Volker Schlondorff's Cinema: Adaptation, Politics, and the "Movie-Appropriate"

By Hans-Bernhard Moeller; George Lellis | Go to book overview

28
Conclusion

In writing this book, we intended to be neither uncritical champions of Volker Schlöndorff nor completely detached reporters. Rather, the book's goal has been to assess a film career whose significance has come largely from works categorized either as qualified successes or interesting failures. Schlöndorff is important not because he has directed an astonishing string of indisputable masterpieces but because he has pursued strategies of film production that defy easy categorization. Any conclusions drawn about this body of work must consider Schlöndorff's penchant for jumping into waters whose currents pull in two directions. To sum up this study's concerns, let us propose five axioms for the appreciation of Schlöndorff's movies.

1. Schlöndorff's films are not for those who would create a false dichotomy between film and literature. Critics who decry the disfiguring of literature by cinematic adaptation usually believe that something has been lost of the complexity, the vividness, or the resonance of the original. We have instead seen how Schlöndorff's works, when successful, have a cinema-specific complexity, vividness, and resonance. This applies to both successful adaptations and works written directly for the screen.

Too often, those who complain about the oversimplifications of popular movies locate their lack of complexity in the medium itself, as though literary expression by definition is more complicated than cinematic expression. These critics automatically oppose literature to film and refuse to value the cinematic pleasures of direct sensory involvement. Schlöndorff's films make the compelling argument that screen adaptations need not be simple-minded nor mere illustrations of an author's story. Rather, they may combine the immediacy of a visual medium with at least some of the reflectiveness of the written word.

In response to cinema purists who argue that the director's repeated reliance on literary sources merely indicates a lack of a fully developed cinematic imagination, we counter that Schlöndorff in no way proposes his style of literary adaptation as the only mode of filmmaking. Indeed, in an interview from the

-319-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Volker Schlondorff's Cinema: Adaptation, Politics, and the "Movie-Appropriate"
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen
/ 370

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.