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Les Variations Jarmusch

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Esther Heboyan

Partie III. Variations sur un genre : le film de vampires / Variations on a genre : the vampire movie

Gibsons, vinyl & first editions: Gothic fetishism in Only Lovers Left Alive (Jim Jarmusch, 2013) 1

David Roche

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Jarmusch’s auteurist approach to cinema – writing his screenplays, often working with the same crew (casting director Ellen Lewis, editor Jay Rabinowitz, cinematographer Frederick Elmes) and even composing or adapting2 (with the band SQÜRL) some of the music for his latest film – could lead us to forget that, like most independent American filmmakers, he also has an ongoing interest in genre films. Down by Law (1986), Dead Man (1995), Ghost Dog (1999), Broken Flowers (2005) and The Limits of Control (2009) are, in many respects, variations on the prison movie3, the Western4, the samurai and ghetto movie5, the road movie, romantic comedy and detective story6, and the assassin movie. As a vampire movie relying on Gothic motifs, Only Lovers Left Alive (2013) is probably the closest thing to a genre film Jarmusch has made since Dead Man. The filmmaker admitted in an interview to being indebted to Anne Rice’s reimagining of vampires as “complex characters and not just undead monster figu...

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