Carmen on Film: A Cultural History

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The story of Carmen, the Spanish Gypsy femme fatale, is one of the most adapted stories in the history of cinema. The films are often a combination of Mérimée’s 1845 novella and ... the opera Bizet fashioned from the novella thirty years later. Carmen on Film: A Cultural History focuses on 16 of the most important Carmen films, ranging across three main cinemas (Hollywood, France, and Spain), stretching from the earliest films to the most recent (by director): Calmettes (1910), DeMille (1915), Walsh (1915), Chaplin (1916), Lubitsch (1918), Walsh (1927), Feyder (1926), Rey (1938), Vidor (1948), Preminger (1954), Demicheli (1959), Saura (1983), Godard (1984), Rosi (1984), Ramaka (2001), and Aranda (2003). The story of Carmen has captured the imagination of audiences and readers for more than 150 years. Powrie, Babington, Davies, and Perriam ask why—and in their examination of the numerous cinematic retellings of this popular tale, they offer insight into the cultural significance of the fictional lives and deaths of Carmen. Read more Show Less

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Overview

The story of Carmen, the Spanish Gypsy femme fatale, is one of the most adapted stories in the history of cinema. The films are often a combination of Mérimée's 1845 novella and the opera Bizet fashioned from the novella thirty years later. Carmen on Film: A Cultural History focuses on 16 of the most important Carmen films, ranging across three main cinemas (Hollywood, France, and Spain), stretching from the earliest films to the most recent (by director): Calmettes (1910), DeMille (1915), Walsh (1915), Chaplin (1916), Lubitsch (1918), Walsh (1927), Feyder (1926), Rey (1938), Vidor (1948), Preminger (1954), Demicheli (1959), Saura (1983), Godard (1984), Rosi (1984), Ramaka (2001), and Aranda (2003).

The story of Carmen has captured the imagination of audiences and readers for more than 150 years. Powrie, Babington, Davies, and Perriam ask why-and in their examination of the numerous cinematic retellings of this popular tale, they offer insight into the cultural significance of the fictional lives and deaths of Carmen.
Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Weekend Reformer
An especially good feature of the book is the way in which the politics of each of the three countries dictates the way in which Carmen is portrayed in films . . . 'Carmen on Film' is a very valuable tool for appreciating the versions of the story that are presently on DVDs.
—Frank Behrens
Screen (UK)
"This excellent collected volume, authored by four scholars well known in their specialist areas...is the first book dedicated to the corpus of Carmen films from the silent period to the present day and in the three national areas of the USA, France and Spain...The first of the book’s many virtues is thus the significant archival labour involved in establishing a corpus of over eighty films. Indeed, even non-extant films are considered here...The telling attention to mise-en-scene in a sociohistorical context is...is matched by some unusually close readings in which shot-by-shot analysis offers unexpected and rewarding insights...'Carmen on Film' remains an impeccable scholarly guide to a fascinating figure that, as the authors acknowledge more than once, remains eternally elusive even as she is so repeatedly resurrected." —Paul Julian Smith, Screen (UK), 2008, issue 49

— Paul Julian Smith

Screen (UK) - Paul Julian Smith

"This excellent collected volume, authored by four scholars well known in their specialist areas...is the first book dedicated to the corpus of Carmen films from the silent period to the present day and in the three national areas of the USA, France and Spain...The first of the book’s many virtues is thus the significant archival labour involved in establishing a corpus of over eighty films. Indeed, even non-extant films are considered here...The telling attention to mise-en-scene in a sociohistorical context is...is matched by some unusually close readings in which shot-by-shot analysis offers unexpected and rewarding insights...'Carmen on Film' remains an impeccable scholarly guide to a fascinating figure that, as the authors acknowledge more than once, remains eternally elusive even as she is so repeatedly resurrected." —Paul Julian Smith, Screen (UK), 2008, issue 49

Susan McClary

"An enormous amount of work and thought went into the writing of this manuscript. It covers the entire history of the Carmen genre from Mérimée's novella through the latest research and adaptations. Given the universal and endless fascination Carmen inspires, the book should prove useful to scholars and also attractive to general readers." —Susan McClary, author of Feminine Endings

From the Publisher
"An enormous amount of work and thought went into the writing of this manuscript. It covers the entire history of the Carmen genre from Mérimée's novella through the latest research and adaptations. Given the universal and endless fascination Carmen inspires, the book should prove useful to scholars and also attractive to general readers." —Susan McClary,
author of Feminine Endings
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780253348883
  • Publisher: Indiana University Press
  • Publication date: 6/23/2007
  • Pages: 320
  • Product dimensions: 6.40 (w) x 9.40 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Phil Powrie is Professor of French Cultural Studies and Director of the Centre for Research into Film at the University of Newcastle upon Tyne. He is author or editor of several books, including French Cinema in the 1980s.

Bruce Babington is Professor of Film Studies in the Department of English at the University of Newcastle upon Tyne. He is author of Blue Skies and Silver Linings: Aspects of the Hollywood Musical.

Ann Davies is Lecturer in the School of Modern Languages at the University of Newcastle upon Tyne. She is author of numerous articles on gender relations in film and culture.

Chris Perriam is Professor of Hispanic Studies at the University of Newcastle upon Tyne. He is author of Stars and Masculinities in Spanish Cinema: From Banderas to Bardem.
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Table of Contents

Contents
Acknowledgments
Introduction
1.
Mapping Carmen
2. Theorizing Carmen
3. Carmen of the Americas
4. 1915:
the year of two Carmens (DeMille, Walsh)
5. German-American relations (Lubitsch, 1918
& 1921)
6. The most surprising Carmen (Walsh, 1926)
7. Carmen of the suburbs
(Vidor, 1948)
8. Apropos Dis an' Dat (Preminger, 1954)
9. Carmen and the French cinema
10. Two silent Carmens (Calmettes, 1910; Feyder, 1926)
11. Jean-Luc's women (Godard, 1984)
12. Social-realist fantasies (Rosi, 1984)
13. A
postcolonial Carmen (Ramaka, 2001)
14. Carmen and the Spanish cinema
15. Carmen under Franco (Rey, 1938; Demicheli, 1959)
16. Carmen after Franco (Saura, 1983; Aranda,
2003)
17. Carmen and stardom
18. Rita Hayworth
19. Viviane
Romance
20. Sara Montiel
21. Plácido
Domingo
Conclusion
Filmography
Bibliography
Notes
Index

Indiana University Press

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