The unreliable narrator in feature film Cover Image

Narrator niewiarygodny w filmie fabularnym
The unreliable narrator in feature film

Author(s): Jacek Ostaszewski
Subject(s): Theatre, Dance, Performing Arts
Published by: Instytut Sztuki Polskiej Akademii Nauk
Keywords: film narration

Summary/Abstract: The author presents the function of an unreliable narrator in feature films, in the context of the definition proposed by Wayne C. Booth (in The Rhetoric of Fiction, 1961). Booth considers the constitutive characteristic of the unreliable narrator in literature to be the distance that gradually opens between the author and the narrator. The gradual loss of trust towards the storyteller invites the reader to evaluate his attitude. When the narrator turns out to be completely untrustworthy, the entire effect of the text is transformed. Ostaszewski lists a number of films that feature unreliable narrators, and shows different versions of this type of narration. Irony turns out to be the key element in understanding untrustworthiness in contemporary film. Identifying the unreliable narrator is a means through which one can integrate events present in the film into a coherent and logical construction.

  • Issue Year: 2010
  • Issue No: 71-72
  • Page Range: 60-74
  • Page Count: 15
  • Language: Polish