The original title for this issue, “Peripheries,” was too narrow because it hinted at normative hierarchy. Does not that word, after all, signify a center from which the periphery is, by its very essence, excluded? “Horizons,” on the other hand, signals an expansion of margins, raising of eyes, setting of new objectives for which Imaginaries aims and which each film review in this issue encourages. Scott Gunther’s contextualization of Jacqueline Audry’s mid-twentieth-century lesbian drama, Olivia, explains how this remarkably frank and sympathetic film could come into existence. Marianne Golding rejects misanthropic director Bruno Dumont’s claim that that he is interested only in the peculiarities of human nature to make visible the bitter class critique that informs his supposedly apolitical Ma Loute. Will Higbee’s review of Les Misérables reflects on how director Ladj Ly reconceives the banlieue film to highlight the shared costs of a social inequality sustained by violence and hidden labor. In short, the films reviewed here do not just demand that we look beyond the sexually, socially, and geographically privileged centers of past and present: they insist that we reconsider how we understand the wider world that comes into view.
A Lesbian Oasis? Jacqueline Audry’s Olivia, by Scott Gunther, Wellesley College
‘Dinner’s ready!’: Consumer society or Consumption of ‘High’ Society in Bruno Dumont’s Ma Loute, by Marianne Golding, Southern Oregon University
“Que de mauvais cultivateurs”: Ladj Ly’s Les Misérables (2019), by Will Higbee, University of Exeter