On the History of Film Style

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Harvard University Press, 1997 - Performing Arts - 322 pages

The study of cinematic style has profoundly shaped our attitude toward movies. Style assigns films to a tradition, distinguishes a classic, and signals the arrival of a pathbreaking innovation. David Bordwell now shows how film scholars have attempted to explain stylistic continuity and change across the history of cinema.

Bordwell scrutinizes the theories of style launched by Andr Bazin, No l Burch, and other film historians. In the process he celebrates a century of cinema, integrating discussions of film classics such as The Birth of a Nation and Citizen Kane with analyses of more current box-office successes such as Jaws and The Hunt for Red October. Examining the contributions of both noted and neglected directors, he considers the earliest filmmaking, the accomplishments of the silent era, the development of Hollywood, and the strides taken by European and Asian cinema in recent years.

On the History of Film Style proposes that stylistic developments often arise from filmmakers' search for engaging and efficient solutions to production problems. Bordwell traces this activity across history through a detailed discussion of cinematic staging. Illustrated with more than 400 frame enlargements, this wide-ranging study provides a new lens for viewing cinema.

 

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On the history of film style

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

Here, Bordwell (The Cinema of Eisenstein, LJ 10/15/93) refutes condemnations that the study of film style is "empiricist," "formalist," or prey to the fantasy of a "grand narrative." He explains how ... Read full review

On the history of film style

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

Here, Bordwell (The Cinema of Eisenstein, LJ 10/15/93) refutes condemnations that the study of film style is "empiricist," "formalist," or prey to the fantasy of a "grand narrative." He explains how ... Read full review

Contents

The Significance of Stylistic History
1
André Bazin and
46
Noël Burch and
83
Recent Research Programs
116
On Staging in Depth
158
Notes
273
Index
315
Copyright

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Popular passages

Page 319 - Kristin Thompson and David Bordwell. Film History: An Introduction (New York: McGraw-Hill, 1994), 386. 41. 'Parochial Uproar in Ft. Lee: Panics, Before "Foreign Art Films,"
Page 320 - Early Alternatives to the Hollywood Mode of Production: Implications for Europe's Avant-gardes," Film History 5, 4 (1993): 386-404.
Page 321 - Orson Welles and Peter Bogdanovich, This Is Orson Welles, ed. Jonathan Rosenbaum (London, HarperCollins, 1993), p.

About the author (1997)

David Bordwell is Jacques Ledoux Professor of Film Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

David Bordwell is Jacques Ledoux Professor of Film Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

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