Film in Korea has always been under governmental censorship. This book examines the ways in which Korean film reveals the ideological orientation of the society in which it is created and circulated. It examines the social and political milieu in which the Korean film industry developed from its beginning during the Japanese colonial period to its bifurcation into South and North Korean cinemas. The book presents a critical analysis of the selected films, which were all made between 1960 and 1990. It discusses the cultural identity of contemporary Koreans by analysing five films based on a popular traditional folk tale, Ch'unhyangjŏn. Three of the five films were made in South Korea: Shin Sangok's Song Ch'unhyang, Pak T'ae-wŏn's The Tale of Song Ch'unhyang and Han Sanghun's SongCh'unhyang. The significance of gender and class issues in Ch'unhyangjŏn can be glimpsed through the three variants of the film title. The book then examines the notion of nationhood held by contemporary Koreans from two interrelated perspectives, political and cultural. It explores the films in relation to the conflicting ideological orientations of North and South Korea. In the North Korean films, anti-imperialism constitutes the core of their definition of nationhood. Class is one of the foremost factors in the formation of cultural identities of contemporary Koreans living as a divided nation. The book discusses six films in this context: The Untrodden Path, The Brigade Commander's Former Superior, Bellflower, A Nice Windy Day, Kuro Arirang and Black Republic.
Part II Culture and conflict
According to Edward Said,
‘culture is sort of a theatre where various political and ideological
causes engage one another. Far from being a placid realm of Apollonian
gentility, culture can even be a battleground on which causes expose
themselves to the light of day and contend with one another’ (Said, in
Edwards, 1999 : 249). This quotation from Said shows
While several critical works on Spanish cinema have centred on the cultural, social and industrial significance of stars, there has been relatively little critical scholarship on what stars are paid to do: act. Bringing together a range of scholars that attend carefully to the performances, acting styles, and historical influences of Spanish film, Performance and Spanish Film is the first book to place the process of Spanish acting centre stage. Comprising fifteen original essays, the book casts light on the manifold meanings, methods and influences of Spanish screen performance, from the silent era to the present day. It situates the development of Spanish screen acting in both its national and global contexts, tracing acting techniques that are largely indigenous to Spain, as well as unpicking the ways in which Spanish performance has frequently been shaped by international influences and forces. As the volume ultimately demonstrates, acting can serve as a powerful site of meaning through which broader questions around Spanish film practices, culture and society can be explored.
British art cinema: Creativity, experimentation and innovation brings together a selection of essays from both new and established scholars that engage with how far artistic creativity, entertainment and commerce have informed a conceptual British ‘arthouse’ cinema. The chapters show that rather than always sitting in the shadow of its European counterparts, for example, British cinema has often produced films and film-makers that explore intellectual ideas, and embrace experiment and innovation. The book examines the complex nature of state-funded and independent British filmmaking, the relationship between the modernist movement and British cinema, and the relationship between British cinema, Hollywood and US popular culture. The chapters cover the history of British cinema from the silent period to the 2010s. Film-makers explored in detail include Alfred Hitchcock, Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger, Derek Jarman, Ken Russell, Horace Ové, Joseph Losey, John Krish, Humphrey Jennings, Nicolas Roeg, and lesser-known artists such as Enrico Cocozza and Sarah Turner. There are new essays on the British New Wave, the 1980s, poetic realism and social realism, the producer Don Boyd, the Black Audio Film Collective, films about Shakespeare, and the work of the Arts Council in the aftermath of World War Two.
This account of the life and films of the Spanish-Basque filmmaker Julio Medem is the first book in English on the internationally renowned writer-director of Vacas, La ardilla roja (Red Squirrel), Tierra, Los amantes del círculo polar (Lovers of the Arctic Circle), Lucía y el sexo (Sex and Lucía), La pelota vasca: la piel contra la piedra (Basque Ball) and Caótica Ana (Chaotic Ana). Initial chapters explore Medem's childhood, adolescence and education, and examine his earliest short films and critical writings against a background of a dramatically changing Spain. Later chapters provide accounts of the genesis, production and release of Medem's challenging and sensual films, which feed into analyses of their meanings, both political and personal, in which the author draws on traditions and innovations in Basque art, Spanish cinema and European philosophy to create a portrait of the director and his work.
