Knowing Not What To Believe: Digital Space and Entanglement in Life of Pi, Gravity, and Interstellar

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In this essay, I argue that Life of Pi, Gravity, and Interstellar exemplify a cinema of entanglement. I do this by analyzing how the films’ depictions of vast space are ‘sublime’, while also considering how these sublime moments are made using computer-generated imagery. This sublime is potentially paradoxical in that the images are computer-generated (i.e. ‘fake’), while film theorists have historically considered the awe inspired by cinema to depend upon the indexicality of the (analogue) image (i.e. cinematographic images depict something real, with that reality being separate from humans). However, drawing on Immanuel Kant’s ‘mathematical sublime’ and Gilles Deleuze’s ‘powers of the false’, I argue how these three films stage a sense not of sublime detachment but of sublime entanglement.
Original languageEnglish
JournalScreen Space Reconfigured
Publication statusPublished - 2 Jul 2020

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