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The Current Debate: “Nope” and the Society of the Spectacle

Jordan Peele’s Nope is a UFO story where characters aren’t concerned with killing an alien so much as capturing it on camera. In that regard, it’s an extraterrestrial thriller that feels very much in sync with our zeitgeist, one whose chief preoccupation revolves around our struggles to process singular, horrific happenings in an age when they are so swiftly commodified into something sellable, scrollable, and endlessly watchable. 

Shot Verse Shot: "Benediction" and Poetry in Cinema

Films about art and artists face different obstacles in making the art itself cinematic. A movie about a painter, like Pollock (2000) or My Left Foot (1989), can simply observe them at work. Keiichi Hara’s animated film Miss Hokusai (2015), about the artist Hokusai and his daughter, can visually quote its subject’s ukiyo-e prints directly. On the same wavelength, Dorota Kobiela and Hugh Welchman’s Loving Vincent (2017) tells of van Gogh’s final days with animation composed of oil painting cels imitating the artist’s own style. Writing is more difficult to depict. “Writer”…


Honoring Black History Month, our focus celebrates the incredible wealth of Black artistry, both in front of and behind the camera. From acclaimed classics to hidden treasures, these distinctive achievements in film look to the past, reflect the present, and gesture to the future of cinema.