European Cinema: Face to Face with Hollywood

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Amsterdam University Press, 2005 - Performing Arts - 563 pages
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Has European cinema, in the age of globalization, lost contact not only with
the world at large, but with its own audiences? Between the thriving
festival circuit and the obligatory late-night television slot, is there
still a public or a public sphere for European films? Can the cinema be the
appropriate medium for a multicultural Europe and its migrating multitudes?
Is there a division of representational labor, with Hollywood providing
stars and spectacle, the Asian countries exotic color and choreographed
action, and Europe a sense of history, place and memory?
This collection of essays by an acclaimed film scholar examines how
independent filmmaking in Europe has been reinventing itself since the 1990s,
faced by renewed competition from Hollywood and the challenges posed to
national cinemas by the fall of the Wall in 1989. Elsaesser reassesses the
debates and presents a broader framework for understanding the
forces at work since the 1960s. These include the interface of "world
cinema" and the rise of Asian cinemas, the importance of the international
film festival circuit, the role of television, and the changing
aesthetics of auteur cinema. New audiences have different allegiances, and
new technologies enable networks to reshape identities, but European cinema
still has an important function in setting critical and creative agendas,
even as its economic and institutional bases are in transition.
 

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Contents

Introduction European Cinema Conditions of Impossibility?
13
National Cinema ReDefinitions and New Directions
33
Auteurs and Art Cinemas Modernism and SelfReference Installation Art and Autobiography
131
EuropeHollywoodEurope
231
Central Europe Looking West
319
Europe Haunted by History and Empire
371
BorderCrossings Filmmaking without a Passport
431
Conclusion
483
European Cinema A Brief Bibliography
515
List of Sources and Places of First Publication
531
Index of Names
535
Index of Film Titles Subjects
549
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About the author (2005)

Thomas Elsaesser is professor of film and television studies in the Department of Art and Culture at the University of Amsterdam. He is the author or editor of many books, including The Last Great American Picture Show: New Hollywood Cinema in the 1970s, also published by Amsterdam University Press.