A History of Italian Cinema: From the Silent Era to the Present

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Overview

An unprecedented survey of Italian film from the leading expert in the field

A History of Italian Cinema is a major new study from the author of the bestselling Italian Cinema - which has been published in three landmark editions and celebrated its twenty-fifth anniversary in 2008. Building upon his decades of research, Peter Bondanella has now written the definitive history of the subject, from the birth of cinema to the present day. He has rethought, reorganized, and completely rewritten his previous work, which focused on postwar cinema, and has broadened his coverage of the spaghetti western and comedy genres. Bondanella also now covers a huge range of work that was not previously considered, particularly both popular and ‘B' genres, including: the sword and sandal epic or "peplum" film of the 1950s; the Italian horror film, the so-called spaghetti nightmare films (including the subcategories of horror, the Italian zombie and cannibal films), that began in the 1950s and continue through the present; the giallo or Italian mystery thriller; and the poliziesco or Italian crime film from the 1970s to the present. This new book also examines the emergence of a "third wave" of new auteurs born in the 1950s as well as an even younger group of important directors born in the 1960s who have already made their mark on the direction of the Italian cinema in the third millennium.

Finally, A History of Italian Cinema now includes the most comprehensive bibliography of the subject ever to be assembled in an English-language publication. Erudite, comprehensive, and heavily illustrated throughout, this is an essential purchase for any fan of Italian film.

Praise for Bondanella's previous work in the field:

"Extremely interesting and stimulating."—Bernardo Bertolucci

"A very good book and a very accurate one."—Federico Fellini

"The librarian who does not get Bondanella immediately must be petitioned, picketed, importuned."—Choice

"To measure the progress and development of Anglo-American studies on Italian cinema, one needs only to consider Peter Bondanella's pioneering and seminal Italian Cinema...Bondanella's work carries the crucial merit of having opened up a panoramic view of
Italian national cinema to Anglo-American film scholars who in general were mostly familiar with only a few masterpieces. Over the years,
Bondanella's systematic approach has enabled and inspired countless studies."—Gian Piero Brunetta, Professor of History and Film Criticism, University of Padua, Italy

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781441160690
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Academic
  • Publication date: 10/12/2009
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 704
  • Sales rank: 502,066
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

Peter Bondanella is the author of the groundbreaking Italian Cinema: From Neorealism to the Present, Hollywood Italians, The Cinema of Federico Fellini, and The Films of Roberto Rossellini. In 2009, he was elected to the European Academy of Sciences and the Arts for his contributions to the history of the Italian cinema and his translations or editions of Italian literary classics (Dante, Boccaccio, Machiavelli, Vasari, Cellini). He is Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Comparative Literature, Film Studies, and Italian at Indiana University and lives in St. George, Utah.

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Table of Contents

Preface

I. The Silent Era

II. The Coming of Sound and the Fascist Era

III. The Neorealist Era: Masters of Neorealism—Rossellini, De Sica, Visconti

IV. The Neorealist Era: Exploring the Boundaries of Neorealism

V. The Neorealist Era: The Break With Neorealism, the Cinema of the Reconstruction in Rossellini and Antonioni, Fellini's Trilogy of Character and Grace; and the Return of Melodrama with Visconti and De Sica

VI. The Italian "Peplum": The Sword and Sandal Epic

VII. The Golden Age of Italian Cinema: Commedia all'italiana—Comedy and Social Criticism

VIII. The Golden Age of Italian Cinema: Neorealism's Legacy to a New Generation and the Political Film

IX. The Golden Age of Italian Cinema: The Mateur Auteurs—New Dimensions of Film Narrative in Visconti, Antonioni, De Sica, and Fellini

X. The Golden Age of Italian Cinema: The Spaghetti Nightmare—the Italian Horror Film from the 1950s to the Present

XI. The Golden Age of Italian Cinema: A Fistful of Pasta—Sergio Leone and the Spaghetti Western

XII. The Golden Age of Italian Cinema: Mystery, Gore, and Mayhem—the Italian Giallo XIII. The Golden Age of Italian Cinema: Myth, Marx, and Freud in Pier Paolo Pasolini and Bernardo Bertolucci

XIV. The Poliziesco: Italian Crime Films from the 1970s to the Present

XV. The Old Guard Never Surrenders: Italy's Prewar Auteurs in the 1980s and 1990s

XVI. The Third Wave: A New Generation of Auteurs with Moretti, Nichetti, Trosi, Salvatores, Benigni, Tornatore, Giordana, Amelio, and Ozpetek

XVII. Italian Cinema Enters the Third Millennium

Endnotes

Bibliography

List of photo credits

Index

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