Cinema is an Art form inherently based around the visual image. To celebrate this notion, every week, there will be 5 stills uploaded onto this blog due to their power to resonate emotionally. Whether they are beautiful, technically perfected, memorable, geniusly disgusting, or meet their intentions – they will be put on here.
1. Taxi Driver (1976)
Memorable shot amongst the gritty, intentionally vile looking visuals of Taxi Driver. Perhaps a metaphor for Travis Bickle having died a long time ago, and having killed himself further by becoming a Taxi Driver: his hand in the shape of a gun, and a ‘result’ of the blast being the blood stains all across the wall. Who knows?
2. Lolita (1962)
3. Kill Bill Volume 1 (2003)
My favorite Tarantino image ever. Absolutely simple, yet so effective, it’s as if Tarantino forces it down our eye-sockets and into our subconscious memory itself. I haven’t seen silhouettes being used so effectively for such a long time.
4. Mulholland Drive (2001)
The location. The fact that they’re clutching each other. The similar hairstyles. The lighting. The high-exposure. It all adds up to a dreamlike image. Plus the facial expressions of our leading ladies is a metaphor for the film itself: what…the…hell?
5. Melancholia (2011)
My least favorite von Trier next to The Idiots is Melancholia. Filled with pretentiousness and not really about anything at all – however – the image is beautiful. Observe the symmetry: the three circular planet/stars in the sky, the three characters centre screen. The hedges either-side adding to the formalist nature of the shot. The way the lighting gets lighter from left to right.
Although completely formalist in structure, the image itself is one of absolute haunting beauty which has stayed with me for some time.