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2017 | 76 | 190-196
Article title

The symbolism of architecture in the "Cube" motion picture by Vincenzo Natali

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There is no other area of human interest in which immaterial ideas, feelings and storytelling problems meet material world as closely as in the area of set - design. This is where philosophical questions and religious references suddenly start to 'take shape'. In my article I will analyse this process and show how many different contexts can be taken into consideration even if we choose as simple and minimalistic architecture as the one from the famous science – fiction movie Cube, directed by Vincenzo Natali. On a few pages we will discuss interfaith symbolism of the form of square with the focus on four main religious systems - Christianity, Islam, Hinduism and Buddhism. Surprisingly all of these have linked the square with very similar meanings. We will analyse teleological concepts of Aristotle (particularly the 'final cause' theory), which are defined in one of his most famous works, the 'metaphysics'. The most important aspect of this thesis ('purposefulness' as an obligatory attribute of existence) can be easily connected with the plot of the movie, where characters are compliant with the mathematical system in which they appeared. In the conclusion we will try to understand how symbolic meanings can influence our understanding of the final message of the movie and at the very ending we will refer to the etymology of the word 'cosmos'. The chapter will hopefully prove that Cube can offer careful viewers much more than a large amount of suspense or thrill and can be read as a large metaphor. However, to find an exit from the labyrinth of interpretations we will have to – paraphrasing the words of Quentin, one of the main characters – find a place from which we can see 'the big picture'.
Physical description
  • Faculty of Civil Engineering, Architecture and Environmental Engineering, Lodz University of Technology, 6 Al. Politechniki, 90-924, Lodz, Poland
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