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What are stories for? What do they mean?

‘The Subtext’ is a web project by Adrian Graham. It explores the relationship between stories, identity, and values.

Books / Films / Storytelling

‘Killing Commendatore’

Writers use words to create ideas and pictures. These experiences live in the mind of each reader. Although ...

The Christmas Story

The original Christmas story is the birth of Jesus Christ in Nazareth. It is, literally, the story of ...

‘Hereditary’

In Hereditary (2018) a family disintegrates under pressure from external forces. It’s a force they’re unprepared for, unab...

‘Texasville’

Texasville (1990) is the sequel to The Last Picture Show (1971). Thirty years later, Duane, a handsome young oil worker, ...

‘Lost’

The television series Lost aired from 2004 to 2010. It helped change the way TV series are conceptualised, switching from ...

The Place is Alive

At first the Island in the TV series Lost appears to be just another tropical island in the ...

The ‘Other’

In storytelling the ‘I’, ‘me’ (plus the reader, or audience) usually empathises with ‘we’ and ‘us’ against ‘them’. Who are ‘they’? They...

‘Get Out’

In the 2017 film Get Out Rose (who is white) invites Chris (her black boyfriend) to visit her parents ...

‘Blade Runner 2049’

Continuing the story of 1984’s original Blade Runner, Blade Runner 2049 sees officer ‘K’ — a new model of obedient ‘replicant’...

‘Altered Carbon’

The Neo-Noir science fiction thriller Altered Carbon (Season 1, 2018) weaves a story about memory and identity. In this future ...

‘Rosemary’s Baby’

Rosemary’s Baby (1968) is an odd film. Having just watched the Seventies classic, Straw Dogs, I was struck by...

‘Straw Dogs’

David Sumner, the main character in Straw Dogs (1971), comes across as a kind of Benjamin Braddock from The G...

‘Last Year in Marienbad’

The film opens with a point of view camera sequence revealing a sumptuous Baroque hotel interior, filmed in ...

Snow

The world appears ordinary, and then the snow falls. Like a mysteriously wrapped Christo sculpture, everything becomes new ...

The End

It starts with the end. At least that’s how you know you have an exceptional story — think of a...

The Beginning

Stories have a beginning, a middle and an end. They usually open at the start of this sequence ...

‘McCullin’

Directed by David Morris and Jacqui Morris, the 2012 documentary McCullin provides an insightful journey through Don McCullin’s wa...