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A celebration

This book offers a startling re-evaluation of what has until now been seen as the most critically lacklustre period of the British film history. It includes fresh assessment of maverick directors; Pat Jackson, Robert Hamer and Joseph Losey, and even of a maverick critic Raymond Durgnat. The book features personal insights from those inidividually implicated in 1950s cinema; Corin Redgrave on Michael Redgrave, Isabel Quigly on film reviewing, and Bryony Dixon of the BFI on archiving and preservation. A classic image from 1950s British cinema would be Jack Hawkins in The Cruel Sea, the epitome of quiet English integrity. Raymond Durgnat's A Mirror for England: British Movies from Austerity to Affluence, which deals extensively with British films of the 1950s, was written in the mid-1960s and was published in 1970. In a 1947 article called 'Angles of Approach' Lindsay Anderson delivered a fierce attack on contemporary British film culture, outlining a model for a devoted politics of creation, well in line with what we would later understand as auteurism and art cinema aesthetics . The war films of the 1950s together constitute the assented-to record of the emotions and moral judgments called upon to set in order those disorderly events. The book also talks about the Festival of Britain, White Corridors, and four Hamer's post-Ealing films: The Spider and the Fly, The Long Memory, Father Brown and The Scapegoat. A number of factors have contributed to the relative neglect of the 1950s as a decade in British cinema history.

Open Access (free)
Fixing the past in English war films
Fred Inglis

, ‘solidarity’, ‘character’, home. Sixty or so subsequent years have corroded this innocence. Consumer capitalism and the absence of war have together worked to underfeed ‘solidarity’ until it has become so thin we can see through it, and placed the values of radical individualism (identity, fulfilment, self-discovery and so forth ) at the centre of the board. But the war films of the 1950s will nonetheless be

in British cinema of the 1950s
Ian Mackillop
and
Neil Sinyard

retreated into quaintly comic evocations of community or into nostalgic recollections of the war. (It was Brian McFarlane who suggested that Lewis Gilbert’s stereotypical war film of 1953, The Sea Shall Not Have Them , could be more aptly retitled The Sea is Welcome to Them .) Coming after the golden period of the immediate post-war years (with Olivier’s rousing Shakespeare, Lean’s compelling Dickens, the passionate opuses of

in British cinema of the 1950s
From Vietnam to the war in the Persian Gulf
John Storey

little visual space in Hollywood representations of the war. Yet, according to US Justice Department figures, between 1966 and 1973, 191,840 men refused to be drafted. 34 This has never been represented. One can of course respond by pointing out that these are war films, and therefore the anti-war movement is peripheral to their narrative project. To a certain extent this is of course true. But can the same argument be used to

in Memory and popular film
Robert Murphy

), Violent Playground (1958) and Beat Girl (1960) (‘System as Stalemate’). Most of Powell and Pressburger’s wartime films appear alongside Asquith’s The Demi-Paradise (1943), Hitchcock’s The Skin Game (1931) and Lean’s Great Expectations (1946) in ‘The Nine Lives of Colonel Blimp’; the post-war films turn up in ‘Between Two Worlds’ where Powell is classified as a romantic

in British cinema of the 1950s
Open Access (free)
Pat Jackson’s White Corridors
Charles Barr

Blimp (1943); and Tearle’s Dr Groom, like his grandfather in Mandy , has affinities with Blimp, both in his obstinacy and in his final graceful concessions. 12 White Corridors can, then, be linked with equal plausibility both to wartime documentary and to the war films of a team who positioned themselves in explicit opposition to documentary; two important streams come together that revive the wartime

in British cinema of the 1950s
Open Access (free)
Ian Scott
and
Henry Thompson

Platoon dispute when he wrote to Eric Pleskow at Orion Pictures in August 1984: Notwithstanding Stone’s frustration, in fact industry chieftains such as Pleskow were not wide of the mark in their reading of current national sentiment. With Ronald Reagan as president, as William Palmer notes, the early 1980s had been marked by a distinct shift in the reading and understanding of the Vietnam War. Films such as The Deer Hunter and Apocalypse Now were harsh and unyielding but they unwittingly contributed towards a new national discourse, led by Reagan and featuring John

in The cinema of Oliver Stone
Open Access (free)
Baker and Berman, and Tempean Films
Brian Mcfarlane

bill, an arrangement which was clearly to the advantage of Tempean. Tempean finally wound up in the early 1960s, having by this time produced several ‘A’ films, including the war film Sea of Sand (1958), the horror films Blood of the Vampire (1958), The Flesh and the Fiends (1959) and Jack the Ripper (1959), an unusual tale of pre-World War I anarchists in London, The

in British cinema of the 1950s
Open Access (free)
Ian Scott
and
Henry Thompson

heterosexual one involving Alexander (Colin Farrell) and his wife Roxane (Rosario Dawson). References to Alexander’s relationships with Hephaestion (Jared Leto) and Bagoas (Francisco Bosch) are essentially confined to knowing looks and supporting dialogue. Complicating all these speculations on structure –​the absence of a conventional hero/​quest story, the not-​fully realised component of Philip’s death, and the presentation of sexuality –​is the fact You cannot associate homosexuality with the military in this country. Audiences want their war films straight. From the

in The cinema of Oliver Stone
Open Access (free)
Ian Scott
and
Henry Thompson

, Hollywood’s post-​studio-​ era pretensions broke the shackles of rigid control and consensus. It was ironic, then, that as a new decade dawned, the social and political conventions that Hollywood was absorbing and replicating shifted back towards their Production Code-​ era moorings. This trend found prominent expression in a distinctly conservative tranche of military and war films including First Blood (Ted Kotcheff, 1982), Red Dawn (John Milius, 1984) and Top Gun (Tony Scott, 1986), which were a long way removed from the New Hollywood-​era selection above. Stone was

in The cinema of Oliver Stone