1.Bazin and Zavattini are both interested in seeing “reality” conveyed on screen, albeit in different ways. Bazin’s emphasis on the long take and deep focus might be considered a phenomenological realism, as this this kind of filmmaking reflects the way humans experience space and time. Zavattini, on the other hand, is primarily interested in social realism, focusing on actual, everyday problems of common people. But these two aspects may be related as well, with the long duration and ambiguity of the deep focus shot capturing certain social realities typically neglected in many classical Hollywood films.With either/both of these aspects of “realism” in mind, address how you see this conveyed in Bicycle Thieves or any other film (there is a subcategory of contemporary indie films critics have called “neo-neorealism”) that may take up this approach to great effect.
2.Address how Cléo from 5 to 7 and/or The Circle exemplify some of the European Modernist or New Wave sensibilities that directly challenge the classical Hollywood tradition. In what ways do these films, or other contemporary alternative cinemas break particular conventions in order to convey certain stories about—or the perspectives of—individuals or groups that were historically excluded from most conventional films? In other words, how does the film form (ranging from lighting, cinematography, and editing to narrative structure) contribute to its social/cultural/political message?
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