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the subjects, they were generally not supposed to involve scripts, props or professional actors. Many of these films were of an ethnographic character in the sense that they concerned the customary life of one or more of the many ethnic minorities living within the boundaries of the Soviet political universe. 41 The typical form of the kulturfilm is best understood in the context of Soviet nationality policy at the time. In the most summary terms, this was based, in principle

in Beyond observation
Open Access (free)
The early British films of Joseph Losey

premièred at the end of 1963. For Bogarde, this prestigious endorsement of his extraordinary performance as Barrett, the man-servant who brings the life of the aristocrat he serves crashing down about his ears, was a career turning-point, the fulfilment of his ambition to be recognised as a major screen actor and not simply a matinee idol. It marked a similar culmination for its director, Joseph Losey, who

in British cinema of the 1950s
Open Access (free)
Woman in a Dressing Gown

Amy is its unacceptable face, scatty, scruffy and loud. 3 However, what prevents any simple reading of the film as purely an indictment of Amy as a bad housewife is, as Marcia Landy has argued, its insistent focus on ‘the sights and sounds of Amy’s life … the visualization of her milieu’. 4 Simply the fact that during most of the film we are with her rather than Jim or Georgie helps to skew our

in British cinema of the 1950s

romanticism, politics, class, masculinity, sexuality and social problems. Durgnat writes appreciatively about Hammer and Gainsborough, purveyors of despised melodramas and horror films; he takes Powell and Pressburger seriously and gives sympathetic consideration to directors like Val Guest, Roy Baker, J. Lee Thompson, Basil Dearden, Roy and John Boulting and John Guillermin who were regarded as irredeemably

in British cinema of the 1950s
Outdoor screens and public congregations

Park. This arguably represents a reversal of the dominant trend during the second half of the twentieth century, when the primary means by which public events were transmitted and received was by television in domestic contexts, leading to anxieties that public culture and public life had been displaced by a more atomised, private mode of engagement. However, as Scott McQuire observes, ‘the explanatory

in The British monarchy on screen
Open Access (free)
The early films of John Marshall and Timothy Asch

, the hunters are introduced with romantic profiles inspired by Moby-Dick : ‘/Qui was a simple, kindly man and an optimist, who tended to remember only the better times of his life’; right, the giraffe has come to a halt, but still she will not fall. Filmed in August 1952, this image was intercut with shots of the hunters hurling their spears filmed three years later. When it was released, The Hunters was initially received with

in Beyond observation
Separate Tables, separate entities?

his life. The fragile equanimity of their conversation disintegrates when Anne hints that she is prepared to forgive him (‘Eight years will cure most scars’) and John rushes out into the night to seek solace at ‘The Feathers’. The wise, realistic hotel manager, Miss Cooper (Pat), who remarks that superficial conversation is an obligatory part her job, observes pertinently to Anne, ‘People are

in British cinema of the 1950s
Open Access (free)

the real facts. It was a pretty ugly story. I was furious about this. We engaged Washington publicist Frank Mankiewicz, who had worked with Robert Kennedy, and we demanded fair time on the Post; we didn’t get it. I did get an article printed eventually. Newsweek blasted us. The cover story was titled ‘Why Oliver Stone’s new movie can’t be trusted’.1 It was also much criticised in the New York Times –​there were more than a dozen articles of different sizes from the editorial board, Tom Wicker, political and cultural critics condemning the film. I would only remind

in The cinema of Oliver Stone
Open Access (free)

asserted that political documentary filmmaking was becoming a response to the ‘corporatization and trivialization of news’ in the early 2000s.11 W. (2008), Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps (2010) and Savages (2012) all reasserted the Stone template of corporate enquiry, but tangentially –​reflecting both changes in the director, and the sensibilities of the film industry itself. Stone himself noted that premium cable TV channels including HBO were offering much greater freedoms to directors than theatrical distribution to tell their tales in more raucous and incendiary

in The cinema of Oliver Stone
Open Access (free)
The principles of Observational Cinema

hunting or warfare, all of which tend to be male-dominated activities in the traditional societies where they worked. In the praxis of Observational Cinema, on the other hand, even when the subject matter is a major ceremonial or political event, the principal focus of attention of the film is not so much on the public performance of the event itself, as on the way in which this event is construed and emplaced within the ideas and relations of the everyday life of both women and men. Thus, for example, in The Wedding Camels

in Beyond observation