The Problem of Escape in American Film Noir : Cinema, Philosophy, Theology

Detta är en Magister-uppsats från Uppsala universitet/Systematisk teologi

Författare: Aron Ericson; [2024]

Nyckelord: film noir; film-theology; film-philosophy; original sin;

Sammanfattning: Following developments in the last decades in the philosophical and theological studies of film, this study investigates film noir from the classic Hollywood era (1940-1959) from this perspective. It presents the key ideas behind the fields of film-philosophy and film-theology. Turning more specifically to film noir, the study addresses themes that come to the fore in these films, focusing especially on the depiction of human existence as characterized by a need for escape, that is at the same time impossible. The set of questions that arises with this starting point is developed through readings of a number of films, most lengthily Laura (directed by Otto Preminger, 1944) and Criss Cross (Robert Siodmak, 1949). It is suggested that film noir in interesting ways problematizes the persistent post-Enlightenment view of the subject as first and foremost rational and autonomous, and further, that film noir can be seen as following the Christian doctrine of original sin in seeing human existence as standing in need of redemption, while holding that it is at best uncertain if such redemption is possible. 

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