Archives For Buster Keaton

Book by Robert Stam

Film and Dream: Sherlock Jr

Stam finds clear allegory in Buster Keatons “Sherlock Jr” for the audience experience of identifying with the screen.

“Buster’s clumsy but finally successful attempts at penetration comically literalize, I think, the processes whereby spectators identify with the diegesis and characters of a classic fiction film.”

Stam refers to Metz’s “The Imaginary Signifier”. He notes that “before we can identify with characters we must first identify with the cameras act of seeing. This could be referred to the tradition or trope of the establishing shot, Ozu’s pillow shots, and perhaps Howard Hawk’s tight in, opening close-ups.