Film And Art In Gordon Graham's Philosophy Of The Arts

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The author of Philosophy of The Arts, Gordon Graham, holds the controversial belief that film has contributed surprisingly little to art. Graham claims that this medium has failed, time and time again, to give any significant art, despite it being a super-medium. While he does, in fact, defend the claim that film is an art form, he does not seem to support the idea that film is important, or high, art. As Graham sees it, this medium is one incapable of achieving artistic greatness. This essay will attempt to evaluate Graham’s various claims about film as a failing super-medium, and analyze possible benefits of collaboration in film and art. Graham’s view of film as a lesser art can be explained by film’s commercial aspects and overexposure. …show more content…
Graham believes that “relatively little of lasting artistic significance has emerged” from film (PA 123). He seems to source this back to the potential fragmentation that filmmaking is prone to. Since there are so many hands on a film before it is released, and there are so many components to it, it is fair to argue that the film can lack unity. However, a good director can prevent this from happening. It is the their job to guide the overall direction of the film, and shape the final project. Yet Graham seems to discredit the director’s role in filmmaking, stating that his role is “choosing rather than creating” (PA 124) But is that not what art is all about? A painter chooses his materials carefully: which brushes, surfaces, subject, colors, and technique to implement. The painter chooses in order to create a final artistic product, as does the director. If the director is not satisfied with any aspect of the product, they are able to redirect it. If anything inhibits this process, it is the commerciality involved with filmmaking and Hollywood, and the stardom that …show more content…
He claims that films only score in a few categories at the Academy Awards, and sometimes only a single category (PA 123). It is unfair to judge a film by the number of awards it has received, at least in an artistic sense. No other artistic medium has one ultimate authority to judge its artistic level or success, and it is unfair to judge film’s artistic level or success this way. No one person or group decided that The Birth of Venus, Ecstasy of Saint Teresa, American Gothic, or Guernica are some of the greatest works of all time in their respective fields. Rather, it is just a known fact that these pieces are phenomenal. It is simply common knowledge. It is peculiar that we cannot respect this sort of common knowledge when it comes to film. It may be due to the fact that the field is flooded with so many movies, and it seems logically impossible for someone to watch every film created. I attribute this to the stardom associated with Hollywood. It is undeniable that people relate Hollywood and film with fame and fortune, and that those are highly sought after things. Many stars, directors, writers, and composers flock to Hollywood for said fame and fortune, which floods the market with mediocrity. Furthermore, because of the commercial aspects of film, this mediocrity is very often showcased more so than true talent and true art. People who want to be famous are more likely to turn to Hollywood than

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