at 12:30, 13 Nov 2006
|THE FALL OF THE HOLLYWOOD EMPIRE
We need a revolution in film. Film is an art form. It can be of many varieties. But film's essential characteristic is the power of their creators in creating, nay, in revolutionizing the world from chaos to sanity, or spirituality. Film must be used as a medium for raising the consciousness of the masses, albeit, much to their chagrin.
This process begins with the agony and ectasy of writing. The pen has always been and always will be more powerful than the sword. Thus, it is incumbent upon the writer and later, all those in the communications industry to not just present "entertainment" for entertainment's sake but to uplift humanity with a vision for the future. In the right hands, this can be done minimally without being overtly didactic or propagandistic.
The second most important aspect of this revolution is the editing process. A friend once told me that in film editing, "One cut can kill you." I thought about this over the years and of course I had read many times about Eisenstein's montage theories etc. and realized that my friend's comment was right. Editing a film to progress one's vision and splicing two disparate images together can make a profound comment, as in wriitng. For example, The final shot in "All Quiet on the Western Front" with Lew Ayres reaching for the butterfly before we hear a gunshot and realize he has been killed. A zillion books about the horror of war could not contain that visual anti-war statement.
The late playwright Sean O'Casey used to write about the struggle of the working class. Fist-fights use to break out in front of the famed Abbey Thetare in Dublin in the 1930's because his plays were deemed controversial. While I do not mean to advocate violence as a response to film art, film's dynamic in the right hands is such that, while everyone may not agree with the creator's points of view, at least film should aspire to rousing the masses to a sense of cognizance of the human condition.
Hollywood has at it's disposal the ability to enlighten the masses in newer and fresh ways provided they do not censor emerging writers and film directors from sharing their vision with the world.
If they cannot do this, than Hollywood will forever remain a dream factory while losing it's core audiences who demand a better alternative as we move into the 21st Century to leave a legacy for the next generation that will move us from madness to tranqulity.