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The Next Reel • Season 13 • Series: 2023 DGA Awards Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Theatrical Feature Film Nominees • Tár


“You want to dance the masque, you must service the composer. You gotta sublimate yourself, your ego, and, yes, your identity. You must, in fact, stand in front of the public and God and obliterate yourself.”

A Cinematic Masterpiece from Director Todd Field

Director Todd Field may not be a prolific filmmaker, but his small body of work showcases his incredible talent and strong voice. After a 16-year hiatus, Field returns to the director’s chair with Tár, a film that has been praised as a perfect piece of cinema and a masterful character study.

Join us – Pete Wright and Andy Nelson – as we continue the 2023 DGA Awards Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Theatrical Feature Film Nominees series with a conversation about Tár.

Conducting a Symphony of Power and Manipulation

In our discussion of Tár, we dive into the complex themes and character dynamics that make this film so compelling. We explore how the film positions Lydia Tár (Cate Blanchett) as an antagonist against youth perspectives on art versus the artist, and how her own ideology and manipulative behavior inevitably lead to her downfall.

We also delve into the gender dynamics at play in the film, with Tár using her power and position as a woman in a male-dominated field to manipulate and control those around her. Blanchett’s performance is a standout, delivering a believable portrayal of a diabolical character that is rarely seen played by women in film.

Other topics covered in our conversation include:

  • The film’s unorthodox opening credits and how they set the stage for the story
  • The signature scene of Tár’s guest lecture at Juilliard and how it represents the film’s central themes
  • The inevitability of Tár’s behavior and how the film builds a case for her corruption by power
  • The importance of representation and understanding changing perspectives in the arts

Tár is a film that showcases the incredible talent of both its director and lead actress, delivering a powerful character study that explores themes of power, manipulation, and the corrupting influence of artistic genius. It’s a film that is sure to spark discussion and leave a lasting impact on viewers.

We have a great time talking about it, so check it out then tune in. The Next Reel – when the movie ends, our conversation begins!

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When the movie ends, our conversation begins. We love movies. We’ve been talking about them, one movie a week, since 2011. It’s a lot of movies, that’s true, but we’re passionate about origins and performance, directors and actors, themes and genres, and so much more. So join the community and let’s hear about your favorite movies, too.