In this twentieth-anniversary millennial edition, Kolker continues and expands his inquiry into the cinematic representation of culture by updating and revising the chapters on the directors discussed in the first edition-- Stanley Kubrick, Martin Scorsese, Robert Altman, and Steven Spielberg-- to include their most important works since 1988, analyzing those films which have made important advances in the directors' careers and which have given cause for rethinking the films that preceded them. Included is a profile of Arthur Penn's career followed by a new comparative study of Oliver Stone, who mirrors Penn's practice of drawing his films out of historical and ideological currents. Placing the films of Penn, Stone, Kubrick, Scorsese, Spielberg, and Altman in an ideological perspective, Kolker both illuminates their relationship to one another and to larger currents in our culture, and emphasizes the statements their films make about American society and culture. This edition includes a new preface, a requiem for Stanley Kubrick, updated filmography, and 48 images from various films discussed through the text.
The American film directors featured here have created significant bodies of work. Notes Kolker (film studies, Univ. of Maryland), for all the challenge and adventure, their films speak to a continual impotence in the world, an inability to change and to create change. A fount of cinematic knowledge, the author provides the context for his subjects, persuasively arguing that Citizen Kane and Psycho hold pride of place as influences. He draws parallels between Leni Riefenstahl s Triumph of the Will (1935) and Steven Spielberg s Close Encounters of the Third Kind (1978), Alfred Hitchcock s Marnie (1964) and Stanley Kubrick s Eyes Wide Shut (1999), and John Wayne s Ethan Edwards in John Ford s The Searchers (1956) and Robert DeNiro s Travis Bickle in Martin Scorsese s Taxi Driver (1976). Evidently, the cinema of loneliness is not entirely new. Since the first and second editions, Francis Ford Coppola has been excised and Oliver Stone added. Essential for scholars and well-informed fans, the book is recommended for film and performing arts collections as well as for larger public libraries Kim Holston, American Inst. for Chartered Property Casualty Underwriters, Malvern, PA Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.
Robert Kolker is a New York magazine contributing editor and a finalist for the National Magazine Award. He writes frequently about issues surrounding criminal justice and the unforeseen impact of extraordinary events on everyday people. He lives with his family in Brooklyn. This is his first book.