Screen documentary has experienced a marked rise in visibility and popularity in recent years. What are the reasons for the so-called ‘boom’ in documentaries at the cinema? How has television documentary met the challenge of new formats? And how do audiences engage with documentaries on screen? Watching the world extends the reach of documentary studies by investigating recent instances of screen documentary and the uses made of them by audiences. This book focuses on the interfaces between textual mechanisms, promotional tactics and audiences' viewing strategies. Key topics of inquiry are: film and televisual form, truth claims and issues of trust, the pleasures, politics and ethics of documentary. Case studies include Capturing the Friedmans, Etre et Avoir, Paradise Lost, Touching the Void and wildlife documentaries on television.
This book is a collection of essays that offers a new lens through which to examine Spain's cinematic production following the decades of isolation imposed by the Franco regime. The films analysed span a period of some 40 years that have been crucial in the development of Spain, Spanish democracy and Spanish cinema. The book offers a new lens to examine Spain's cinematic production following the decades of isolation imposed by the Franco regime. The figure of the auteur jostles for attention alongside other features of film, ranging from genre, intertexuality and ethics, to filmic language and aesthetics. At the heart of this project lies an examination of the ways in which established auteurs and younger generations of filmmakers have harnessed cinematic language towards a commentary on the nation-state and the politics of historical and cultural memory. The films discussed in the book encompass different genres, both popular and more select arthouse fare, and are made in different languages: English, Basque, Castilian, Catalan, and French. Regarded universally as a classic of Spanish arthouse cinema, El espíritu de la colmena/The Spirit of the Beehive has attracted a wealth of critical attention which has focused on political, historical, psychological and formal aspects of Víctor Erice's co-authored film-text. Luis Bunuel's Cet obscur objet du désir/That Obscure Object of Desire, Catalan filmmaker Ventura Pons' Ocana. Retrat Intermitent/Ocana. An Intermittent Portrait, Francisco Franco's El Dorado, Víctor Erice's El sol del membrillo/The Quince Tree Sun, and Julio Medem's Vacas/Cows are some films that are discussed.
Whose culture? Fanzines,
politics and agency
The impetus for starting a (punk) fanzine was often clear enough. Writing in
the first issue of Sniffin’ Glue (1976), Mark Perry bemoaned the weekly music
press’s failure to understand ‘this thing called “punk rock”’. ‘The weeklys [sic]
are so far away from the kids that they can’t possibly say anything of importance’,
he complained: ‘why don’t they stick to Queen and all that trash that drive
around in expensive cars’.1 For Tony Drayton, communicating from the edge
of Glasgow in November 1976, Ripped
Negotiating acceptable politics in the Dutch fanzine
Punks against censorship:
politics in the Dutch
Punk took root in The Netherlands in 1977, with scores of new bands forming
through 1978–80.1 As elsewhere, punk’s mix of spectacular imagery, nihilism
and/or radical politics, shock value and a do-it-yourself approach appealed
to young people.
Also in the late 1970s, the port city of Rotterdam was undergoing a process
of deindustrialisation and automation. It was still being rebuilt, both literally
and figuratively, following near-annihilation during the Second
This book explores the ways in which the unashamedly disturbing conventions of international horror cinema allow audiences to engage with the traumatic legacy of the recent past in a manner that has serious implications for the ways in which we conceive of ourselves both as gendered individuals and as members of a particular nation-state. Exploring a wide range of stylistically distinctive and generically diverse film texts, its analysis ranges from the body horror of the American 1970s to the avant-garde proclivities of German Reunification horror, from the vengeful supernaturalism of recent Japanese chillers and their American remakes to the post-Thatcherite masculinity horror of the UK and the resurgence of hillbilly horror in the period following 9/11 USA. In each case, it is argued that horror cinema forces us to look again at the wounds inflicted on individuals, families, communities and nations by traumatic events such as genocide and war, terrorist outrage and seismic political change, wounds that are all too often concealed beneath ideologically expedient discourses of national cohesion. Thus proffering a radical critique of the nation-state and the ideologies of identity it promulgates, horror cinema is seen to offer us a disturbing, yet perversely life affirming, means of working through the traumatic legacy of recent times.