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Perverts Guide to Ideology [Import]

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Product Details

  • Format: Black & White, Enhanced, Widescreen, NTSC, Import
  • Language: English
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.77:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Studio: Zeitgeist Films
  • Release Date: Feb. 18 2014
  • ASIN: B00GX33J7E

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Amazon.com: 26 reviews
16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
About as fun as critical theory gets! March 14 2014
By Day2 - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
This is not to say Zizek provides a clear or easy message, and to my lay understanding he appears to jump around quite a bit without and easy roadmap. Strangely this neither interfered with my simple enjoyment of his amusing subjects for deep analysis, his perhaps unintentional sense of comic timing, or his truly engaging constructions of the subtle cues in superficial trends of society.

No, this wasn't an epiphany of the sort you can easily explain to others. But where Zizek shines for me is in each individual example. Most of them ring true in a way that you can feel broadening your perspective on THAT particular example. And while his examples didn't really add up to a big WOW for me at the end of the film, I'm not sure critical theorists even aim for that, as their "answer" could be taken for propaganda and clutched as"truth" like any other message of propaganda.

Maybe I'm too dim to see the big picture behind critical theorists like Zizek, Benjamin, and Derrida, but I feel delightfully challenged by their efforts, one by one, and feel that this movie reminded me to look beneath the obvious message of pop culture iconography and idealism for more subtle dynamics of control and subversion.

Don't be scared off by any of this as the opening segment praises the 1988 John Carpenter movie, "THEY LIVE" for it's astute critique on consumer culture. And he's right! I can't wait to dig up this old film as it appears to be excellent social satire made palatable with a monster movie approach.

Look, if you're a PhD student this might be too remedial or lightweight for you to use for your thesis, but as a layman who seeks out new philosophical ideas to expand my perception of the world, I loved it.

I don't want the answer Zizek doesn't provide; I want new tools to peel the onion of existence back a layer or two and figure out more from there. I was not let down.

Highly recommended.
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
Rambling meditation on film and pop culture Feb. 18 2014
By DVD Verdict - Published on Amazon.com
Format: DVD
Slovenian philosopher Slavoj Zizek and director Sophie Fiennes, who collaborated on The Pervert's Guide to Cinema, join forces once again for a rambling meditation on film and pop culture in The Pervert's Guide to Ideology.

It's a hilarious treatise on how Hollywood expresses important cultural political ideals through how characters move through plots, and the discussion is fast, funny, and furious. It is a thinking man's treatise on cinema, and what's fun is they are using populist pieces rather than underground cinema that often has its own political agenda on display. No long looks at My Dinner with Andre, rather here we have analysis of the big summer blockbusters on what they do to our state of mind, psychoanalysis, and dreams.

DVD is a great way to experience this film, especially with a booklet that provides references to the films as well as statements from the director and production notes. Also included as an extra feature is a half-hour discussion with Sophie and Slavoj at a museum screening, which serves to explain the genesis of the project as well as provide more rants and raves. The visual presentation from HD elements is fine, although often the quality is dependent on the age of a film they are talking about. This is a talking-head-interspersed-with-clips kind of affair. Sound is a simple English stereo with subtitles for those who are hard of hearing or have difficulty following the stream-of-thought Slovenian shouting off the screen at them. The DVD is a great presentation, and even a step-up from the museum screenings that most people attended to first see this movie.

The Pervert's Guide to Ideology is a smart and playful ride that explores cinema and culture through unlikely avenues. It's a film that asks you to consider They Live as a masterpiece of ideological meditation. It is John Carpenter's statement about dictatorship through democracy and also a savvy update of Invasion of the Body Snatchers that has a firm grasp of propaganda. That's just something that is thrown out in the first three minutes of the film which runs over two hours on Slavoj's caffeine-fueled rants. He examines American life through our ultimate expression, the collective dreams we call movies.

Brett Cullum, VERDICT

Read the full review at dvdverdict.com
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Windbag Gasbag Humbuggery At Its Finest June 6 2014
By G. Charles Steiner - Published on Amazon.com
This review is for: The Pervert's Guide to Ideology

The Nutty Lying Professor and His Cloak of Invisibility:

"Try to find . . . some principles from which you can deduce conclusions that yield empirically testable propositions where . . . you can explain how it goes to a five-year old. See if you can find that when the fancy words are decoded. I can't. So I'm not interested in that kind of posturing. Zizek is an extreme example of this. I don't see anything in what he's saying."

