Ch 7. Must Films Have Narrators?


It seems apparent that if there's a narrative, there's got to be a narrator. Besides,  how else could one gain access to a fictional world without the aid of a narrator?  This chapter examines the arguments for and against the claim that film must have narrators. It begins with the competing models of film narration offered by Bordwell and Chatmann. The chapter moves on to Wilson's sophisticated defense of the necessity of implied narrators. The best case for implied narrators comes from unreliable narration. I discuss Wilson's analysis of You Only Live Once (Lang, 1937) and other less controversial examples, including Polanski's The Tenant. The chapter then examines Kania's and Currie's forceful objections to the ubiquity of cinematic narrators.

PhilPapers Bibliography

YouTube Channel - Playlist for Ch 7 [here]

Other Resources

PhilosophyTV: Thomson-Jones and Wilson