The Mark of Heaven: Douglas Sirk’s Influence on Todd Haynes

far from heaven

The ‘50s are alive with subtext.

The melodramas of Douglas Sirk were stylized simply by existing. The director’s focus on small, domestic issues with housewives as the leads and emotions as the action made his movies contemporarily shunned. Only later were they critically embraced by writers and filmmakers alike, including Todd Haynes.

Hanyes’ most direct homage to the director’s filmography is his film Far From Heaven, which updates and alters Sirk’s All That Heaven Allows. The films explore the underlying instability of their conservative decade’s setting, using a slew of cinematic techniques and thematic throughlines.

Nicolas Longinatti’s juxtaposition in this video essay make these influences undeniable and parseable in easy filmmaking elements. The opening sequences alone are so artistically done that renown recycler Quentin Tarantino could learn from them.

Jacob Oller writes everywhere (Vanity Fair, The Guardian, Playboy, FSR, Paste, etc.) about everything that matters (film, TV, video games, memes, life).