Notes from one of my classes on Critic History of Cinema with Fran Benavente.
First the definition of Energy-Image: A image that furthermore than explaining and defining the story it prioritizes the sensation. An example of image action is the cinema of Philippe Grandieux.
In Grandieux we can see clearly what is an energy-image, the concept of an image that purely transmits the primitive forces that drive the human being.
From this concept we go with Thoret and his book Le cinema américain des amnées 70. París: Cahiers du Cinéma, 2006
Thoret proposes that the base of American Cinema is not the image-action but the one of image-energy, and that action and violence is only one of the ways that american cinema found to express this energy.
The theory gets more interesting when he starts analyzing that in the New Hollywood Cinema of the 70’s we can start analyzing a reflex of a society that reach a point where there was no more “acceptable” ways of expressing violence and when confroted with this impossibility what we see is that violence shows itself as a social patalogy.
After having conquered the west, fought the WW2 and not having an outlet anymore violence turns from being an act against others to be a patology against itself.
Some examples of films that we can observer this.
The Wild Bunch
The Big Shave
In one of his first shorts we can analyze the seeds of repressed violence that continue througaout Scorcese career.
The desconruction of western genre and super sensorial ending of this Hellman classic movie.
Starts at 1:15:00
Albert and David Maysles
What happens with this repressed energy after the counter culture has been emptied.