The Columbia Companion to American History on Film

Author: Peter C. Rollins
Publisher: Columbia University Press
ISBN: 0231508395
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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American history has always been an irresistible source of inspiration for filmmakers, and today, for good or ill, most Americans'sense of the past likely comes more from Hollywood than from the works of historians. In important films such as The Birth of a Nation (1915), Roots (1977), Apocalypse Now (1979), and Saving Private Ryan (1998), how much is entertainment and how much is rooted in historical fact? In The Columbia Companion to American History on Film, more than seventy scholars consider the gap between history and Hollywood. They examine how filmmakers have presented and interpreted the most important events, topics, eras, and figures in the American past, often comparing the film versions of events with the interpretations of the best historians who have explored the topic. Divided into eight broad categories—Eras; Wars and Other Major Events; Notable People; Groups; Institutions and Movements; Places; Themes and Topics; and Myths and Heroes—the volume features extensive cross-references, a filmography (of discussed and relevant films), notes, and a bibliography of selected historical works on each subject. The Columbia Companion to American History on Film is also an important resource for teachers, with extensive information for research or for course development appropriate for both high school and college students. Though each essay reflects the unique body of film and print works covering the subject at hand, every essay addresses several fundamental questions: What are the key films on this topic? What sources did the filmmaker use, and how did the film deviate (or remain true to) its sources? How have film interpretations of a particular historical topic changed, and what sorts of factors—technological, social, political, historiographical—have affected their evolution? Have filmmakers altered the historical record with a view to enhancing drama or to enhance the "truth" of their putative message?

Why We Fought

Author: Peter Rollins
Publisher: University Press of Kentucky
ISBN: 0813172977
Format: PDF, Kindle
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Film moves audiences like no other medium; both documentaries and feature films are especially remarkable for their ability to influence viewers. Best-selling author James Brady remarked that he joined the Marines to fight in Korea after seeing a John Wayne film, demonstrating how a motion picture can change the course of a human life—in this case, launching the career of a major historian and novelist. In Why We Fought: America’s Wars in Film and History, editors Peter C. Rollins and John E. O’Connor explore the complexities of war films, describing the ways in which such productions interpret history and illuminate American values, politics, and culture. This comprehensive volume covers representations of war in film from the American Revolution in the 18th century to today’s global War on Terror. The contributors examine iconic battle films such as The Big Parade (1925), All Quiet on the Western Front (1930), From Here to Eternity (1953), and Platoon (1986), considering them as historical artifacts. The authors explain how film shapes our cultural understanding of military conflicts, analyzing how war is depicted on television programs, through news media outlets, and in fictional and factual texts. With several essays examining the events of September 11, 2001, and their aftermath, the book has a timely relevance concerning the country’s current military conflicts. Jeff Chown examines controversial documentary films about the Iraq War, while Stacy Takacs considers Jessica Lynch and American gender issues in a post-9/11 world, and James Kendrick explores the political messages and aesthetic implications of United 93. From filmmakers who reshaped our understanding of the history of the Alamo, to Ken Burns’s popular series on the Civil War, to the uses of film and media in understanding the Vietnam conflict, Why We Fought offers a balanced outlook— one of the book’s editors was a combat officer in the United States Marines, the other an antiwar activist—on the conflicts that have become touchstones of American history. As Air Force veteran and film scholar Robert Fyne notes in the foreword, American war films mirror a nation’s past and offer tangible evidence of the ways millions of Americans have become devoted, as was General MacArthur, to “Duty, honor, and country.” Why We Fought chronicles how, for more than half a century, war films have shaped our nation’s consciousness.

Spectacle in Classical Cinemas

Author: Tom Brown
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317527054
Format: PDF
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Spectacle is not often considered to be a significant part of the style of ‘classical’ cinema. Indeed, some of the most influential accounts of cinematic classicism define it virtually by the supposed absence of spectacle. Spectacle in ‘Classical’ Cinemas: Musicality and Historicity in the 1930s brings a fresh perspective on the role of the spectacular in classical sound cinema by focusing on one decade of cinema (the 1930s), in two ‘modes’ of filmmaking (musical and historical films), and in two national cinemas (the US and France). This not only brings to light the special rhetorical and affective possibilities offered by spectacular images but refines our understanding of what ‘classical’ cinema is and was.

Library Journal

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ISBN:
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Includes, beginning Sept. 15, 1954 (and on the 15th of each month, Sept.-May) a special section: School library journal, ISSN 0000-0035, (called Junior libraries, 1954-May 1961). Also issued separately.

The Landscape of Hollywood Westerns

Author: Deborah A. Carmichael
Publisher:
ISBN: 9780874808667
Format: PDF, ePub
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The essays in this volume scrutinize the special place of nature and landscape in films—including silent, documentary, and feature length film—that are specifically American and Western.