Auteurs of Contemporary Science-Fiction Cinema: The Nature of Truth and Reality In The Works of Christopher Nolan and The Wachowskis
Stamper, Scott Woodrow
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Contemporary science-fiction cinema raises two important issues. Can a genre known for the spectacle of computer-generated imagery say anything about truth and reality? Can a filmmaker articulate philosophical ideas through such a collaborative and commercial medium? In fact, these issues have confounded the art of the cinema since the beginning. Auteur Theory, developed in the mid-twentieth century, is the belief that the director is the most important cog in the wheel of filmmaking because he or she ultimately shapes the final vision of the film: how it moves and how it plays. By focusing on auteur directors film critics can find rich and layered meaning in films that might otherwise appear to be nothing more than mere entertainment for the masses. Even today in the film factory of Hollywood artists can still speak to philosophical questions of human existence. This study will consider directors known for sci-fi blockbusters: Christopher Nolan and the Wachowskis. Their films have a unique style and a consistent ideology that makes them worth studying as the works of auteurs. This critical study of key films across their respective careers reveals that Nolan and the Wachowskis are pondering the same question, the nature of truth and reality; however, they come at it from different perspectives. Nolan concentrates on the power of the lie while the Wachowskis advocate the beauty of truth. The best films of these auteurs address how we perceive reality and what it means to be human.