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Screening the Hollywood Rebels in 1950s Britain explores the relationship between classic American films about juvenile delinquency and British popular youth culture in the mid-twentieth century. The book examines the censorship, publicity and fandom surrounding such Hollywood films as The Wild One, Blackboard Jungle, Rebel Without a Cause, Rock Around the Clock and Jailhouse Rock alongside such British films as The Blue Lamp, Spare the Rod and Serious Charge. Intersecting with star studies and social and cultural history, this is the first book to re-vision the stardom surrounding three extraordinarily influential Hollywood stars: Marlon Brando, James Dean and Elvis Presley. By looking specifically at the meanings of these American stars to British fans, this analysis provides a logical and sustained narrative that explains how and why these Hollywood images fed into, and disrupted, British cultural life. Screening the Hollywood Rebels in 1950s Britain is based upon a wide range of sources including censorship records, both mainstream and trade newspapers and periodicals, archival accounts and memoirs, as well as the films themselves. The book is a timely intervention of film culture and focuses on key questions about screen violence and censorship, masculinity and transnational stardom, method acting and performance, Americanisation and popular post-war British culture. The book is essential reading for researchers, academics and students of film and social and cultural history, alongside general readers interested in the links between the media and popular youth culture in the 1950s.

John Gibbs

-­en-­scène criticism; at the same time, the material in this chapter embodies a number of approaches which were to undermine the emergent interest in the interpretation of film style. Melodrama criticism is a crucial focus for shifts in film criticism and theory, and for this history. Tales of sound and fury ‘Tales of Sound and Fury’ is a wide reaching essay, partly concerned with the history of melodrama as a form – ‘indicat[ing] the development of what one might call the melodramatic imagination’, in Elsaesser’s words – and partly with the stylistic features of the 1950s Hollywood

in The life of mise-en-scène
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Steven Peacock

’s reading of the colour as expressing uneasiness and entrapment (he proposes yellow as the colour of fear). The effect of the colour relies on the film’s collisions of credibility and artifice. In writing about an example of 1950s Hollywood melodrama – Bigger than Life (Nicholas Ray, 1956) – V. F. Perkins notes a comparable occurrence: This [film] has a depressed middle-class setting. Its hero, a teacher

in Colour
Open Access (free)
Janet Wolff

connections between travel and writing, exile and the sense of self. At the time, I very much identified with others who had spoken about the liberating effect of distance from home, and the possibilities for a different, more ‘authentic’, self to emerge at a physical remove from the place of its suppression. In my case the fantasy of ‘America’ played the role of the desired other place, specifically the America of the 1950s (Hollywood and especially rock ’n’ roll). Others have attached themselves to different fantasy places (the places were real, of course – the fantasy

in Austerity baby
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‘What’s she like?’
Felicity Chaplin

screen. For instance, the device of the showgirl allows the two looks to be unified technically without any apparent break in the diegesis. A woman performs within the narrative, the gaze of the spectator and that of the male characters in the film are neatly combined without breaking narrative verisimilitude (19). While it can certainly be argued that Parisienne films, particularly those of 1950s Hollywood, conform to this notion of what Mulvey calls “neatly combined spectacle and narrative” (19), there are certain traits of the Parisienne type which in fact work

in La Parisienne in cinema
Iconoclasm and film genre in The Passion of the Christ and Hail, Caesar!
Martin Stollery

). However, as Christopher Ames points out, any discussion of such films necessarily ‘cuts across genres by considering films about Hollywood that might [also] be classified as musicals, film noir, melodramas, comedies, and even action-adventure films’ ( 1997 : 17). Hail, Caesar! is a film about 1950s Hollywood that represents the production of, and extracts from, musicals, a society drama, a Western and a Roman/Christian epic. The Roman/Christian epic is privileged within this ensemble because it is also called Hail, Caesar! (with the added subtitle, like Ben

in The Bible onscreen in the new millennium
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Carrie Tarr

setting, focalised through a woman’s point of view. In her use of the film within the film, Kurys challenges male domination of the genre, not so much reworking self-reflexive auteur films such as Godard’s Le Mépris (1963) and Truffaut’s La Nuit américaine (1973) (though the film’s ambivalent ending does suggest a mise en abîme of the filmmaking process) as evoking 1950s Hollywood melodramas about

in Diane Kurys
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Phil Powrie

, in her view, it is ‘completely constructed out of prefabricated images … with images coming from directors as far apart as Huston, Cassavetes, Bergman and Malle’(Hayward 1993: 233). 13 Here is an example among many, taken from a piece by Bonitzer from a Cahiers special issue on auteur cinema. Bonitzer implies that 1980s cinema is less complex than, say, 1950s

in Jean-Jacques Beineix
Kate Ince

Catherine Deneuve, Danielle Darrieux, Emmanuelle Béart, Fanny Ardant, Isabelle Huppert, Virginie Ledoyen, Ludivine Sagnier, and Firmine Richard, 8 Femmes pays homage to and indulges its stars, offering them each a musical number in the form of a French pop single from a past decade, and decking them out in gorgeous costumes that take their inspiration from 1950s Hollywood. Ozon says of the film that ‘the dress of Fanny Ardant

in Five directors
‘A tale of two cads’
Andrew Roberts

from Les Girls (George Cukor 1957), where his ‘droll’ supporting role of Sir Gerald Wren was praised by Bosley Crowther of the New York Times ( 1957 ). Had the actor been twenty years older it is wholly plausible to envisage him in roles once essayed by David Niven or even George Sanders; the idea of the Phillips tones as applied to Jack Faversham in Rebecca (Alfred Hitchcock 1940) remains an intriguing one. But in the late 1950s, Hollywood’s ‘British colony’ had already dissipated and in the 1960s it was Terry-Thomas, a more identifiable ‘type’, who filmed on

in Idols of the Odeons