Screen as a door


The first movie that comes to my mind when we talk about screen becoming part of the film´s narrative is Last Action Hero (1993), directed by John McTiernan. This movie basically shows how a screen is the door that could take you to the fictional  world or the other way round. Jack Slater is the fictional character interpreted by Arnold Schwarzenegger who is a police officer, who apparently is indestructible. On the other hand we have the world of Danny Madigan, which is the real world, who admires the character and the movies of Jack Slater and in a certain point in the movie he could travel to both worlds thought a magic ticket.

Two worlds connected by the threshold. For the film, between fiction and reality; for the audience, between their world and that of the film and for the actor, because Arnold plays the role of Jack Slater and also interprets himself (role and image) (Elsaesser, Hagener 2009, pg. 36). Moreover, the door to enter and exit both worlds is though the cinema screen. That could be interpreted as “without a screen there is no way to a film´s universe”. However, the movie not only shows how spectator could enter to this fictional world where you become stronger, faster, inmune to bullets, get the hot girl.It also represents how the “real world” is where not always good guys win or where you could die due to a bullet shot.  A treshold that can point two different directions for the spectator.

  • Elsaesser, T, Hagener, M, 2009, Film Theory: An Introduction Through the Senses, 1, Taylor and Francis.

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