The Hollywood Renaissance: Revisiting American Cinema’s Most Celebrated Era
In December 1967, Time magazine put Bonnie and Clyde on its cover and proudly declared that Hollywood cinema was undergoing a ‘renaissance’. For the next few years, a wide range of formally and thematically challenging films were produced at the very centre of the American film industry, often combining success at the box office with huge critical acclaim, both then and later. This collection brings together acknowledged experts on American cinema to examine thirteen key films from the years 1966 to 1974, starting with Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, a major studio release which was in effect exempted from Hollywood’s Production Code and thus helped to liberate American filmmaking from (self-)censorship. Long-standing taboos to do with sex, violence, race relations, drugs, politics, religion and much else could now be broken, often in conjunction with extensive stylistic experimentation. Whereas most previous scholarship has examined these developments through the prism of auteurism, with its tight focus on film directors and their oeuvres, the contributors to this collection also carefully examine production histories and processes. They pay particular attention to the economic underpinnings and collaborative nature of filmmaking, the influence of European art cinema as well as of exploitation, experimental and underground films, and the connections between cinema and other media. Several chapters show how the innovations of the Hollywood Renaissance relate to further changes in American cinema from the mid-1970s onwards.
Citation:Krämer, P. and Tzioumakis, Y. (eds) (2018) The Hollywood Renaissance: Revisiting American Cinema’s Most Celebrated Era. New York: Bloomsbury Academic.
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