-- Noam Chomsky

Slavoj Zizek shows himself through the film as an apologist for Jewish Supremacism and Zionism. (This fact is the only thing that's clear throughout the film.) He makes hash of all ideologies, talking about them as if they're all interchangeable and all equally deceptive, but quotes Communist Sartre and Jewish Walter Benjamin more than once throughout the film without criticism. Ever wonder why? (Answer: Zizek is Communist.)

All wrongdoing is because of ideology, Zizek says. Communism and Capitalism both have their ugly, evil underbellies, while both embrace Beethoven's 9th Symphony. Well, Zizek never takes National Socialism seriously, and he never addresses any legitimate form of Nationalism. This is called a pervert's guide because that's what Slavoj Zizek is in his philosophical vantage. His subjective view of reality is perverted, i.e., distorted. He has to lie. He cannot tell the truth. There is an ideology he cannot transcend or even speak about.

Some guy might think the discussion of how ideology affects their lives from an atheistic viewpoint is a worthwhile one. For those who have never examined ideologies at all, I think this film might instruct, although it's deliberately obscure at points, and never true, finally. You could read the Bible, the New Testament in particular, and find a better perspective. Look up Daniel the Christian on YouTube and his ChristianRemedyInLaw to learn how Christ understood the ideology of Satan.

Some other guy might think this is not a political film. It's a psychological and philosophical film that discusses political ideology. In order to make a criticism of political values, the critic has to have his own set of political values in order to be able to talk about the evil of some political ideology. This is most certainly a political film.

Zizek falsely and lyingly asserts that there is no Big Other (which is more than just rejecting Big Other (as if that were even possible)). Strange that he makes that claim in a political film discussing political ideologies without once referring to George Orwell or his novel "1984" where evil ideologies run rampant. Nor does he discuss Big Brother (also an Orwellian concept).

Is there any difference between Big Other and Big Brother? No. Because there is only one Big Other. You can start with a look at the Israeli global surveillance network: Big Brother in the New World Order. Who do you think is running it?

"Political language is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind."

-- George Orwell
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Brilliant, insightful, witty May 19 2014
By Mckathiki - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
Fascinating and thought provoking analysis. Well worth viewing, especially for those of us whose eyes and minds have opened to global realities and are working hard to shed our own onion layers of ideological indoctrination.
4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
A film is just a film. Or is it? March 25 2014
By Manuel Armenteros - Published on Amazon.com
Format: DVD
Slavoj Zizek's continues his "Pervert's Guide" series, the first one being the Perverts Guide to Cinema back in 2006. Contrary to that film, which is also very interesting and thought provoking, there is no need for some background in psychoanalysis of the Lacanian variety.

Instead of focusing on how films can be a useful tool in understanding how the much discredited psychoanalysis can be, Zizek focuses on an topic that has been dormant for a long time, since the collapse of the USSR, namely the issue of Ideology. By going through obscure films like John Carpenter's "They Live", to use the metaphor of glasses revealing the truth in daily illusion, to talking about the much acclaimed Batman's "The Dark Knight Rises" and the hidden message that can be interpreted as to why in political discourse, authority is de facto needed to control the masses who will become violent and brutal without leaders, according to those who have such authority. Zizek is here to claim that a movie is never really a movie, to different extents all we see and watch in our daily lives, not only movies but media and historical events, all have an underlying Ideological mechanism at work.

While there are certainly some objections that some of these interpretations are trivial or seek to stretch a movie too much out of its context, it is hard to deny having seen this movie, that given a different angle a wild new world of possibilities is opened up that can serve to enrich our understanding of things we often take for granted, albeit with some nagging suspicions that something is not right. What is this something which is not correct? There is no simple answer and each individual can and may well bring their own understanding of all that is popular and of mass consumption.

The one instance in which Zizek does make an explicit Lacanian term (which, to my mind is not bad, Zizek is a Lacanian, and even if you think Lacan was a charlatan, this is Zizek's Lacan, so take it for what it is) is when he mentions the Big Other. This is a difficult concept to explain, but can be understood as a fictitious entity that we postulate into another larger moral agent which we believe is external to us, but nevertheless is actually within us. If you don't understand this concept, watch the movie and maybe it will begin to make sense.

Even if you conclude that much of this is wrong, it is impossible to deny that there is plenty of food for thought contained in this excellent documentary, one which makes you think, and does not preach. Was Jesus an Atheist? Is Beethoven's "Ode to Joy" a celebration of our humanity? Is the Church actually a secretly permissive society? Do prostitutes need to be rescued? Does military vulgarity serve a deeper purpose? Do we really want what we desire? Go ahead and do what the popular carbonated beverage tells you to do in its many commercial: Enjoy!

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