Doing Time: Temporality, Hermeneutics, and Contemporary Cinema

Doing Time: Temporality, Hermeneutics, and Contemporary Cinema

by Lee Carruthers


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Doing Time addresses two areas of interest in recent film study—film temporality and film philosophy—to propose an innovative theorization of cinematic time that sees it as a dynamic process of engagement, or something we do as viewers. This active relation to cinematic time, which discloses a film's temporal character, is called its "timeliness." Here it is traced across a range of fascinating case studies from Hollywood and the global art cinema, uncovering each film's characteristic way of "doing time." Throughout, the ambiguities of filmic time are held as powerful attractions as they modulate film viewing: such pauses, gaps, repetitions, and stretches of time illuminate a living field that extends from viewing activity.

Drawing on the writings of French film critic and theorist André Bazin, as well as the phenomenology of Martin Heidegger and Maurice Merleau-Ponty, Lee Carruthers forwards a claim about the value of cinematic time for thinking. She also raises the tasks of film analysis and interpretation to renewed visibility. By prioritizing the viewer's experience of filmic temporality, and offering a rich vocabulary for describing this exchange, Carruthers articulates a new sphere of theoretical inquiry that invites film viewers (and readers) to participate.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781438460864
Publisher: State University of New York Press
Publication date: 01/02/2017
Series: SUNY series, Horizons of Cinema
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 186
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.60(d)

About the Author

Lee Carruthers is Assistant Professor of Film Studies at the University of Calgary.

Table of Contents


1. Timeliness and Contemporary Cinema

2. Biding Our Time: Rethinking the Familiar in Steven Soderbergh’s The Limey

3. Back and Forth: Reading Reverse Chronology in François Ozon’s 5x2

4. Enduring Time: Temporal Duration in Tsai Ming-liang’s What Time Is It There?

5. Deep Time: Methods of Montage in Terrence Malick’s The Tree of Life


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