Cinema and Northern Ireland: Film, Culture and Politics

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British Film Institute, 2006 - History - 262 pages
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John Hill's groundbreaking study is the first book to focus solely on the cinema from and about Northern Ireland. Based on detailed archival research, Hill's comprehensive account traces the history of film production in Northern Ireland from the beginnings of a local film industry in the 1920s and 1930s, when the first Northern Irish 'quota quickies' were made, through the propaganda films of the 1940s and 1950s and on to the cinema of the Troubles.
Hill carefully examines the relationship between films and the political tensions within Northern Ireland, identifying the ways in which films have both reinforced and challenged social divisions. He considers the moral and religious controversies that have surrounded cinema in the North and describes the political censorship of films held to be seditious such asOurselves AloneandThe Plough and the Stars. He assesses the role of filmmaking in Northern Ireland during and after the Second World War and considers how Northern Ireland's relationship with Britain and the rest of Ireland figured in feature films such asOdd Man Outas well as in government propaganda films and informational shorts. He also traces the controversies surrounding the history of government policy in Northern Ireland and assesses the cultural and industrial impact this has had on local film. He then turns his attention to how the cinema has represented the Troubles. Tracing the history of Troubles cinema as it proceeds through the height of the conflict and into the 'peace process', Hill provide a fresh perspective on a variety of films, ranging fromResurrection ManandThe BoxertoDivorcing JackandMad about Mambo. Both original and authoritative,Cinema and Northern Irelandis destined to become the standard work on the subject.

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About the author (2006)

John Hill is Professor and Head of Research in the Department of Media Arts at Royal Holloway, University of London. He is the author and editor of a number of books, including Cinema and Ireland (1987); Border Crossing: Film in Ireland, Britain and Europe (1994); The Oxford Guide to Film Studies (1998); British Cinema in the 1980s (1999) and National Cinema and Beyond (2004).

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