Sonic Sociabilities and Stranger Relations in Arnaud des Pallières’ Adieu (2004)
Abstract: This article addresses the way noise has been deployed within the sonic practice of French filmmaker Arnaud des Pallières in his film Adieu (2004). According to des Pallières, the politics of his filmmaking resides in the way his films reflect on experiences of which he has no lived experience. With Adieu, des Pallières considers the experience of migration purposefully obliquely. The article examines how this indirect approach is achieved through noise that is harnessed to a political agenda, one that implicates spectators through the film’s own indirect address to listening in spectatorship. Through asynchronicity, the film tunes us to noises that continually arrive from an elsewhere, annoying our sense of place and integrating us within a world of strangers. Through a close reading of this film’s use of migratory noise, feedback and soundscaping, I show how des Pallières’ rigorous and singular approach to noise in Adieu is uniquely placed to open up questions about how we relate to sound and cinema’s address to listening in spectatorship. This consideration offers wider possibilities for understanding how cinema instigates more distant and radical forms of encounter through noise.