This blog was created due to the often asked question of what I have seen recently, as an illuminator to my often baffling likes and dislikes and the many years of colleagues and friends politely pushing me to write on a regular basis and publish my writing in some way or form.

One of the main approaches to film for me is that there is no absolute line that divides high or low art, hence the title, and that what many consider disreputable cinema (say, a low budget horror film), can be more valid than that of what is considered reputable (i.e.: a moderate to big budget film based on a literary, political or historical source.) Film is probably the most subversive art form and what may upon a surface viewing appear as fluff or trash can be simmering with form, style and subtext underneath. Film is able to transcend its source limitations; such as genre which can be limiting in other art forms, transforming pulp material into sublime work. The other key factor for me in evaluating a film is style; no matter how high or low the subject matter may be if a film is imbued with an attention to style and form, I believe it deserves serious attention and consideration. Using these criteria, a Hollywood film can be just as great as a European art film.

So within this blog don’t be surprised to see me tip some sacred cows and elevate junk food into a 5 star meal. I hope that this site can be persuasive in showing how film can be a serious art form regardless of genre, or at least, give Jack Angstreich a good chuckle in the attempt.

Michael Worrall majored in film history and theory at the State University of New York at Purchase, studying under Tom Gunning and Scott Bukatman. He now resides in San Francisco where he has programmed for film repertory theaters and edited the feature film “Fanci’s Persuasion”. In 2006 he authored a critical overview of the films of Richard Fleischer for The Film Journal ( thefilmjournal.com ) and is currently working on two video essays.


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