Ross Hunter Turns into Douglas Sirk is a witty "found" comment on the transformative powers of auteurism
. (A similar desecration is effected throughout by the juxtaposition of Waters' axioms like Divine or Edith Massey with various real stars and media personalities.) The economical Otto freezes images from Otto Preminger's 1957 Saint Joan for a near-definitive statement on the destructive power of directorial megalomania and naive will-to-stardom.
All the same, I think his argument jibes in an interesting way with a current tendency to see auteurism
as politically tainted.
Indeed, this horror classic only becomes more mystifying and mysterious with each viewing, just as the director himself has confounded and delighted his devoted followers, for whom he represents the paragon of auteurism
. With 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968), Kubrick had acquired an unprecedented air of portentousness for a Hollywood filmmaker.
While subsequent attacks on auteurism
(particularly by feminist film critics) are both accurate and relevant, more contemporary critics, such as David Gerstner, successfully argue that auteur theory remains a useful lens for understanding film.
As they speak about the centrality of the director to all movies they make and distribute, it's clear that they, perhaps more than any two executives working in the specialty arena, embody the spirit of 1960s and '70s auteurism
and the ideal of United Artists, especially under Arthur Krim.
Polan not only focuses on the auteurism
of the director but also upon the complex intersection between reality and the viewer's perceptions of reality--is the surreal perspective of a film's character more "real" in regards to the experience of warfare than such graphic representations of combat violence as the much-touted opening twenty minutes of Spielberg's Saving Private Ryan (1998)?
Such, as many commentators have observed, are the distortions of auteurism
as a critical framework that facilitates the dissemination of "foreign" films and at that same time restricts knowledge to a few fetishized examples.
Blending the mundane with the ever-so-slightly hallucinatory, Assayas' meditation on cinema-as-cabin-fever is both a send-up of and homage to the romantic mythology of auteurism
. The smitten film director who shows Cheung this video snippet of herself (even as she protests a stunt-double was used) is played by Jean-Pierre Leaud, whose status as nouvelle vague icon lends yet another layer of association to a picture full of echoes from new waves gone by.
had to do with a lot more than which movies you liked.
In the third chapter, dealing with the shifts during the presidency of Carlos Menem, we see how auteurism
gave way to the Argentine-made blockbuster, based on the American model.