Time is of the essence. Time is money. Time waits for no man. And time defines the man’s day and life.
Time is a fluid form which man has tried to pin down and control. He has succeded in pinning it down in the worm of clocks and measurements. But he has not conquered it. Time in fact rules over the man and always will.
“Time is sold to us as a precious commodity, something real and tangible. We’ve been raised with this idea that we live along some invisible line from birth to death and that it holds some kind of invaluable currency that we must spend wisely.” -(Maguire, The illusion of time, online article, 01/11/2015.)
Count the amount you have been stressed over time. There’s a lot of occasions where time has controlled you as an individual. Man gets stressed not solely due to pressure from work and the workload, the but amount he has to do in a short period of time, for his deadline, for next monday. Time is what kills man. And time is essentially death. Man has managed to become fearful of time. He has begun to dislike it and dread it. For he knows that everyday he is running out of time. It slips through his fingers like fine sand and he cannot keep a hold on it. He tries everything to keep it for longer, to gain another second, to gain more time.
To discuss time as a whole is opening a can of worms to the world of science, physics and philosophy all at once. But it also opens up a door to the more imaginative, to animation and movie. In this blog post I will explore what time and cinema has incommon and what they do when linked together as a pair.
“Over several centuries, from the Greeks to Kant, a revolution took place in philosophy: the subordination of time to movement was reversed, time ceases to be the measurement of normal movement, it increasingly appears for itself and creates paradoxical movements. […] It could be said that, in its ownsphere, cinema has repeated the same experience, the same reversal, in morefast-moving circumstances. The movement-image of the so called classicalcinema gave way, in the post-war period, to a direct time-image.” -(Deleuze, Cinema 2, The Time-Image, Minneapolis 1989. online PDF)
In other words, cinema has managed to create a sphere of its own existence where time follows no rule, where time has its own core and where it flows in a different pace than to outside of its own made sphere. This isn’t exactly happening of course, but it gives the illusion. And illusion is what time is all about. When a man enters a cinema to watch a movie he has been waiting for, for ages. As an example he has been waiting for the new Star wars the force awakens, movie. This man is in his late fifties and thus where a young man when the first Star Wars movie came out. He has waited over thirty years for this movie. He enters the cinema in its dark room with the high tech surround sound. As the movie begins he loses track of time outside of the cinema. He is engulfed in the sci-fi movie that unfolds in front of his eyes, he is brought back to his childhood and nostalgia hits him. Time ceases to exist. The only measurement of time that is relevant to him is the flow of the movie. And within that movie days can pass if not months and years depending on the movie itself. To him the world outside no longer have a relevance, the movie is now his alternative universe. When the movie is over and he has to leave the sphere he will be thrown back into the actual universe time which he resides within. As for personal experience, this can be rather depressing. And this has happened worldwide. When James Cameron’s new movie “Avatar” was hitting the theaters people flocked to see it, and in equeal measurement was hit by depression and suicidal thoughts. The audience watching the movie got so depressed that Pandora the planet which the movie takes place, is un-obtainable, that they cannot physically ever go and see it for themselves. Thousand of posts on forums have had titles such as “Ways to cope with the depression of the dream of Pandora being intangible” -(Dailymail.co.uk. 12/01/2010)
Cinema has made it almost a craftmanship to alter and redo the illusion of time. There is not just one way the movie can do so, in fact there’s two opposites. Pulp Fiction by Quentin Tarantino from 1994 is a quick paced time travel. The way the movie is shot is so that all action happens within the frame, most of the time. A lot of camera angels and action within the shot. He is also keen to obscure things, to hide the action so that the audience just get a hint of what is going on. It is intriguing and it has the viewe
experincing a quick paced time line where a lot of things happen in a short amount of time. A lot of actors and various small side stories to each character. Two actions from two different places within the movie collide and brings together a chaos of action.
In the opposite end is the “Stalker” By a Andrei Tarkovsky 1979. The Stalker is a very slow movie, and it’s not unlikely for certain individuals to fall asleep while seeing it. It’s slow, calm and in black and white for the beginning of it. Despite the two movies being in the same field of genre, both leaning to be Sci-fi. They are complete polar opposites. In Stalker, where the three main characters are seeing standing in bar before the train they need to use arrives, is a shot where the camera merely have the three actors in it. It doesn’t change, nothing happens it only zooms in very slowly. It’s a long shot in one take where the two out of the three actors talk about daily stuff more or less. It is a very boring shot in its essence. But for the film lover this could very well be a masterpiece, as it shows how simplicit it can be yet what effect it can have on the audience. How it makes a scence. How it creates Mise-En-Scene.
With both movies, the man who watches this in the cinema is taken to different alternative universes where time flows differently.
Conclusion: Time is a management that man has taken to him, it has eaten him and now man is forced to simply follow time. There is nothing else humans can do, but follow time and accept its flow. When man begins batteling time stress often becomes the outcome. Time is something there’s all around and even if it was not numbered down or forced into the shape of a clock it is still there. Human age is time, it may not be defined into digits but it shows how time goes by. The skin wrinkles, it becomes more baggy from the works of gravity. And by the end of it the body ceases to function and it breaks down into five stages of decay. That is time passing, that is time being part of the daily life of a man. For with time comes death and there’s nothing more man fears the the unknown that is death. That alone is a whole new blogpost in itself. However, as a last thing I want to give you this excellent League of Legends cinematic, that is artistically well done and mood settingly well done. It’s about time. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uf4EPuHnIr8
Online reference list:
Maguire G. Larry. The Illusion of time, does time exist in a fundamental reality? Accesed on 13/03/2016.
Poell Thomas. Movement and time in cinema. Online PDF upload. Page 1. Academia.edu 2016. Accesed on 13/03/2016.
Thomas Liz. The Avatar effect: Movie-goers feel depressed and even suicidal at not being able to visit utopian alien planet. Dailymail.co.uk. 12/01/2010. Accesed on 13/o3/2016.