From the mid-1940s, when Maurice Merleau-Ponty gave a lecture on film at the Institut des hautes études cinématographiques in Paris, which was subsequently published as ‘Le Cinéma et la nouvelle psychologie’ (‘Cinema and the New Psychology’), film scholars have shown a keen interest in the relationship between his philosophy and cinema.
Of the large human symbolic constructions, fiction is probably the most ancient and universal. It concerns every one of us and constitutes an important part of our mental activity. Its main purpose is to duplicate our direct experience of the world while giving it symbolic form; hence its cognitive and even reflexive aspects.
Christian Metz is remembered today as having almost single-handedly transformed the culture of film studies. This widely held view was summarized by one commentator, who wrote that “with Metz a new research paradigm is born, as well as a new generation of scholars.