Tarantino’s characters find that their redemption depends on whether there is a meaning to the word. An excerpt from The Philosophy of Neo-Noir.
X-Men vs. Superman
On the surface, both the X-Men and Superman films push a message of hope over fear, but what deeper instinctive fear could there be than that of being genetically supplanted?
What this year's four vampire-hybrid films have in common is an overcoming of our oldest fear.
Star Wars - Batman Begins
Are Batman and Vader twins separated at birth, or worse? I am Darth's raging doppelganger envy. This and other mysteries herein revealed.
On fictional universes and the fans who rationalize them.
Is There a Shire in the Text?
This excerpt from a new book on the Lord
of the Rings trilogy explores the issue of sophistication and the
happy ending, or the ways fantasy films speak to and for the inner child. A
Metaphilm online exclusive.
Shyamalan’s films ask us questions
about the ways we cope with our fears in hopes of affecting our unspoken
Gibson’s Sublime Passion
Why do we watch tragedies and horror movies? Philosopher Bill Irwin suggests that our answer can help explain why Gibson made The Passion of the Christ the way he did. It’s a matter of aesthetics, and there’s a distinction to be made between the beautiful and the sublime. A Metaphilm online exclusive.
God, Suicide, and the Meaning of Life
Is comedy just a distraction? Mark Conard explores the director’s beliefs as seen in his characters in this excerpt from the forthcoming book, Woody Allen and Philosophy. A Metaphilm exclusive.
In this pre-publication excerpt from his new book
on enigmatic master director Krzysztof Kieślowski,
Dr. Joe Kickasola gives an overview of the Decalogue and an
in-depth reading of Decalogue
II. A Metaphilm exclusive.
Recent popular films on memory loss raise the question of whether it’s something to fear—or enjoy.
‘First Draft’ can mean many things, some of which are not just matters of preference.
Murderous Melodrama or Morality Play? A Metaphilm online exclusive.
Job, The Movie
The Book of Job could be a movie starring Stallone. No, really. An excerpt from Killing the Buddha.
Beyond Thumbs Up or Down
Most of the time, writers for Metaphilm approach films to see what they
mean or what they have to say—consciously or subconsciously, seriously
or humorously. We typically avoid the subjective question of whether
the film under discussion is any good. Here, one film professor offers
his introductory guidelines for ways you can evaluate the films you watch.
Think of it as a meta-level approach to film-watching, or perhaps a way
to go meta with movie critics.
The Redemption of Guilt
Characters from Cider House Rules, Thirteen Conversations, and Fight Club take guilt into their own bloody hands.
Jesus is alive and well and living in popular film. Here are a few pointers to help you recognize his cinematic incarnations.
Poetic License and Geography
New York is the setting for more movies than any other city. It also houses more than its fair share of geographreaks. This is a problem for geographically challenged directors. One professional New York geographreak offers cases in point—and a cautionary note to filmmakers.
Tolkien’s Green Time
Andrew Light enters Tolkien’s universe and shows how it ain’t easy being green—though we’ve got to try—in this prepublication chapter from the forthcoming The Lord of the Rings and Philosophy. A Metaphilm exclusive.
It looks like little-finned Nemo is a small orange version of the big bad green Hulk. It's a story about trying to survive in a capitalist empire.
Priests in Black
Neo may dress like a priest, but Tom Cruise as John Anderton is more like the real thing.
Belshazzar, son of Nebuchadnezzar, learns a lesson about the interpretation of signs.
A touching response and homage to the American coming-of-age film. Teenage virginity is a heavy burden. Please help.
A touching homage to the continental coming-of-age film. Come, hear our ecstatic cries. We beg you.
They Are Alive
The questions of convincing bullshit and propaganda in a righteous cause.