Atom Egoyan's The Adjuster (Canadian Cinema, Volume 3) by Tom McSorley

By Tom McSorley

Certainly one of Canada's pre-eminent auteur filmmakers, Atom Egoyan has been celebrated across the world, incomes a number of awards from the celebrated Cannes and Toronto movie fairs and an Academy Award nomination. one in all his so much entire and debatable early works, The Adjuster, is a depressing drama concerning the complicated and severe courting among an coverage adjuster and his clients.
In this available research, Tom McSorley lines the genesis, construction, and reception of Egoyan's fourth characteristic movie, from its Cannes movie pageant most desirable to its North American advertisement liberate. The ebook locates The Adjuster within the better context of Canadian cinema history's bizarre and sometimes stricken evolution, and gives a provocative interpretation of the film's detailed research of the malaise of materialism in North American tradition. Richly illustrated and that includes new interview fabric with Egoyan himself, this examine within the Canadian Cinema sequence bargains an insightful evaluate of 1 of Atom Egoyan's so much looking out, unsettling movies.

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Additional info for Atom Egoyan's The Adjuster (Canadian Cinema, Volume 3)

Sample text

The whole delineation of personality and the conduct of personality through the society become very precarious. ’12 Consciously or not, then, Egoyan’s characters are involved in gestures of pretence. Some are themselves screen actors; others perform ‘in character’ telephone sex and escort services; others, in the case of Peter Foster, pretend they are long lost sons. With varying degrees of intensity, they are committed to pretence as a mode of being. This confusion of the real and the imaginary, the conflation of professional codes of conduct (and in Noah’s case, in the act of utterance itself) with one’s ‘natural patterns of behavior’ and ‘true intentions,’ is the infrastructure of the profound alienation experienced by the characters in The Adjuster.

The work of this period is, in retrospect, surprisingly consistent in its aesthetic daring, its experimentation, and its unconcealed Canadianness. The accelerated, by Canadian standards, evolution of these filmmakers’ careers was also bolstered by the establishment of the Ontario Film Development Corporation (OFDC) in 1985. Modelled to a degree on the CFDC (by now named Telefilm Canada), this provincial funding body provided additional production funds for filmmakers based in Ontario. Another source of money for independent productions in Ontario, the arrival of the OFDC had a catalytic effect on film production in Canada’s most populous province, and it was an indispensable asset in the development and success of Egoyan’s generation of filmmakers.

Desolation. Disconnection. Egoyan’s work searches for the sources of alienation, tries to locate them, to account for them in the cultural and social contexts that produce and perpetuate them. It asks: how does this happen? In Egoyan’s films, identities appear mutable, occasionally ephemeral, and always mysterious. In The Adjuster, as in the trio of films that preceded it, the characters appear not to be living but rather ‘performing’ their lives, as though this performance will somehow connect them to an authentic life.

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