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Themesicon: navigation pathArt and Cinematographyicon: navigation pathMulvey/Wollen

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Seven finally shows the image of a small maze game. A mercury ball must be led through a labyrinthine set of passageways to the central field. This game might be understood as a metaphor of the film as a whole, which sets representation over narration. The latter is not the driving essence of the film, but rather a labyrinthine forwards and backwards interpreted for the sake of representation. At the same time, this game symbolizes the «Riddles of the Sphinx», which do not seek to force out a truth, but rather pose questions, thus not moving in a straight line towards a finality (as the film drives towards its conclusion). Instead, at issue is a decoding of a text from a constantly new approach, a continually new attempt that extends beyond the straightforward course of the images.

10. The Riddles of the Cinema (Between Intertexuality, Redemption, and the DVD Format)

In our current understanding, the Sphinx is a puzzling, opaque being. In the Egyptian meaning, it also signifies «living statue.» This ancient meaning anticipates something of the «living image» of the cinema, which


wins its flux-character of becoming from static images, the apparatus of the cinematographer, and the participation and decoding of the spectators. To that extent, the title of «Riddles of the Spinx» could also be translated in an extended sense as «riddles of the cinema.» Peter Wollen had already tried to grasp this riddle of the cinema with his notion of the cinema complex. In the encounter between different codes, a cinematographic writing style emerges which drives the gesture of (type) setting and crossing-out in the struggle of images and codes in constantly new linkages and further dissemination. Wollen himself already alluded to the fact that this practice might extend beyond a countercinema and that it involves something more than a counter-strategy. If we describe the work of Laura Mulvey and Peter Wollen from the 1970s instead with the French concept of deconstruction, this forces us to look especially at their intertextual work on and with the cinema. But the work on the codes cannot be summed up with the label of deconstruction. Far more than that, it today still allows itself be pushed in new directions, making legible more than revolutionary pathos or a cinematographic

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