aesthetic and spiritual revelation of Greek antiquities and Hellenic culture during visits to the British Museum and the Parthenon; performances with her mother (Bessie Love) and brother Raymond (Tony Vogel) before the cream of London society; and her life-long commitment to build a string of dance schools for underprivileged children, starting in Grünewald, Germany in 1904. By eschewing the staple biopic strategy of tracing the
The volume offers a new method of interpreting screen adaptations of Shakespearean drama, focusing on the significance of cinematic genres in the analysis of films adapted from literary sources. The book’s central argument is rooted in the recognition that film genres may provide the most important context informing a film’s production, critical and popular reception. The novelty of the volume is in its use of a genre-based interpretation as an organising principle for a systematic interpretation of Shakespeare film adaptations. The book also highlights Shakespearean elements in several lesser-known films, hoping to generate new critical attention towards them. The volume is organised into six chapters, discussing films that form broad generic groups. Part I comprises three genres from the classical Hollywood era (western, melodrama and gangster noir), while Part II deals with three contemporary blockbuster genres (teen film, undead horror and the biopic). The analyses underline elements that the films have inherited from Shakespeare, while emphasising how the adapting genre leaves a more important mark on the final product than the textual source. The volume’s interdisciplinary approach means that its findings are rooted in both Shakespeare and media studies, underlining the crucial role genres play in the production and reception of literature as well as in contemporary popular visual culture.
Previous studies of screen performance have tended to fix upon star actors, directors, or programme makers, or they have concentrated upon particular training and acting styles. Moving outside of these confines, this book provides an interdisciplinary account of performance in film and television and examines a much neglected area in people's understanding of how popular genres and performance intersect on screen. The advent of star studies certainly challenged the traditional notion of the director as the single or most important creative force in a film. Genre theory emerged as an academic area in the 1960s and 1970s, partly as a reaction to the auteurism of the period and partly as a way of addressing popular cinematic forms. Television studies have also developed catalogues of genres, some specific to the medium and some that refer to familiar cinematic genres. The book describes certain acting patterns in the classic noirs Maltese Falcon, The Big Sleep, Out of the Past and the neo-noirs Chinatown. British television drama in the 1970s had a special interest in the genre of horror. There is no film genre to which performance is as crucial as it is to the biopic. To explore comedy performance is to acknowledge that there is something that defines a performance as 'comic'. The book also examines drama-documentary, the western, science fiction, comedy performance in 'spoof news' programmes and the television 'sit com' and popular Bollywood films.
There is no film genre to which performance is as crucial as it is to the biopic. The genre’s appeal lies in seeing an actual person who did something interesting in life, known mostly in public, transformed into a character. Private behaviours and actions and public events as they might have been in the person’s time are formed together and interpreted dramatically. At the heart of the biopic is the
The introduction to Part II of this volume has already established that, like the teenpic or the undead horror film, the biopic is not an entirely new phenomenon in cinema history, and yet at the end of the millennium it has made a spectacular return to public awareness. Shakespeare biopics provide an eminent example: while a few films with William Shakespeare as a character had already been made in the first half of the twentieth century, it is only since the 1990s that any biopic proper can be associated with his name. Earlier films which include images of
-realist films. 6 Therefore, this chapter will focus instead on some of the overlaps between this anti-realist tradition and British art cinema. It will do this through an examination of two smaller, but artistically significant traditions in British filmmaking, the composed film and the artist’s biopic, and will assess how these forms have been exploited by two key figures in British art cinema: Russell and Peter Greenaway. First, however, this chapter will briefly examine the influence of Powell and Pressburger on the composed film. Powell and
taken a different path if he had continued with the innovation in style and technique demonstrated in his first film, Oh! What a Lovely War. But this was not a mode that Attenborough wished to pursue, instead his future productions tended to eschew fantasy for the realism he preferred. The biopic has emerged as Attenborough’s preferred genre and filmic Dux_Attenborough.indd 198 15/08/2013 10:25 conclusion 199 form. In many of his own instigations, including Gandhi, Cry Freedom, Chaplin and Grey Owl, Attenborough has employed the biopic in the manner of Lord Reith
Domingos and Caví Borges, 2008]), funk carioca (a local variant of Miami bass) ( Sou feia mas tô na moda [I’m Ugly but Trendy, Denise Garcia, 2005]) and rock ( Titãs, a vida até parece uma festa [Titãs, Life’s Like a Party, Oscar Rodrigues Alves and Branco Mello, 2008]). The documentary biopic has been even more popular, with over forty titles released since 2000. These include accounts of such diverse musicians as samba
in inspiration, the heritage genre tends to place a premium on high production values, often relying on international co-productions and famous stars in order to ensure a large audience. Although spectacle is clearly fundamental to the heritage film, it is always a supposedly authenticated spectacle, legitimised by claims to historical accuracy or cultural sources; hence the number of literary adaptations, biopics of
the ‘porous’ boundary between documentary and drama has produced highly creative treatments of the serious and the social, the historical and the public, the personal and the collective. Styles used can be traced not only to Histories: fourth-phase hybridisation 275 British and American docudramatic traditions but also to Hollywood bio-pic and ‘issue’ film and to boundaries newly made porous (with, for example, the musical – see below). The importing into docudrama of direct witness testimony – as used in news and documentary – has been particularly evident in