Chris Marker – La Jetée

As part of my Assignment 3: Monochrome feedback, my tutor recommended that I take a look at Chris Marker’s film ‘La Jetée’. This was partly because the entire film is made up of a monochrome photo montage and I had experimented with using some of my photos taken at Redcar beach to create a photo film.

Chris Marker’s film (below is an excerpt from it) was credited with being the inspiration for the sci-fi film 12 Monkeys, which I had enjoyed watching when I was younger. Therefore I was very interested to see what such an iconic film La Jetée would be like and how I could compare it to my own photo montage.

La Jetée tells the story of post-nuclear war experiment in time travel. A voice over provides a narrative to go with the photographs. There is a very sinister feel to the film, with very little atmospheric sound, the viewer focus’ more on each image with little distraction. I can see how this would have been quite frightening in the 1960s, since the still images mean there are gaps in the narrative, we only see the key moments that Marker has chosen to share. The viewer is left to create the unseen parts of the story. This contrasted with my own film where the sequence of shots were very close together in time to produce motion, with an atmospheric soundtrack and no clear narrative.

Combining photos with film to produce narratives is something I’d like to pursue further.

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About Matt

Photography degree student with the Open College of the Arts.
This entry was posted in DPP, Inspiration, Project 3: Processing the Image, Reflections and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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