Joanna Hoggs shared her views on recent developments that could be dangerous to the film industry, particularly her field, arthouse cinema. The British director recently launched her acclaimed movie The Souvenir, which won the Grand Jury prize at the Sundance film festival. She clarified her positions within the cinema industry debate at a screening in London on Tuesday of a freshly restored silent film.
She took the opportunity to compare the importance of restored films, with what is becoming the world of cinema now, particularly with the markets it chooses to support. “It’s particularly timely to keep thinking about this kind of restoration work when the world of cinema is changing”, she said. “There’s a certain kind of cinema, but I’m not sure if you can call it cinema, that’s very homogenised in a way, that’s not created out of a real passion.”
Indeed, the debate on cinema productions, which has seen superheros films at the centre of accusations of mediocrity, found the echoes of many voices expressing the same worries, about what can be defined as cinema and what can not, or what could be ‘cinema’ in the future.
In particular, the director thought that the most attacked field would be the one in which the cinematographic reality is able to evoke inspiration and authenticity, important elements that not all the “certain kind of cinema” are able to produce. Her speech refers clearly to Marvel movies, which have been criticized as well by Martin Scorsese who told Empire last month that he considered them “not cinema”.
In the end, Hogg suggested that the importance we give to cinematographic heritage have to be a moral obligation that can turn into a gift for future generations. “It would be very selfish of us not to be concerned with our culture and think of the future. It just seems incredibly careless of us not to look after an art form that’s still so young.”