Films about cities abound. They provide fantasies for those who recognize their city and those for whom the city is a faraway dream or nightmare. How does cinema rework city planners' hopes and city dwellers' fears of modern urbanism? Can an analysis of city films answer some of the questions posed in urban studies? What kinds of vision for the future and images of the past do city films offer? What are the changes that city films have undergone?
Cities and Cinema puts urban theory and cinema studies in dialogue. The book's first section analyzes three important genres of city films that follow in historical sequence, each associated with a particular city, moving from the city film of the Weimar Republic to the film noir associated with Los Angeles and the image of Paris in the cinema of the French New Wave. The second section discusses socio-historical themes of urban studies, beginning with the relationship of film industries and individual cities, continuing with the portrayal of war-torn and divided cities, and ending with the cinematic expression of utopia and dystopia in urban science fiction. The last section negotiates the question of identity and place in a global world, moving from the portrayal of ghettos and barrios to the city as a setting for gay and lesbian desire, to end with the representation of the global city in transnational cinematic practices.
The book suggests that modernity links urbanism and cinema. It accounts for the significant changes that city film has undergone through processes of globalization, during which the city has developed from an icon in national cinema to a privileged site for transnational cinematic practices. It is a key text forstudents and researchers of Film Studies, Urban Studies and Cultural Studies.
About the Author:
Barbara Mennel is an Assistant Professor of German Studies and Cinema Studies in the Department of Germanic and Slavic Studies and in the Film and Media Studies Program in the English Department at the University of Florida, Gainesville
|Publisher:||Taylor & Francis|
|Series:||Routledge Critical Introductions to Urbanism and the City Series|
|Edition description:||2nd ed.|
|Product dimensions:||6.25(w) x 9.25(h) x (d)|
About the Author
Barbara Mennel is the Rothman Chair and Director of the Center for the Humanities and the Public Sphere at the University of Florida. She is an Associate Professor of Film Studies and German Studies in the Departments of English and Languages, Literatures, and Cultures. Her recent books include Women at Work in Twenty-First-Century European Cinema (2019) and Queer Cinema: Schoolgirls, Vampires, and Gay Cowboys (2012).
Table of Contents
List of figures vii
Introduction: the founding myth of cinema, or the "train effect" 1
Introduction to Section I 19
Modernity and the city film: Berlin 21
The dark city and film noir: Los Angeles 46
The city of love: Paris 61
Introduction to Section II 81
City film industry: Hong Kong 83
The city in ruins and the divided city: Berlin, Belfast, and Beirut 103
Utopia and dystopia: fantastic and virtual cities 130
Introduction to Section III 151
Ghettos and barrios 153
The city as queer playground 176
The global city and cities in globalization 195
Conclusion: from the "train effect" to the "favela effect" - how to do further research 210