This project is an effort to establish a paradigm for reading and tracing transcendence in film art and film propaganda. It addresses the intersection of aesthetic and spiritual planes which is supported by a long and complex tradition of art within religious worship. The study selects a single film as a microcosm of larger issues of cinematic representation and spirituality, in particular the theology of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons). It makes a formalistic comparison of structural and and stylistic elements between a Mormon long-form narrative, Legacy (1994) with the classic Hollywood narrative on the one hand and Paul Schrader's transcendental style on the other. The goal of the study is to clarify the relationship beteween film and spirituality, especially transcendence. In particular, its aim is to develop a model which may be useful for assessing and producing “Mormon film,” institutionally as well as otherwise.
College and Department
Fine Arts and Communications; Theatre and Media Arts
BYU ScholarsArchive Citation
Lefler, Thomas J., "In Search of a Transcendental Film Style: The Cinematic Art Form and the Mormon Motion Picture" (1996). All Theses and Dissertations. 4873.
Motion pictures, Religious aspects, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Religious films, History, criticism, Transcendentalism, Aesthetics