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The Off-ScreenAn Investigation of the Cinematic Frame$
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Eyal Peretz

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9781503600720

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9781503600720.001.0001

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What Is a Cinema of Jewish Vengeance?

What Is a Cinema of Jewish Vengeance?

Tarantino’s Inglourious Basterds

Chapter:
(p.200) 4 What Is a Cinema of Jewish Vengeance?
Source:
The Off-Screen
Author(s):

Eyal Peretz

Publisher:
Stanford University Press
DOI:10.11126/stanford/9781503600720.003.0005

This chapter examines film genre by taking a look at the project of a cinematic heir of Hawks, Quentin Tarantino, in his Inglourious Basterds. Moving as he does between multiple genres without hierarchy, Tarantino discovers in Inglourious Basterds the weight behind this logic, which is that of making the screen the arena of a historical witnessing to the dimension of the “off”. The film expresses three main cinematic ideas. First, that the only way for film to activate the dimension of the “off” is by creating an unstable generic system where cracks between genres allow the “off-screen” to leak into the film. Second, that violence has to do with the attempt to eliminate the “off,” and is always accompanied by the creation of images without an “off.” Third, that the task of the modern cinematic image is to liberate the image from all false images.

Keywords:   genre, Nazis, trauma, witnessing, history, ethics of the image, revenge, circumcision, Jews

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