The romance of adventure: the genre of historical adventure movies

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University Press of Mississippi, 1993 - Performing Arts - 267 pages
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Here for the first time is a book that defines the historical adventure movie, one of the most enduring, ever-popular, and mythically significant American film genres.
Despite the popularity of historical adventure from the early days of filmmaking, never before has this Hollywood genre been analyzed in a comprehensive manner.
Brian Taves's The Romance of Adventure includes an array of subgenres - swashbucklers, tales of pirates, the sea, exploration, and the building of empires - in films as diverse as The Mark of Zorro, The Three Musketeers, The Count of Monte Cristo, The Buccaneer, Mutiny on the Bounty, Moby Dick, Captain Horatio Hornblower, The Charge of the Light Brigade, Gunga Din, and The Man Who Would Be King.
The author's definition of the historical adventure film emphasizes setting, consistent characterizations, and precise codes of behavior. He illuminates its many branches and shows how such activities as exploration of the world's remote regions and individualistic, armed rebellions for freedom are impelled by the adventurer's values - patriotism, chivalry, and honor.
Taves finds that such movies reflect an idealistic world view and present history more as myth than as factual re-creation, with adventure belonging to an era long past, when morality was drawn in sharp relief.
In romance adventure films the fight for liberty may occur in the castles of Europe, on board a ship on the high seas, or in colonies extending from the Spanish Main to India and Africa. In this way Taves believes that these films metaphorically depict the American Revolution, even though the conflict's essential issues are set in various times and places and indicate the timeless, universal need for liberty and freedom.

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Contents

CHAPTER ONE What Is Adventure?
3
CHAPTER TWO Five Forms of Adventure
15
CHAPTER THREE The Evolution of
56
Copyright

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