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Cinema Journal (2015) - "Why Did You Have to Turn On the Machine?": The Spirals of Time-Travel Romance




This article investigates the closely related mechanisms of cinema, time travel, and desire. Through analysis of films that exemplify the subgenre of time-travel romance, and through philosophical engagement with the work of Freud, Bergson, and Deleuze, the article considers whether time machines (and cinema) spatialize time or "temporalize" space. Is desire a matter of assembling time machines to escape from chronological, spatialized time? The spiral, understood as a figure of time, proves instructive in approaching this question.