The Self-Sabotaging Hero: What I Learned from Rewatching Top Gun after 32 years

Top Gun is arguably the most iconic movie of the 1980’s and still one of the coolest movies ever produced up to date. F-14 Tomcat fighter jets taking off from aircraft carriers; an inspring soundtrack with invigorating guitar tunes; fast motorbikes and fancy sunglasses; sweating, muscle-packed bodies playing beach volleyball, and – last but not least – a young, shiny, and cocky Tom Cruise. It … Continue reading The Self-Sabotaging Hero: What I Learned from Rewatching Top Gun after 32 years

Love, Betrayal and Dante’s Judgement in The English Patient

“You can’t save someone from themselves”, says the Brazilian poet Paulo Coelho. And yet, the more we love someone, the less we seem to be able to resist the urge to try. Coelho’s aphorism could very well be the preface to Anthony Minghella’s movie The English Patient from 1996, based on Michael Ondaatje’s homonymous novel. The movie actually tells 2 storylines, who become interlaced by … Continue reading Love, Betrayal and Dante’s Judgement in The English Patient

Ego, Love and the Self in Lisa Joy’s Reminiscence (2021)

While science fiction often offers a detached look on mostly sociocultural or historical aspects of human civilization, near-future-scenarios like the Cyberpunk-genre seem to have a natural affinity to focus on existential aspects of the human condition. Lisa Joy’s Reminiscence is a romantic thriller set in just such a near future neo-noir scenario. It is very closely related to the Cyberpunk-genre, but offers an original atmosphere … Continue reading Ego, Love and the Self in Lisa Joy’s Reminiscence (2021)

The burning hand in Dune’s “Gom Jabbar”- and in Fight Club’s “Chemical Burn”-scene

The Gom Jabbar scene from Dune and the Chemical Burn scene from Fight Club share strong structural similarities. The most general similarity between these two scenes is that both Paul Atreides and the narrator from Fight Club (“Jack”) are being tested. They are being tested to suffer pain in their right hand. This similarity is what raises my interest to compare these two scenes and … Continue reading The burning hand in Dune’s “Gom Jabbar”- and in Fight Club’s “Chemical Burn”-scene

Black Swan: The Incorporation of the Female Shadow

Meta-mythological stories tell ancient myths in a modern setting. As such, they can be very powerful and expressive in literature and film. They are able to transport deep truths about the human condition in a modern, accessible way. Black Swan, written by Mark Heyman and directed by Darren Aronofsky, adopts the Swan Lake myth to tell the story of the ambitious ballet dancer Nina, played … Continue reading Black Swan: The Incorporation of the Female Shadow

Tenet Explained, Part 2: The Prestige and Temporal Pincers

This article is the second part of a series about Christopher Nolan’s Tenet. The subject of this essay is rather complex and hard to follow without a solid knowledge of the movie. If you haven’t read part 1 yet, you can (and should) read it here. After an introduction into the general aspects of Tenet, this second article will dig deeper into the details of … Continue reading Tenet Explained, Part 2: The Prestige and Temporal Pincers

Between Chaos and Order: a symbolic perspective on Dr. Zhivago

Dr. Zhivago, Boris Pasternak’s great novel and the thereon based movie, is much more than just a love story. Although being an undoubtetly principal aspect of the plot, the love story has more to it than meets the eye. Set in the turmoils of Russia’s 1910’s, it shows us the uprise of Bolshevikism during WWI and its pursuit to create a perfect political state, to … Continue reading Between Chaos and Order: a symbolic perspective on Dr. Zhivago