Philosophical Movies

I posted this today on a philosophy discussion board asking to list four philosophical movies:

"1. A.I.

Seriously, this film is one of the most interesting philosophical movies - and talks about all the big questions - what is real? How would we know? How would we communicate it? It's Pinocchio meets Blade Runner, set up by Stanley Kubrick and filmed by Steven Spielberg. Some will say he ruined it with his Hollywood ending, but I completely disagree. The ending is as much of a question as the ending of Blade Runner.

2. Paranoia Agent

An Anime T.V. Series directed by the same director as Tokyo Godfathers and Paprika, Satoshi Kon. I think Paranoia Agent is by far his best work, covering thoughts about identity, the relationship of popular culture to thought, morality, and, best of all, the moral status of nostalgia. Unlike so many other philosophical movies (A.I., Blade Runner, etc...) Kon touches on the big questions, but deals more with specific questions - like why we want to be nostalgic, and how it affects us.

3. One Hour Photo

Morality. Identity. Character. And Photographs.

4. Lawrence of Arabia

Morality. Platonic ideals. Mortality. Western and Eastern cultures clashing. War, killing, and the triumph of will. What more could you ask for?

So many great movies have been posted, but those are four favorites for me. I think one thread that connects them is the way philosophy is not just questioned, it is lived, which is so necessary to good film...

Also, I think films do not need to have philosophical lines to be philosophical films - sometimes, I think, philosophically, Neo dodging bullets may be the most philosophical statement of the Matrix - the ultimately very Platonic belief that the rules can be broken, the cave has an escape."

I wanted to share it with you few because I really like the last point - perhaps the most Platonic part of Platonism is to believe the rules will be broken for you... but isn't that what so many of us hope for?

More to follow in Platonism... there's one topic I'm not going circle warily before assaulting...


Anonymous said...

"there's one topic I'm not going circle warily before assaulting..."?

I think you muddled the positive and negative. ^_^


Wallis said...

Did I? :)