Jean Cocteau

Jean Cocteau

by James S. Williams
     
 

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This is a comprehensive, original and accessible account of all aspects of Jean Cocteau's work in the cinema. It is the first major study in English to appear for over forty years and casts new light on Cocteau's most celebrated films as well as those often neglected or little known.

Jean Cocteau is not only one of French cinema's greatest and most influential

Overview

This is a comprehensive, original and accessible account of all aspects of Jean Cocteau's work in the cinema. It is the first major study in English to appear for over forty years and casts new light on Cocteau's most celebrated films as well as those often neglected or little known.

Jean Cocteau is not only one of French cinema's greatest and most influential auteurs whose work covered all the major genres but also an experimenter, collaborator, theorist and all-round ambassador of film.

This lucid account provides a complete introduction to Cocteau's cinematic project in the context of his entire oeuvre, detailed analysis of individual films, and a thematic engagement with all his cinema from a range of interdisciplinary perspectives.

The Cocteau that emerges is at once a materialist filmmaker and visionary who is committed to realism in all its guises and reveals the wonder and mystery of what he called 'the cinematograph'.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"James S. William's Jean Cocteau is both a welcome new study of the films of a versatile artist and director and a precious addition to Manchester University Press's useful series on French Directors. His study elegantly weaves historical context, biographical element and in--depth analysis of the formal characteristics of Cocteau's films. Williams produces an inspiring study and manages to suggest new paths in the exploration of the artist's unique corpus of film work. This captivating book should thus be of interest to students as well as to specialists in cinematic culture" --Martine Beugnet, Edinburgh University, Journal of Contemporary European Studies

The Gay and Lesbian Review - Richard M. Berrong

"Well-written and well-paced . . . A good summation of Cocteau's significance as a gay artist."
The Gay and Lesbian Review

"Well-written and well-paced . . . A good summation of Cocteau's significance as a gay artist."--The Gay and Lesbian Review

— Richard M. Berrong

Film Matters
“Comprehensive and easily accessible . . . Williams painstakingly crafts a seminal study on the life and art of Jean Cocteau with a flair for language and a scholarly knowledge of his subject.”

French Studies

“[A] highly absorbing account of Cocteau’s colorful, yet troubled life leaves the reader eager to (re)visit the work of one of the most fascinating artists of the twentieth century.” —French Studies

Forum for Modern Language Studies
  “This sturdy, compact and fast-moving survey of Cocteau’s life and work runs from his precocious false start as a poet in the style of Anna de Noailles, through his reinvention as a radical modernist after inspirational meetings with Diaghilev and Picasso, and the fulfilment of his new ‘life project’ in his subsequent long career as a poet working in verse, prose, theatre, art and film . . . neatly illustrated and requires no knowledge of French.” —Forum for Modern Language Studies

Modern Language Review
“Another welcome addition to the still relatively limited critical literature on this important figure . . . this is an approachable and well-illustrated text, which will cause its readers to look at Cocteau in a new and more favorable light, and is an important contribution to the reassessment of the author that is currently under way.” —Modern Language Review

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780719058844
Publisher:
Manchester University Press
Publication date:
04/15/2010
Series:
French Film Directors Series
Pages:
240
Product dimensions:
5.10(w) x 7.80(h) x 0.70(d)

Meet the Author

James S. Williams is Professor of Modern French Literature and Film at Royal Holloway, University of London

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