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Apparaturbetraktelser: metafilmiska aspekter på Jan Troells Här har du ditt liv
Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Cinema Studies.
2001 (Swedish)Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This dissertation deals with the Swedish film director Jan Troell (b. 1931) and his first feature film Here Is Your Life (Här har du ditt liv, 1966). As a filmmaker, Troell stands out, in also having worked as cinematographer, editor and sound editor of his own films almost without exception throughout his career.

Troell´s Here Is Your Life is characterized by an "apparatus-oriented" film style. In this film we find stylistic devices such as unconventional camera angles and framings, an often very mobile camera, discontinuous editing, montage sequences, freeze-frames, dissolves and double exposures, an occasionally very sparse sound track with separate amplified sounds, and the use of music as a dominant part of the sound track. Together these devices heighten one´s awareness of seeing the world of the film through the medium of film. Attention may also be drawn to certain components of the cinematic apparatus: the camera, the editing table, the film and the magnetic tape. Troell´s film style seems to develop from an exploration of these parts of the apparatus and their different properties.

Troell´s "apparatus-oriented" style is the main point of departure for a close analysis of Here Is Your Life. The film is an adaptation of Eyvind Johnson´s autobiographic novel Romanen om Olof ("The Novel About Olof", 1934-1937), about a working-class boy growing up in Northern Sweden during the First World War. On another level, however, the film can be interpreted metacinematically: the filmmaker looks at the world of the film through the cinematic apparatus, while at the same time exploring the apparatus and its properties in relation to that world. These and other related metacinematic aspects are reflected in the style of the film and partly in the story, first of all in the way it depicts the character Olof.

In connection with my analysis of Troell´s film, I discuss the theoretical concepts of filmmaker and cinematic apparatus. I see both as constructions based on the discourse of the film and the spectator´s knowledge of the real filmmaker or the real film equipment. Furthermore, I examine the concept of cinematic illusion, which I define as the impression of looking at a world through the film medium. However absorbed the spectator is, the medium is always part of the film experience. I argue that the effects of Troell´s film style remain within this illusion. I also regard Troell and his work from a historical point of view. I discuss the influences from the French New Wave and how the changes of film style in the movements during the 1960´s were conditioned by the development of film technology. After the analysis of Here Is Your Life I outline an interpretation of Troell´s later work that combines the metacinematic point of view with a closer look at some of the more conspicuous themes of the different films. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Aura , 2001. , 288 p.
Keyword [sv]
Jan Troell, metafilm, filmanalyser, filmhistoria, Sverige
National Category
Studies on Film
Research subject
Cinema Studies
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-142234ISBN: 91-7265-330-2 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-142234DiVA: diva2:1091811
Public defence
2001-09-29, 10:00 (Swedish)
Opponent
Note

Diss. Stockholm : Univ., 2001

Med sammanfattning på engelska

Available from: 2017-04-28 Created: 2017-04-28 Last updated: 2017-07-05Bibliographically approved

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