A beginning has to begin somewhere doesn’t it? It doesn’t really matter when it happens, so long as it happens.
I’m putting together my thesis proposal for the second time. I’m not getting graded on it, it’s just to present my ideas to the grad committee because they, essentially, didn’t think I had my shit together the first time around. Fair enough. I was quite upset at first but the more I think about it, the more I (have resigned myself to the fact) think that maybe they’re right. Maybe I don’t have my shit together, maybe it’s not enough to want to write my thesis and finish my MA – maybe I’m not up to the task of doing anything beyond an undergrad. I can finish my thesis, I can get my MA, but it won’t do me any good because I may just not be good enough to go beyond that. No matter how much I want to.
It’s not a defeatist attitude I’m taking. No matter how “woe is me” that sounded. But at a certain point, shouldn’t you just stop trying something if you’re not getting the results you want or have hoped for? Especially if no one’s on your side.
I love what cinema does to the mind. I think it’s amazing that a group of strangers can sit in a dark room, watch the flashes of images and colours strung together by the combined work of editors, directors, actors, sound techs, etc, and experience something very unique from the person next to them. A tree isn’t just a tree when it’s up on a screen. The leaves aren’t really blowing in the wind and the sound the wind makes isn’t actually real. But not everyone perceives it as such. The cinematic experience is such an individual group experience that perception and interpretation have so many connotations that it seems unlikely to be able to talk about the affects of cinema on society and culture. But, it’s not that difficult at all. At a certain point, you break down the experience not by film, but by technique(s). Plot and story arches take on a different meaning when you begin to take into account camera angles, use of colour, or even use of sound. The leaves falling off a tree don’t necessarily mean the change of season, but become a metaphor for life – everything comes to an end. Or for new life, re-growth, or is simply something aesthetically pleasing to look at.
I certainly hadn’t intended to wax poetic. It’s one of the cheesier things that I do. Somehow I find that doing so puts me back in the headspace that two-thirds of the grad committee are wrong about me. I may not fit their mold of an academic, I’m not even really trying to *be* an “academic”. But isn’t it interesting that all over the world, films are being made, and each one is a tiny window into a culture, a society – a microcosm of our own individual and group-experienced world?