SIFF Film Center Seattle Center
Sun., Jan. 28, 2-5 p.m. 2018
Recommended by Charles Mudede
Before attending this one-day class led by local film historian and scholar John Trafton (it will explore three LA films by Michael Mann: Heat, Collateral, and L.A. Takedown), I highly recommend reading Capitalist Realism: Is There No Alternative? by the late Mark Fisher (aka K-Punk). It’s a short book (86 pages) and contains an excellent section on Mann’s masterpiece, the heist film Heat. Fisher argues that one of the best ways to understand the transition from industrial to postindustrial US is to watch and compare Mann’s Heat (1995) with crime films by Francis Ford Coppola and Martin Scorsese (the 1970s). My point is this: Mann’s work cannot be dismissed as nothing but style: shiny surfaces, sharp suits, slick haircuts. His films in the 1980s and 1990s describe the homo economicus who roams the ruins of Reuther’s Treaty of Detroit.