The Outsider Within: Béla Tarr and Hungarian National Cinema

Lilla Tőke


Béla Tarr is probably the most paradoxical figure in contemporary Hungarian cinema. His artistic trajectory shows a movement from documentary style realism (Family Nest, 1979) towards more modernist cinematic practices (Satan’s Tango, 1994, Werckmeister Harmonies, 2000, and The Man from London, 2007). A major celebrity in the global film culture that prides itself in being transnational, international, and in crossing linguistic and ethnic boundaries, Tarr has consistently found himself on the fringes of the Hungarian cultural and political establishment. In this study Tőke considers Tarr’s films and public persona as catalysts in the debates about what constitutes “Hungarian cinema” in a globalizing world from the 1970s until today.


Béla Tarr, national cinema, Hungarian cinema, minor cinema, film politics

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Copyright (c) 2016 Lilla Tőke

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This journal is published by Pitt Open Library Publishing.
ISSN 2471-965X (online)