The Shadow Self in Film

Projecting the Unconscious Other


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About the Book

This book examines 13 movies that deal with the protagonist and his projected “other.” The cinematic Other is interpreted as an unconscious personality, a denied part of the protagonist that appears in his life as a shadowy menace who won’t go away. Devoting a chapter to each movie, the book starts with Mamoulian’s Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde and three cinematic pairs: two Hitchcock films, Shadow of a Doubt and Strangers on a Train; two versions of Cape Fear, J. Lee Thompson’s 1962 original and Martin Scorsese’s 1991 remake; and a pair of Clint Eastwood films, In the Line of Fire and Blood Work. The book then examines Something Wild, Sea of Love, Fight Club, Desperately Seeking Susan, Apocalypse Now and The Lives of Others. Overall the book aims to show how movies envision the unconscious Other we all too often project on other people.

About the Author(s)

Former film and music teacher Gershon Reiter lives in Israel.

Bibliographic Details

Gershon Reiter
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 224
Bibliographic Info: notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2014
pISBN: 978-0-7864-7664-0
eISBN: 978-1-4766-1247-8
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Table of Contents

Introduction: From Enkidu to Mr. Hyde  1

1. Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde: Envisioning the Other 11
2. Shadow of a Doubt: The Other by Numbers 22
3. Strangers on a Train: Playing Doubles 35
4. Cape Fear (1962): Picturing the Other 51
5. Cape Fear (1991): The Other Wronged 64
6. In the Line of Fire: The Knowing Other 82
7. Blood Work: Double Feature 98
8. Something Wild: The Other Half 110
9. Sea of Love: The Feminine Other 125
10. Fight Club: The Imagined Other  140
11. Desperately Seeking Susan: Seeking the Other 159
12. Apocalypse Now: The Other Story 169
13. The Lives of Others: The Others of Our Lives 187
Chapter Notes 203
Bibliography 207
Index 209