[Marxism] Fwd: Reading Trotsky While Watching Kurosawa » CounterPunch: Tells the Facts, Names the Names

Charles Faulkner lacenaire at comcast.net
Sat Dec 27 03:02:18 MST 2014

thanks louis. i want to go back and read more of your film criticism and your article, "trotsky on revolutionary art" (this weekend). 

here's a provocative gem from this article. 

" Art is not propaganda. It is instead a way for people to connect with deeper humanitarian impulses that lay buried beneath the grime of daily life in a capitalist society growing ever more barbarian by the day." 

is this meant as a complete definition? for art? film art? narrative art? 

i like the sentiment but i want to say that it still seems a little restrictive despite broadening a notion of art as pure propaganda. at the danger of appearing ignorant, degenerate or even pedantic i think there are itches i want to scratch that are not overtly humanitarian, or humane even. perhaps "human impulses" fits better what i want. 

is this what you meant? 

----- Original Message -----

From: "Louis Proyect via Marxism" <marxism at lists.csbs.utah.edu> 
To: "Charles Faulkner" <lacenaire at comcast.net> 
Sent: Friday, December 26, 2014 11:50:22 AM 
Subject: [Marxism] Fwd: Reading Trotsky While Watching Kurosawa » CounterPunch: Tells the Facts, Names the Names 

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In Search of a Marxist Method for Film Criticism 
Reading Trotsky While Watching Kurosawa 

A couple of weeks ago an Australian friend and fellow Marxist raised 
some interesting questions about film: 

I have just moved to the capital city of the state and attended my 
first film festival. I have always enjoyed movies but in the past have 
been living in regional centers. 

It got me thinking about what constitutes a “good movie” and yourself 
and David Walsh are the only two Marxist movie critics I can think of. 
David never seems to like anything very much and his discussion of 
culture – which is interesting- relies heavily on Trotsky’s ‘Literature 
and Revolution’. 

I know you have written in passing about the sort of movies you like 
but wondered if you’d written more systematic about Marxism movie criticism. 

Despite having written over nine hundred film reviews in the past twenty 
years or so, I have never really given much thought to the question of 
“Marxist movie criticism”. 

Unfortunately Walsh has stopped writing film reviews for the World 
Socialist Website, which for my money was the only thing worth reading 
there. It’s a dirty little secret but most of the material that appears 
on wsws.org is extracted from the bourgeois press and then spiked with 
Marxist rhetoric about how evil the capitalist system is, as if we 
needed any reminding. I’d rather read the NY Times and make such 
observations myself. 

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