Hollywood England: The British Film Industry in the Sixties

Overview

Hollywood England is a study of an era as much as of the cinema, with the screen often reflecting the mood of the “Swinging Sixties.” Alexander Walker reveals how, for the first time, British cinema achieved a truly national character, with films like Billy Liar, the Beatles’ musicals, and the James Bond pictures; directors like Ken Loach and Ken Russell; and stars like Michael Caine and Julie Christie. Yet despite a wealth of exciting new films and talent, by the end of the decade, Hollywood sustained 95 percent...

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Overview

Hollywood England is a study of an era as much as of the cinema, with the screen often reflecting the mood of the “Swinging Sixties.” Alexander Walker reveals how, for the first time, British cinema achieved a truly national character, with films like Billy Liar, the Beatles’ musicals, and the James Bond pictures; directors like Ken Loach and Ken Russell; and stars like Michael Caine and Julie Christie. Yet despite a wealth of exciting new films and talent, by the end of the decade, Hollywood sustained 95 percent of British filmmaking. In tracing these developments—from the sober reality of post-Suez Britain to its consumer boom and new permissiveness—Walker offers sharp appraisals of this pivotal era in British cinema.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
For four decades, Alexander Walker was Britain’s leading film critic and historian, named Critic of the Year three times in the British Press Awards. In this classic trilogy, he gives us an eloquent, witty, thoroughly uncompromising history of the modern British film industry.
Library Journal
The best kind of criticism examines the work in question as well as the world in which it came to exist, and these two books, originally published in England, manage that. Until his death in 2003, Walker was the film critic for London's Evening Standard for 43 years. He was also a passionate admirer and historian of British cinema who wrote as much about the industry as he did about individual films and personalities. Originally published in 1974, Hollywood England is a comprehensive and fascinating look at not only the dynamic minds of British filmmaking in the 1960s-e.g., Ken Russell and John Schlesinger-but also Hollywood's pervasive effects. The always complex machinations of filmmaking in Britain were compounded in the Sixties by the cultural and financial lens of American influence. National Heroes, first published in 1985, focuses on the power brokers of British film. American money had disappeared, and the Swinging Sixties gave way to the violent realism of the Seventies, then a return to classic form in the mid-Eighties with Chariots of Fire. Walker reveals the struggles of producers Lew Grade and David Puttnam throughout this transition and the intriguing parallel between Britain's search for a national character and the films that helped or hindered that effort. Walker's work is especially engaging because he did not simply critique film-he uncovered motives, histories, and personalities of filmmakers while placing them squarely in societal context. There are few, if any, books that explore the industry in all its facets with the breadth and passion of these two exceptional studies of British filmmaking in its most dynamic period. Highly recommended for large public and academic libraries.-Peter Thornell, Hingham P.L., MA Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780752857060
  • Publisher: Orion Publishing Group, Limited
  • Publication date: 10/28/2005
  • Pages: 493
  • Product dimensions: 5.30 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 1.67 (d)

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