Cities and Cinema (Routledge Critical Introductions to by Barbara Mennel

By Barbara Mennel

Films approximately towns abound. they supply fantasies in the event you realize their urban and people for whom town is a far off dream or nightmare. How does cinema transform urban planners’ hopes and town dwellers’ fears of recent urbanism? Can an research of urban motion pictures solution a number of the questions posed in city reviews? What varieties of imaginative and prescient for the long run and pictures of the previous do urban motion pictures provide? What are the alterations that urban movies have gone through?

Cities and Cinema places city conception and cinema reports in discussion. The book’s first part analyzes 3 vital genres of urban movies that keep on with in ancient series, each one linked to a selected urban, relocating from town movie of the Weimar Republic to the movie noir linked to l. a. and a dead ringer for Paris within the cinema of the French New Wave. the second one part discusses socio-historical topics of city reports, starting with the connection of movie industries and person towns, carrying on with with the portrayal of struggle torn and divided towns, and finishing with the cinematic expression of utopia and dystopia in city technology fiction. The final part negotiates the query of identification and position in a world international, relocating from the portrayal of ghettos and barrios to the town as a surroundings for homosexual and lesbian wish, to finish with the illustration of the worldwide urban in transnational cinematic practices.

The ebook means that modernity hyperlinks urbanism and cinema. It bills for the numerous adjustments that urban movie has gone through via methods of globalization, within which the town has built from an icon in nationwide cinema to a privileged website for transnational cinematic practices. it's a key textual content for college kids and researchers of movie reports, city reports and cultural studies.

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Additional resources for Cities and Cinema (Routledge Critical Introductions to Urbanism and the City)

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The film’s narrative drives towards that final constellation encapsulated in its ultimate shot. Metropolis opens with a shot of a city signaling its abstract design, which reflects the modernist vision of functionalism and the absence of decoration. Onto this shot continued 42 • Modernity and the city film are projected close-ups of industrial machines that function in a well-orchestrated rhythm. By showing only parts of machines, the close-ups celebrate the industrial aesthetic and at the same time obscure the concrete function of the machines.

The three groups of films are also linked by the influence they had on each other: style and themes of Weimar cinema reappear in film noir, which in turn is quoted and referenced by the directors of the French New Wave. These connections do not contradict the understanding of national cinema; even during its height, transnational exchange was common, sometimes resulting from migration, as when filmworkers from the Weimar Republic fled the Hitler regime and found work in Hollywood. Later, French directors paid homage to individual filmmakers and actors in Hollywood who sometimes, like Fritz Lang, were film émigrés from Germany.

Several of the important film noir directors were German or Austro-Hungarian and had fled Hitler’s dictatorship in Europe; consequently, this chapter, and particularly the case study of Billy Wilder’s Double Indemnity (1944), investigates the continuation of and breaks between the aesthetic and topical representation of the Weimar city film and film noir. Parallel to the first chapter, here I discuss Los Angeles as an allegory for modernity and also continue examining the ways in which gender functions in city films: the flâneur Los Angeles • 47 and the prostitute in the Weimar city film are reincarnated in the private detective and the femme fatale.

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