Crying in the cinema: Juliette Binoche as a silently weeping viewer in Abbas Kiarostami’s Shirin (2008) © Cinema Guild

Thu, 04/13/2017

Goethe-Institut Los Angeles

5750 Wilshire Boulevard
Suite 100
Los Angeles, CA 90036

Crying in the cinema: Juliette Binoche as a silently weeping viewer in Abbas Kiarostami’s Shirin (2008)

Multimedia presentation by Film Scholar Julian Hanich

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The cinema is one of the foremost places of shedding tears in Western cultures, and movies are regularly listed among the strongest triggers of tears. As the German philosopher Walter Benjamin once claimed, in the cinema people who are no longer moved or touched by anything in everyday life learn to cry again. In this lecture and multimedia presentation, Julian Hanich will talk about how we, as film spectators, experience our tears in the movie theater: What is it actually like to cry when other viewers are sitting next to us? Hanich focuses on five crucial features that characterize cinematic weeping, and what features distinguish various types of crying. As it will turn out, tears can involve embarrassment and shame, but can they can also come with the pleasure of sharing an emotion.
Q&A and reception follow the presentation.
Julian Hanich is Associate Professor of Film Studies at the University of Groningen. He is the author of two books: Cinematic Emotion in Horror Films and Thrillers: The Aesthetic Paradox of Pleasurable Fear (2010) and The Audience Effect: On the Collective Cinema Experience (forthcoming in fall 2017). In his research Hanich focuses on the emotions and affects of movie audiences.  Currently, Hanich is the recipient of a three-week residency in the Wilkinson College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences at Chapman University, the purpose of which is to promote academic exchange between Europe and the US., whereby Hanich’s specific focus is on viewer's emotions. Occasionally, Hanich also writes as a film critic for the German outlet Spiegel ONLINE. 

$1 validated parking (for events only) on weekdays after 6:00 pm and all day on weekends in the Wilshire Courtyard West underground garage-P1.