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Carl Theodor Dreyer (1889 - 1968)

Related: director - Denmark - film

Scene from
Vampyr (1932) - Carl Theodor Dreyer [Amazon.com]
Image sourced here.


Carl Theodor Dreyer (February 3, 1889 - March 20, 1968) was a Danish film director. He is regarded as one of the greatest directors of European cinema. Although his career spanned the 1910s through the 1960s, his meticulousness, dictatorial methods, idiosynchractic shooting style, and stubborn devotion to his art ensured that his output remained low. In spite of this, he has produced some of the most enduring classics of international cinema. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carl_Theodor_Dreyer [Aug 2005]

Leaves From Satan's Book (1919) - Carl Theodor Dreyer

Leaves From Satan's Book (1919) - Carl Theodor Dreyer [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

See also: 1919 -

Vampyr (1932) - Carl Theodor Dreyer

Vampyr (1932) - Carl Theodor Dreyer [Amazon.com]
In this chilling, atmospheric German film from 1932, director Carl Theodor Dreyer favors style over story, offering a minimal plot that draws only partially from established vampire folklore. Instead, Dreyer emphasizes an utterly dreamlike visual approach, using trick photography (double exposures, etc.) and a fog-like effect created by allowing additional light to leak onto the exposed film. The result is an unsettling film that seems to spring literally from the subconscious, freely adapted from the Victorian short story Carmilla by noted horror author Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu, about a young man who discovers the presence of a female vampire in a mysterious European castle. There's more to the story, of course, but it's the ghostly, otherworldly tone of the film that lingers powerfully in the memory. Dreyer maintains this eerie mood by suggesting horror and impending doom as opposed to any overt displays of terrifying imagery. Watching Vampyr is like being placed under a hypnotic trance, where the rules of everyday reality no longer apply. As a splendid bonus, the DVD includes The Mascot, a delightful 26-minute animated film from 1934. Created by pioneering animator Wladyslaw Starewicz, this clever film--in which a menagerie of toys and dolls springs to life--serves as an impressive precursor to the popular Wallace & Gromit films of the 1990s. --Jeff Shannon for Amazon.com

[...] Vampyr (1932), a surreal meditation on fear. Logic gave way to mood and atmosphere in this story of a man protecting two sisters from a vampire. The movie contains many indelible images, such as the hero dreaming of his own burial and the animal bloodlust on the face of one of the sisters as she suffers under the vampire's spell. The film was shot as a silent but had dialogue added later through dubbing. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carl_Theodor_Dreyer [Aug 2005]

Believing in this World; Artaud - Deleuze - Dreyer.

by Stephen Zepke Article

Antonin Artaud was both blessed and cursed with an incredible sensitivity, he felt and lived life as if it was being continuously taken away from him. This was Artaud's agony, he was constantly attacked by evil spirits, imprisoned by vast secret conspiracies, tortured by shadowy Initiates, a whole war rages, and the battlefield is his body. This war fought over the possession of Artaud's body, is a war he fights in order to keep his real body, and to reject the organism God wants to impose on him. God denies Artaud his 'total dimension', that dimension of the body in which, as he puts it, a 'single man is as strong as all infinity.'

This is not only Artaud's war, its our war also, because our body, under the guise of being a "human organism" is constructed in God's image. We are organised into bodies which prevent us from reaching the infinite, which keep the infinite forever outside us, and as God. As organisms we share a functional arrangement of organs which amounts, Artaud says, to this pathetic sack of shit and meat we call our body. Why is it so pathetic, this "infinitesimal inside" as he calls it? Because it exists only as the judgement of God, cowering, limited, powerless, happy to be living dead, without intensity, without passion, without sensations of the real. The human, all to human is a sick animal, because its body, its organised body, its organism, cannot experience the life of flows and forces in their constant collisions and conjunctions, their rips and tears, their agonies and joys. Condemned to our organised body we cannot truly live. 'Man,' Artaud argues, 'is sick because he is badly constructed'. The organism, this organisation of useless organs, contains our sensations, thoughts, and feelings within a pathetic inside, and converts all our most powerful expressions into pale representations which are nothing more, Artaud says, than stinking farts of gas. --http://pages.akbild.ac.at/aesthetik/eszed/paper_02.html Aug 2005]

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