Saturday, November 18, 2006

Philosophy v. Film?

If I proposed some kind of gathering to watch a film, how many of you would actually show up? The film I have in mind is Papillon. If you have not seen it, it is very good, I highly recommend it. (Dustin Hoffman and Steve McQueen!) But why this film? For two reasons:

(1) It is not in any way trying to be philosophical, but it is, and so it achieves that very nicely.
(2) The way in which it is philosophical is that it is existential--at least, I think so, very deeply so--and since it's not trying to be, it does it so well and doesn't come off as being cheesy and superficial.

But, a couple of things about this film:

(a) It is a bit long, 2.5 hours.
(b) It is not an easy film to watch, it's got some tough scenes, and being a film from the 70s, it's not designed to keep you easily entertained at every instant, so it can make it feel like it's even longer than it is. (I personally think such a feature of good films is something that adds to their depth; it forces you to spend time actually thinking about what you are watching, since your eyeballs aren't just be hosed down with visual candy.)

And lastly, a few things about the gathering, if there would be one:

(i) Someone else would have to house it, since I do not own a tv & dvd player, and I have a really tiny apartment.
(ii) Food and drinks are probably a good idea.
(iii) There wouldn't be any requirement for any philosophical discussion after the film or anything like that, not unless anyone desires it; sometimes, watching a film like this requires a lot of contemplation afterwards to really get the philosophical depth out of it.
(iv) Obviously, significant others and friends are welcome.
(v) Essentially, this could replace any bar gathering, and provide for something a bit different and stimulating in a different way.

So, who would actually come? (Please don't just say you would, and then not show up if we actually do it.) And since the department is actually much larger than this little group here, if you are really interested, please do spread the word to others in the department and see who else would come. (Tell them to respond here to say so, it would be nice to get some idea of how many people would actually be into it.) But of course, once a decision is made about it, an email will be sent out to all grad students about it.

9 Comments:

At 10:57 PM, November 18, 2006, Blogger cheryl said...

Here is a link to a trailer:

trailer.

It's kind of a cheesy trailer. It might also be a cumbersome load, so hit the pause button on the player and let it load up first, otherwise it will just start playing immediately while it's still loading, and that might cause it to "skip" and such.

 
At 10:43 PM, November 19, 2006, Blogger Sarah said...

I'd be willing to host it. I DO live on the other side of town (off Gull Road near Sprinkle) but I'm sure we could arrange car pools, pick-ups, etc.

Unless someone closer to campus wants to do the honors.

 
At 5:57 PM, November 21, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not Existential; more of Plato. Papillon works surreptitiously with the myths of Plato, especially of Arete in life and judgement of the soul.

The Order of Plato's Dialogues (entire cannon) has
been established.

Buy, Plato's Astrology ($24.00, 8x11, 300pp), at lulu.com
or risk being laughed at as irrelevant by even those
without your training who have otherwise read the book.

This is not a joke.

 
At 7:16 PM, November 21, 2006, Blogger cheryl said...

Um, who is the anon poster above? Please identify yourself, out of courtesy, especially if you are specifically not a member of our department. Don't spam the board, because that is a whole lot what it looks from here.

lulu.com is absolutely NOT a reputable publisher for academic work. Frankly, no academic is ever going to take seriously a book that is published by a site that offers FREE publishing to ANYONE. What it says is that the book is not at all good enough to be published by a real publisher.

 
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At 2:46 PM, November 28, 2006, Blogger Bryan said...

We may want to consider disabling anonymous posting, to discourage spam. I don't know why everyone still uses the word verification system for this kind of thing (I'm looking at you, Ticketmaster) seeing as better text-recognition software has made it essentially useless. I've seen replacements, like picking a kitten out of a line-up of animals. It's not just effective, it's also adorable.

 
At 7:15 AM, November 29, 2006, Blogger Sarah said...

Yes, picking out a kitten would be far more fun...but blogger doesn't allow us that feature.

My concern in not allowing anonymous comments is that it would prohibit some from commenting, as they'd have to sign up for a blogger account. I think they have limited accounts that you can just comment with, but I'll admit that I'm not sure.

As far as comment moderation goes... this would require me to okay every single comment on every single post- which means that potentially your comments would not get posted for up to 24 hours, since I would have to find time to okay all these comments. Which is fine, it just delays the gratification of commenting.

Once we've been targeted, we'll probably get spammed again. However, I'm inclined to wait and see how bad the spam gets before we make a final decision. However, I am very much open to discussion on the issues of:
1) anonymous comments
2) comment moderation

If I don't get much of a response here, perhaps I'll post it and open it up that way. This is as democratic as it gets- although I am your sovereign, given my blog-god status, I yield to the will of the masses.

 
At 10:20 PM, November 30, 2006, Blogger Jo said...

Hmmm. Well, how about for now we just remove the offending posts? This is the first time (as far as I know) that we've had spam, and while it will probably happen again in the future, at least we don't have to look at it, while we deliberate what to do.

Actually, do you think requiring everyone to have a blogger account to comment would also encourage original contributions to this blog?

 
At 10:56 PM, December 02, 2006, Blogger cheryl said...

Um, if they have to make up a blogger account, so what? They are FREE. It takes moments to set one up. And they can make it all cryptic so we don't know who they are.

I am all for disabling anonymous comments. We can just have an announcement that, look, we're sorry, but we don't want spam, so you're just going to have to make yourself an account, and you don't have to use your real name if you don't want to. It also doesn't have to show email or anything. But yes, those comments should be deleted.

Don't worry, Sarah, no one is going to think you're a Nazi for being so strict with all of the admin stuff. ;P

 

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