By Eleftheria Thanouli
Wag the Dog is a movie that turned a media occasion and a cultural icon since it inadvertently short-circuited the space that's purported to separate truth and fiction. The film's narration demanding situations the confirmed limitations among the fiction and nonfiction culture, as Barry Levinson, the director, embeds his curiosity in documentary filmmaking and complicates the problem of narrative organization within the means he frames the tale.
The exam of the ancient and social context during which it was once produced, exhibited and got around the globe allows the writer to light up a sequence of adjustments within the approach a fiction movie displays and interacts with truth, urging us to think again a few of our principal and long-standing techniques or perhaps paradigms in movie thought. Eleftheria Thanouli offers new insights right into a sequence of matters from either classical and modern movie thought, just like the conceptual and ontological stakes within the use of electronic expertise, the impression of mass media on public reminiscence and the political position of cinema in a globalized and conglomerated world.
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Additional resources for Wag the Dog: A Study on Film and Reality in the Digital Age
In fact, the audio track is even more intriguing, as Billy and Barbara’s voices mix with those coming from the soap opera, generating a peculiar non-diegetic dialogue between the two diverse planes of fiction. In a film that strove to keep any flourish off the screen, such a scene stands out as an intriguing exception fraught with significance that would reveal itself in his subsequent works. 18â•… One of these is the aforementioned Avalon, which followed the box office and critical successes of Good Morning Vietnam (1987) and Rain Man (1988).
For instance, the key sequence of the presidential debate, where Dobbs attacks his opponents and the entire political system in America, is communicated to the viewer from multiple screens that evoke multiple narrative agents. For almost eight minutes, the filmic images fail to focus on one particular narrative level but keep alternating between non-diegetic images and random focalizations. 29 we find a typical framing technique in Man of the Year, as Levinson deliberately chooses to frame the leading character in a fashion that underscores the mise-en-abyme structure of televised reality, which often becomes a reflection of a reflection ad infinitum.
Starting with fiction, Branigan notes the following: A ‘fiction’ is neither simply false nor obviously true but initially is merely indeterminate and nonspecific. The challenge of fiction is to discover what it is about. 13 This passage puts forward three separate propositions about the function of fiction in the comprehension of a film. First, fiction does not represent a false world that negates our real life experience. On the contrary, it always refers to the afilmic reality and, yet, without denoting a determinate relation between the profilmic and the diegetic event, to use Souriau’s terms.
Wag the Dog: A Study on Film and Reality in the Digital Age by Eleftheria Thanouli