Shooting the Moon

Shooting the Moon

The first book to examine the multiple and contradictory strategies for putting the moon on film.


CATEGORIZED IN

Films about the moon show that even after the lunar landing of 1969 our celestial neighbor has lost none of its aptitude for being made of green cheese. In fact, as soon as you put the moon on screen it is lost. This is equally true for a wide range of moon films, including the theatricality of Méliès, the incredulity of camp, the illegibility of footage shot by Apollo astronauts and the revisionary history of Transformers 3. Yet, as paradoxical as it might seem at first, it is only when we "lose sight" of the moon that lunar truths begin to come forth. This is because fantastic elements of the moon—by their mere absurdity—can indicate non-fantastic elements. However, what is of interest here is not realistic or fantastic lunar truths but rather that the moon is an object which invites, or even demands, more than one truth at once.

REVIEWS & ENDORSEMENTS

[Those who] engage with Willems’s scholarly theories will certainly view the moon and its representation in cinema from a much more informed and opinionated perspective. Though thousands of miles away, our lunar neighbor feels within arm’s reach through Willems’s ardent, detailed analyses. Kailyn Warpole ~ Film Matters magazine, Intellect

Synopsis: Films about the moon show that even after the lunar landing of 1969 our celestial neighbor has lost none of its aptitude for being made of green cheese. In fact, as soon as you put the moon on screen it is lost. This is equally true for a wide range of moon films, including the theatricality of Melies, the incredulity of camp, the illegibility of footage shot by Apollo astronauts and the revisionary history of Transformers 3. Yet, as paradoxical as it might seem at first, it is only when we "lose sight" of the moon that lunar truths begin to come forth. This is because fantastic elements of the moon, by their mere absurdity, can indicate non-fantastic elements. However, what is of interest in Brian Williams' "Shooting the Moon" is not realistic or fantastic lunar truths but rather that the moon is an object which invites, or even demands, more than one truth at once. Critique: An inherently fascinating, informative, and thoughtful read, "Shooting the Moon" by Brian Williams (Assistant Professor of Literature and Film Theory at the University of Split, Croatia) is an extraordinary read and very highly recommended for both community and academic library Cinematic Studies reference collections. For personal reading lists it should be noted that "Shooting the Moon" is also available in an inexpensive Kindle edition ($0.99). Paul T. Vogel Reviewer ~ Paul T. Vogel, Midwest Book Review

Shooting the Moon shows how our most abiding object or objective on reality’s horizon was overshot and displaced by the other reality of realization of our wish fantasies. When we ask for the moon we travel a jump cut from an idealized past to a future of wish fulfillment lying deep inside the film medium and its ongoing history. Willems' brilliant exhibition of this exemplary fantasy artefact is at the same time a decisive contribution to the phenomenology of cinema. ~ Laurence A. Rickels, Art and Theory department at the Academy of Fine Arts, Karlsruhe, author of Germany: A Science Fiction, Personal

Willems' text impressively traces the conceptual consequences of the moon's appearance in roughly a century of film. Utilizing a wide-range of contemporary continental philosophy, Shooting the Moon treats the familiar lunar body less as site of conventional exploration and more of a device that constructively alienates our philosophical investment in being earth-bound thinkers...the moon becomes a particularly strange free-floating camera. ~ Ben Woodard, author of On an Ungrounded Earth: Towards a New Geophilosophy

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Brian Willems
Brian Willems Brian Willems is assistant professor of literature and film theory at the University of Split, Croatia. He is the author of Hopkins and Heid...
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