Spectacular Bodies: Gender, Genre and the Action Cinema / Edition 1

Spectacular Bodies: Gender, Genre and the Action Cinema / Edition 1

by Yvonne Tasker, Tasker Yvonne
     
 

While films such as Rambo, Thelma and Louise and Basic Instinct have operated as major points of cultural reference in recent years, popular action cinema remains neglected within contemporary film criticism.
Spectacular Bodies unravels the complexities and pleasures of a genre often dismissed as 'obvious' in both its pleasure and its

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Overview

While films such as Rambo, Thelma and Louise and Basic Instinct have operated as major points of cultural reference in recent years, popular action cinema remains neglected within contemporary film criticism.
Spectacular Bodies unravels the complexities and pleasures of a genre often dismissed as 'obvious' in both its pleasure and its politics, arguing that these controversial films should be analysed and understood within a cinematic as well as a political context.
Yvonne Tasker argues that today's action cinema not only responds to the shifts in gendered, sexual and racial identities which took place during the 1980s, but reflects the influences of other media such as the new video culture. Her detailed discussion of the homoeroticism surrounding the muscleman hero, the symbolic centrality of blackness within the crime narrative, and the changing status of women within the genre, addresses the constitution of these identities through the shifting categories of gender, class, race, sex, sexuality and nation. Spectacular Bodies also examines the ambivalence of supposedly secure categories of popular cinema, questioning the existing terms of film criticism in this area and addressing the complex pleasures of this neglected form.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780415092241
Publisher:
Taylor & Francis
Publication date:
12/28/1993
Series:
Comedia Series
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
216
Product dimensions:
6.10(w) x 9.30(h) x 0.60(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

Table of Contents

List of plates
Acknowledgements
Introduction: Gender and the action cinema1
1Women Warriors: Gender, sexuality and Hollywood's fighting heroines14
2Black Buddies and White Heroes: Racial discourse in the action cinema35
3New Hollywood, Genre and the Action Cinema54
4Tough Guys and Wise-Guys: Masculinities and star images in the action cinema73
5Masculinity, Politics and National Identity91
6The Body in Crisis Or the Body Triumphant?109
7Action Heroines in the 1980s: The limits of 'musculinity'132
8The Cinema as Experience: Kathryn Bigelow and the cinema of spectacle153
Notes167
Filmography178
Bibliography186
Index191

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