> Has anyone mentioned Miklos Jancso's THE RED AND THE WHITE (1968)?

Many of Jancsó's films have long takes. Indeed, *The Red and the White*
starts to seem like frenetic montage when compared to some of the works that
came after it in the late 60s and 70s. Notable is *Szerelmem, Elektra*
(*Elektreia*, 1974), a full-length feature in 12 shots.

All the films contain mixes of symbolism and realism, although the former
becomes far more pronounced in the 1970s when characters die and come to
life again or deliberate anachronisms appear  (as in *Szerelmem, Elektra*,
an obviously allegorical version of the Greek myth of Elektra with a
helicopter and a gun thrown in).

To follow up from *Kinoeye*'s double special issue on Jancsó
(, we are hoping to publish an
article on realism vs. symbolism in the early works of the director in the
near future.

(BTW, also notable in the long takes department is Béla Tarr's *Macbeth* --
a 72-minute film in two takes, one of which is just four or five mins. long.
*Kinoeye* also has an interview with Tarr coming up shortly.)


Andrew James Horton
Kinoeye (

----- Original Message -----
From: "Lisa Kernan" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Monday, March 15, 2004 8:28 PM
Subject: Re: long takes

> Greetings,

> Definitely long takes ('Scope no less) in the service of realism (verging
> on surrealism) in depiction of war.
> Cheers,
> Lisa
> > On Sat, 13 Mar 2004 02:31:00 -0500 David Tetzlaff
> > <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> >
> >> One of the central principles of film studies (or so it seems) is the
> >> distinction between a Bazinian realistic aesthetic on one hand, and a
> >> more Eisensteinian montage/presentational style on the other, with
> >> classical Hollywood film, or at least classical cutting, somewhere in
> >> the middle. The realist style is said to favor long takes and
> >> deep-focus cinematography, to preserve 'the ontology of the
> >> photographic image' by avoiding editing where possible.
> >>
> >> However, I can't seem to bring to mind any specific films that employ
> >> long takes that seem particularly realist to me. Most of the
> >> interesting long takes I can think of call attention to themselves by
> >> virtue of their length. For example, the long takes in Stranger Than
> >> Paradise seem more formalist to me than realist.
> >>
> >> So i have two questions. The first is practical:
> >>
> >> Can people recommend specific fiction films (and better specific
> >> scenes) where long takes are employed toward the end of a Bazinian
> >> realism?
> >>
> >> The second is theoretical:
> >> Have the representational markers of 'realism' changed. Is the
> >> absense of editing still what enables the integrety of a photographic
> >> images 'realness' (if it ever was)? I am thinking especially of
> >> 'Dogme' influenced films, which seem very invested in a kind of
> >> realism but have lots of cuts, and very obvious ones at that. My
> >> hypothesis would be that all this descends from Direct Cinema
> >> documentary, which established certain conventions of how
> >> moving-picture photography is used to capture
> >> life-as-it-actually-happens. The pragmatic necessities of Direct
> >> Cinema dictated often jerky, hand-held camera work, narrow depth of
> >> field, and often jerky edits -- which now seem almost universally
> >> deployed in any narrative that wants to seem 'real' and 'urgent',
> >> from the TV show 24 to the film Thirteen, just to take examples with
> >> numbers instead of names.
> >>
> >> Any thoughts?
> >>
> >> ----
> >> To sign off Screen-L, e-mail [log in to unmask] and put SIGNOFF
> >> Screen-L in the message.  Problems?  Contact [log in to unmask]
> >
> > ----------------------
> > Dr. Mike Chopra-Gant
> > [log in to unmask]
> >
> > ----
> > Online resources for film/TV studies may be found at ScreenSite
> >
> ----------------------
> Dr. Lisa D. Kernan
> Arts Librarian for Film, Television and Theater
> UCLA Arts Library
> 310-206-4823
> [log in to unmask]
> ----
> Online resources for film/TV studies may be found at ScreenSite

Online resources for film/TV studies may be found at ScreenSite