of Contents

1 The Film Experiment Peter Hames Hames, Peter 8

2 Jan Svankmajer: A Mannerist Surrealist Michael O'Pray O'Pray, Michael 40

3 Thinking Through Things: The Presence of Objects in the Early Films of Jan Svankmajer Roger Cardinal Cardinal, Roger 67

4 The Core of Reality: Puppets in the Feature Films of Jan Svankmajer Peter Hames Hames, Peter 83

5 Interview with Jan Svankmajer Peter Hames Hames, Peter 104

6 Decalogue Jan Svankmajer Svankmajer, Jan 140

7 The Force of Imagination Frantisek Dryje Dryje, Frantisek 143

Afterword Peter Hames Hames, Peter 204

Notes 210

Filmography 216

Bibliography 221

Index 238

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