Beating words to life: Subtitles, assemblage(s)capes, expression

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Ostensibly, subtitles in films serve as linguistic approximations of meaning. Expectedly then, much of the debate surrounding subtitling has been concerned with representational accuracy, fidelity and authenticity. In this article I argue that by encountering subtitles as affective bodily expressions, as opposed to approximate representations of pre-existent meanings or intentions, filmic experiences may be(come) transformed and differently transformational. As a result, meaning and accuracy in subtitles as superimposed signifiers or static representations become secondary to subtitles as spatially affective- and expressive-movements intimately part of filmic scapes. The creative use of subtitling in Bekmambetov's Russian language film Night Watch (Nochnoy dozor; 2006 [2004]) is discussed.

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