Home > 360MC Research & Development > Theme 2 – Spectacle (360MC Lecture – 4/11/10)

Theme 2 – Spectacle (360MC Lecture – 4/11/10)

This weeks lecture was cancelled due to the Sheffield Documentary Festival being on so most of the rest of the media group would be at that and some of the lecturers too.

The seminar group sessions with Mez were still open to go to but due to some unforseen circumstances i am unable to attend this session.  So my plan for today is to complete my interim proposal form and e-mail it to Mez for some feedback and to also go through the lecture blog and write up my own thoughts for the next theme of ‘Spectacle’ using the material that Nick has posted up on the 360mc blog.

The Situationist Movement

Two of the main vocalists of this revolutionary movement; Guy Debord and Raoul Vaneigem were at the forefront of a tense time in France in which their words would ensue a political protest.  Debord’s ‘The Society of Spectacle’ and Vaneigem’s ‘The Revolution of Everyday Life’ both looked at ideas with which have been very influential in modern day society. 

Guy Debord & Raoul Vaneigem


 (Picture on left courtesy of http://mubi.com/topics/7929?page=52)

(Picture on right courtesy of http://www.nothingness.org/SI/vaneigem.html)

The Situationist Movement material is really hard for me to get my head around as this side of ‘Spectacle’ doesn’t really captivate my interests enough to follow through with influence with my next artefact.

Man On Wire

(Picture courtesy of http://shareddarkness.com/2008/08/01/man-on-wire.aspx)

Out of blog material for this weeks lecture on spectacle i found this one in particular very interesting.  I think it is the simplistic manner with which it is based around one man defying fear and great heights and inevitably possible death that draws the spectacle theme within its context.

My take on ‘Spectacle’

When i think of spectacle i see it along the lines of something that catches peoples attention and ‘creating a spectacle’ such as these videos which i immediately think of with the theme of Spectacle.


I feel that TV has a limited scope with which it can present something on a grand scale for spectacle with the only action based spectacle to be a fight on Eastenders! The examples below are programmes which present this theme on a very simple and comedic level.  They are purely based within the public view with which they create a spectacle and ultimately draw attention towards what they are doing.

This first clip is from a Channel 4 comedy series by Dom Jolly which is set within the public eye and includes sketches such as the infamous mobile phone sketch which he answers very loudly and raises a few raised eyebrows at the annoyance of said action.

Jackass is a very popular prank show in which the cast do various different stunts and pranks which draws attention to the spectacle that they create.  I am purely embedding this video to show what different takes on spectacle there are in various forms such as TV.


Within film there are no bounds with which spectacle is diluted and presented to an audience, spectacle can take on a whole other meaning with the various elements with which it can present the story and character over to the viewer in a way that grabs attention at the same time.  Spectacle doesn’t just mean to attract atter  It can take on many different forms within the world of film and stretches over into all genres.  Here are some examples of what i consider to be ‘Spectacle’ within film.

Possibly one of my most favourite films ever; ‘(500) Days of Summer’ (2009-Directed by Marc Webb) and within this particular scene a spectacular dance routine which weaves nicely into how the main character (Joseph Gordon-Levitt <3) is feeling and the emotions that it is putting across to the viewer.

In this Jason Statham (<3) classic; ‘Tansporter’ (2002 -Directed by Louis Leterrier) spectacle is put across within the action sequences throughout and adds a spectacular and stylistic edge to what is just another action film.

Perhaps one of the most recent films to date that has a spectacle theme within is ‘Inception’ (2010-Directed by Christopher Nolan) with its very complex storyline and scenes that are absolute genius that look impossible to re-create with a budget under a billion dollars! I just think that it is a spectacle unto itself.

Music Video

A music video can inspire spectacle through the song with which it is being presented in a visual manner which the audience can draw pleasure from.

This first video by Fat Boy Slim’s ‘Praise You’ is very simplistic with its approach, but the way it draws in a crowd outside of a cinema can count for spectacle and how it is causing a disruption within a public area.

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