In exploring the concept of the middlebrow, this book recovers films that were widely meaningful to contemporary audiences, yet sometimes overlooked by critics interested in popular and arthouse extremes. It also addresses the question of socially-mobile audiences, who might express their aspirations through film-watching; and traces the cultural consequences of the movement of films across borders and between institutions.
The first study of its kind, the volume comprises 11 original essays that test the purchase of the term ‘middlebrow’ across cultures, including those of Europe, Asia and the Americas, from the 1930s to the present day. Middlebrow Cinema brings into view a popular and aspirational - and thus especially relevant and dynamic - area of film and film culture. Ideal for students and researchers in this area, this book:
Remaps ‘Popular’ and ‘arthouse’ approaches Explores British, Chinese, French, Indian, Mexican, Spanish ‘national’ cinemas alongside Continental, Hollywood, Queer, Transnational cinemas Analyses Biopic, Heritage, Historical Film, Melodrama, Musical, Sex Comedy genres.
Authors Deshpande and Mazaj have developed a method of charting this new world cinema that makes room for divergent perspectives, traditions, and positions, while also revealing their interconnectedness and relationships of meaning. In doing so, they bring together a broad range of issues and examples—theoretical concepts, viewing and production practices, film festivals, large industries such as Nollywood and Bollywood, and smaller and emerging film cultures—into a systemic yet flexible map of world cinema.
The multi-layered approach of this book aims to do justice to the depth, dynamism, and complexity of the phenomenon of world cinema. For students looking to films outside of their immediate context, this book offers a blueprint that will enable them to transform a casual encounter with a film into a systematic inquiry into world cinema.
Aimed at students in their final year of secondary education or beginning their degrees, Doing Film Studies equips the reader with the tools needed in approaching the study of film.
The book emphasizes how film theory has developed as a historically contingent discourse, one that has evolved and changed in conjunction with different social, political, and intellectual factors. To explore this fully, the book is broken down into the following distinct sections:
Theory Before Theory, 1915-1960 French Theory, 1949-1968 Screen Theory, 1969-1996 Post-Theory, 1996-2015
Complete with questions for discussion and a glossary of both key terms and key theorists, Film Theory: The Basics is an invaluable resource for those new to film studies and for anyone else interested in the history and significance of critical thinking in relation to the moving image.