Death at Work

Are mirrors the essence of cinema? Nicolas Roeg seemed to think so, and this eloquent and elegant video essay for Voor De Film makes that same case, starting from a mirror scene in Roeg’s The Man Who Fell to Earth. Essayists Maarten Slagboom and Menno Kooistra offer a wealth of examples from a varied selection of films, proposing a taxonomy of sorts (with four categories) of all possible uses of mirrors in the movies.


But perhaps the strongest parts of this essay are the personal asides. The private trigger that sent off the makers on this journey through a cinematic hall of mirrors was the death of David Bowie, and that in turn led to the rediscovery of the meaningful omnipresence of mirrors in Bowie’s career.