The End of Cinema as We Know it: American Film in the Nineties

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Jon Lewis
NYU Press, Dec 1, 2001 - Performing Arts - 385 pages
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Almost half a century ago, Jean-Luc Godard famously remarked, "I await the end of cinema with optimism." Lots of us have been waiting forand wondering aboutthis prophecy ever since. The way films are made and exhibited has changed significantly. Films, some of which are not exactly "films" anymore, can now be projected in a wide variety of wayson screens in revamped high tech theaters, on big, high-resolution TVs, on little screens in minivans and laptops. But with all this new gear, all these new ways of viewing films, are we necessarily getting different, better movies?

The thirty-four brief essays in The End of Cinema as We Know It attend a variety of topics, from film censorship and preservation to the changing structure and status of independent cinemafrom the continued importance of celebrity and stardom to the sudden importance of alternative video. While many of the contributors explore in detail the pictures that captured the attention of the nineties film audience, such as Jurassic Park, Eyes Wide Shut, South Park: Bigger, Longer and Uncut, The Wedding Banquet, The Matrix, Independence Day, Gods and Monsters, The Nutty Professor, and Kids, several essays consider works that fall outside the category of film as it is conventionally definedthe home "movie" of Pamela Anderson and Tommy Lee's honeymoon and the amateur video of the LAPD beating of Rodney King.

Examining key films and filmmakers, the corporate players and industry trends, film styles and audio-visual technologies, the contributors to this volume spell out the end of cinema in terms of irony, cynicism and exhaustion, religious fundamentalism and fanaticism, and the decline of what we once used to call film culture.

Contributors include: Paul Arthur, Wheeler Winston Dixon, Thomas Doherty, Thomas Elsaesser, Krin Gabbard, Henry Giroux, Heather Hendershot, Jan-Christopher Hook, Alexandra Juhasz, Charles Keil, Chuck Klienhans, Jon Lewis, Eric S. Mallin, Laura U. Marks, Kathleen McHugh, Pat Mellencamp, Jerry Mosher, Hamid Naficy, Chon Noriega, Dana Polan, Murray Pomerance, Hillary Radner, Ralph E. Rodriguez, R.L. Rutsky, James Schamus, Christopher Sharrett, David Shumway, Robert Sklar, Murray Smith, Marita Sturken, Imre Szeman, Frank P. Tomasulo, Maureen Turim, Justin Wyatt, and Elizabeth Young.


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An Introduction to a Book on Nineties American Film
The Blockbuster Everything Connectsbut Not Everything Goes
Those Who Disagree Can Kiss Jack Valentis Ass
The Hollywood History Business
The Man Who Wanted to Go Back
American Cinema in the 1990s and Beyond Whose Countrys Filmmaking Is It Anyway?
Marketing Marginalized Cultures The Wedding Banquet Cultural Identitiesand Independent Cinema of the 1990s
Hollywood Redux All about My Mother and Gladiator
Woody Allenthe Artist and the Little Girl
Affliction When Paranoid Male Narratives Fail
The Phallus UnFetished The End of Masculinity As We Know It in Late1990s FeministCinema
Bods and Monsters The Return of the Bride of Frankenstein
Having Their Cake and Eating It Too Fat Acceptance Films and the Production of Meaning
A Rant
The Case of Harmony Korine
Where Hollywood Fears to Tread Autobiography and the Limits of Commercial Cinema

The Zen of MasculinityRituals of Heroism in The Matrix
Ikea Boy Fights Back Fight Club Consumerismand the Political Limits of Nineties Cinema
The Blair Witch ProjectMacbeth and the Indeterminate End
Empire of the Gun Steven Spielbergs Saving Private Ryan and American Chauvinism
Saving Private Ryan Too Late
The Confusions of Warren Beatty
Movie Star Presidents
The Fantasy Image Fixed and Moving
Men with Guns The Story John Sayles Cant Tell
The End of Chicano Cinema
Being Keanu
Smoke til Youre Blue in the Face
Pamela Anderson on the Slippery Slope
King Rodney The Rodney King Video and Textual Analysis
Live Video
End of Story The Collapse of Myth in Postmodern Narrative Film
Waiting for the End of the World Christian Apocalyptic Media at the Turn of the Millennium
The Four Last Things HistoryTechnologyHollywood Apocalypse
Twentyfive Reasons Why Its All Over

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Page 373 - She has published over fifty essays in anthologies and journals on a wide range of theoretical, historical and aesthetic issues in cinema and video, art, cultural studies, feminist and psychoanalytic theory, and comparative literature.

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About the author (2001)

Jon Lewis is Professor of English at Oregon State University where he has taught film and cultural studies since 1983. His books include Whom God Wishes to Destroy . . . Francis Coppola and the New Hollywood, The Road to Romance and Ruin: Teen Films and Youth Culture, and (as editor) The New American Cinema.

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