Moving Viewers: American Film and the Spectator's Experience
Everyone knows the thrill of being transported by a film, but what is it that makes movie watching such a compelling emotional experience? In Moving Viewers, Carl Plantinga explores this question and the implications of its answer for aesthetics, the psychology of spectatorship, and the place of movies in culture. Through an in-depth discussion of mainstream Hollywood films, Plantinga investigates what he terms "the paradox of negative emotion" and the function of mainstream narratives as ritualistic fantasies. He describes the sensual nature of the movies and shows how film emotions are often elicited for rhetorical purposes. He uses cognitive science and philosophical aesthetics to demonstrate why cinema may deliver a similar emotional charge for diverse audiences.
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aesthetic affective experience affective response Alfred Hitchcock allegiance apparatus theory argue artifact emotions audience automatic behavior bodily Bordwell camera Carroll catharsis chapter character's cinema claim classical Hollywood classical Hollywood cinema cognitive cognitive-perceptual concern-based construals concerns congruent conscious context conventional cultural David Bordwell desires direct emotions elicit emotion emotional contagion emotional responses emotions and affects emotions elicited empathy example fantasy fear feel fiction film theory film viewing film-elicited film's filmmakers function genres goals Hitchcock Hollywood films human ideological images Jack's kind melodrama meta-emotions mirror neurons mood moral narration negative emotions object paradigm scenarios particular physiological pleasures protagonist psychoanalytic psychoanalytic film theory psychological relation rhetorical romantic romantic love Royal Tenenbaums scene screen theory sense sentimental situation Smith social sociomoral disgust spectator spectator response spectator's spectatorship Stella Dallas story structure suspense sympathetic emotions sympathy synesthetic theorists thought tion Titanic tive typically unconscious University Press viewer visceral voyeurism York