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Apocalypse-Cinema2012 and Other Ends of the World$
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Peter Szendy

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780823264803

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: January 2016

DOI: 10.5422/fordham/9780823264803.001.0001

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A.I., or The Freeze

A.I., or The Freeze

(p.41) Chapter 6 A.I., or The Freeze

Peter Szendy

Fordham University Press

This chapter first considers the cinematic tropes of freezing and an off-screen voice present in The Day After Tomorrow (2004), Sunshine (Danny Boyle, 2004), and Quintet (Robert Altman, 1979). It then turns to Steven Spielberg's Artificial Intelligence: AI (2001), which utilizes the same tropes as it unfurls into a large-scale narrative. It also discusses how certain shots are impossible to declare living or dead. Simply frozen or definitively extinguished, numbed yet potentially mobile or petrified forever as bas-reliefs, they seem to tremble with cold as they hesitate between the life and death of their movement. They are in a sense living-dead, that is to say spectral through their filmic movement (and not through what they show). The exemplary ones are the ones from the beginning of Melancholia (Lars von Trier, 2011).

Keywords:   Artificial Intelligence, Steven Spielberg, freeze-framing, apocalypse-cinema, apocalyptic film, apocalyptic genre

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