Do we have the right to beautify war?
Photographing warriors like models, Hollywood stars?
I asked myself this question when I saw the photos. Attractiveness Famous celebrity photographer Annie Leibovitz shoots Volodymyr Zelensky and Olena Zelenska for a fashion magazine. practice.
The Glamorization War
In one of these photos, the president of Ukraine is seen lovingly hugging his wife, looking at the camera.
Looks like Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez.
In another, we see the First Lady of Ukraine (immaculately dressed) in a magnificent blue coat, surrounded by three heavily armed soldiers standing guard.
A photo taken at the scene of a recent Russian military attack is beautifully framed. If it weren’t for the three players and wreckage (of a plane? of a train?) acting as a backdrop, you’d think you were looking at a fashion photo.
If the price of the coat does not appear under the photo…
Looking at these photos brings to mind a famous speech by filmmaker and critic Jacques Rivette. Cinema Notebooks In June 1961.
The text sparked a long debate about the limits of aesthetics when depicting a scene of disaster.
Let me tell you the story…
An immoral travel shoot?
That month, Italian director Gillo Pontecorvo (who would rise to fame five years later Battle of AlgiersA brilliant political film considered a classic of the genre orders Michel Brault) released his last film on French screens. Starring American Susan Strasberg and Frenchwoman Emmanuelle Riva. Capo A Jewish youth sent to a concentration camp is told about his descent into hell.
In one famous shot, an inmate hangs himself from an electric fence.
Instead of filming the scene in a relaxed manner, Pontecorvo decided to create a “beautiful image” by doing a slow tracking shot to better frame the woman’s corpse.
This scandalized Jacques Rivette.
“Look inside Capo, a scene in which Emmanuel Riva’s character hangs himself on an electrified wire; At this point, the man who decides to take a forward tracking shot to reshape the corpse at a low angle, careful to register the raised arm correctly at an angle to his final structure, this man deserves only deep contempt. ,” he wrote.
The film industry has been talking about this criticism for several months.
How far can we take the war? Attractiveness Advancing a cause?
Is training necessary?
Pictures practice Liven up the discussion.
Before writing this column, I showed my girlfriend photos of Zelensky and his wife.
“The media doesn’t talk about this terrible war anymore,” he told me. If these photographs – and, above all, the text that accompanies them – can keep this story alive, why not? »
In short, Sophie was not angry.
On the other hand, I feel a certain discomfort, not to say a certain discomfort.
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