La Jetee – An analysis

La Jetée is a conscious curation of image, sound and light elegantly assembled by Chris Marker. The film fuses an intimate, whispered narrative of a gentleman whom’s past, present and future is fabricated in an artificial cosmos played out to the viewer in spliced photography and verbal homily.

Marker articulately projects emotion and sensation through the collision of two single mediums, declaring a sci-fi-esque plot of heartbreak, murder and augmented reality.

The poetic realistic film through it’s awfully nonchalant nature amuses this idea of French austerity and neorealism, making apparent the fatalistic view of life through the surrealistic fable of the protagonist.

Professor Kriistina Hackle, Director of Film and Theatre at University of Southern California regards La Jetée as “a film created with strong images, it is about the power of the image, and how an image can mark and determine destiny.”

Hackle’s analysis of Marker’s La Jetée alleviated any confusion I had about the plot, particularly the final few screens, explaining ‘Although given the option to escape to the future alone, the man chooses to return to the past and remain with his love, the woman. He meets the woman on the pier at Orly Airport. The events that unfurled reveal that the haunted moment he witnessed as a child on the pier was actually the image of his own death”.

Akin to Marker’s La Jetée, for our first in class task our group collated a series of 15 still frame photographs, denoting our hour at the Pub, or rather our desire to inevitably misuse time. The images were placed in consistent repeat as to solidify the incessant cycle of stalling and hesitation bound to any vocation of creativity.

Fitting with the poetic realistic and somewhat surrealistic nature of La Jetée, the composition of the chosen images were marginally austere.. after all, we were short of time and at the pub.

Excuses aside, the montage project accentuated the importance of powerful, simplistic imagery exposing curation of image and sound to be of paramount importance to image composition and subjectivity. Our “short film” could have been improved upon by altering the sequence of images per repeat as to generate a heightened sense of narrative.

Splicing elusive visuals of gambling and arguably controlled alcoholism, the montage was a testimony to the gluttony that comes with a lack of judgement when procrastinating. We are all susceptible to the temptation of fruitful indecision.

Reference:

Block, M 2011, World Film Locations: Paris, Intellect Books Ltd, Bristol. Available from: ProQuest Ebook Central. [26 March 2017].

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