Sunshine in the Dark: Florida in the Movies / Edition 1

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Overview

Florida has been the location and subject of hundreds of feature films, from Cocoanuts (1929) to Monster (2004). Portraying the state and its people from the silent era to the present, these films have explored the multitude of Florida images and clichés that have captured the public’s imagination—a nature lover’s paradise, a wildlife refuge, a tourist destination, home to the “cracker,” and a haven for the retired, the rich, the immigrant, and the criminal. Sunshine in the Dark is the first complete study of how the movie industry has immortalized Florida’s extraordinary scenery, characters, and history on celluloid.

            Historians Fernández and Ingalls have identified more than 300 films about Florida—many of them shot on location in the state—to analyze how filmmakers from the Marx Brothers and John Huston to Oliver Stone and Francis Ford Coppola have portrayed the state and its people. Prior to the 1960s, cinematic trips to Florida usually brought happy endings in movies like Moon Over Miami (1942), but since the 1970s, films like Scarface (1982) have emphasized the state’s menacing aspects.

            In the authors’ analysis of the films, which examines location settings, plotlines, and characters, they find a bevy of Florida stereotypes among the leading characters—from the struggling crackers in The Yearling (1946) to the drug-addicted con man in Adaptation (2002). Featuring more than 100 still photographs from movies, as well as filmographies by year and genre, the book is an encyclopedic resource for movie fans and anyone interested in Florida popular culture.

 

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780813029900
  • Publisher: University Press of Florida
  • Publication date: 8/30/2006
  • Edition description: First
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 320
  • Product dimensions: 6.40 (w) x 9.30 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Susan J. Fernández is professor of history at University of South Florida-St. Petersburg. She is the author of Encumbered Cuba: Capital Markets and Revolt, 1878-1895 (UPF). Robert P. Ingalls is professor of history at the University of South Florida-Tampa. He is the author of Urban Vigilantes in the New South: Tampa, 1882-1936 (UPF), and coauthor with Louis Pérez of Tampa Cigar Workers (UPF).

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Table of Contents

Pt. I Settings 13
1 Paradise framed : the natural environment 15
2 Manufacturing paradise : the built environment 41
Pt. II Plots 71
3 Re-creation : starting over in paradise 73
4 Tourism : strangers in paradise 99
5 Crime stories 124
Pt. III Characters 161
6 The first natives 163
7 Ethnic identities 177
8 Gender-defined roles 196
9 Workers and retirees 209
10 Warriors and heroes 227
11 Athletes 240
App List of films with Florida scenes
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