Opening Wednesday at A Theater or Drive-in Near You

Opening Wednesday at A Theater or Drive-in Near You

The Shadow Cinema of the American '70s

eBook - 2017
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"When we think of '70s cinema, we think of classics like The Godfather, Taxi Driver, and The Wild Bunch. but the riches found in the overlooked B movies of the time, rolled out wherever they might find an audience, unexpectedly tell an eye-opening story about post-Watergate, post-Vietnam America. Revisiting the films that don't make the Academy Award montages, Charles Taylor finds a treasury many of us have forgotten, movies that in fact "unlock the secrets of the times." Celebrated film critic Taylor pays homage to the trucker vigilantes, meat magnate pimps, blaxploitation "angel avengers," and taciturn factory workers of grungy, unartful B films such as Prime Cut, Foxy Brown, and Eyes of Laura Mars. He creates a compelling argument for what matters in moviemaking and brings a pivotal American era vividly to life in all its gritty, melancholy complexity."-- Provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York : Bloomsbury USA, 2017
ISBN: 9781632868176
1632868172
Branch Call Number: Overdrive eBook
Characteristics: 1 online resource

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bolan1972
Nov 04, 2018

I would have liked to see some genre titles added to this book but still an interesting read.

note to the administrators: the previous comment has been duplicated and is listed as two comments. I enjoyed this book, very much, as I enjoyed many of the movies he discusses here. I saw EYES OF LAURA MARS on the tube, which seemed truncated in that form, and was interested to read what he said about it. EYES was filmed in New York City, which is where this author lives, and he connected with it as conveying a sense of realism which captured the era, amongst a certain social class. He admires the acting job Ms. Dunaway did in the film, and so do I. Other films analyzed at length include ALOHA BOBBY ROSE, and VANISHING POINT, and that film filmed on location in the Kansas City stockyards, starring Lee Marvin and Gene Hackman, and featuring the film debut of Sissy Spacek (PRIME CUT). The author does a good number on Blaxploitation flicks, to the effect that this generation's young black activists (reactionists) might learn a thing or two. He does a good section on the relationship between Robert Culp and Bill Cosby (written before Cosby's conviction on sex charges). This author has many penetrating insights and the book is most certainly worth checking out, most especially so if you regard yourself as a cinephile.

l
lukasevansherman
Aug 15, 2017

As a nascent cinephile in the late 80s, one of the first things I learned was that the 70s was the golden age of American Cinema: the studio system was crumbling, maverick directors and actors were given free reign, violence and sex was far more acceptable, and, simply put, movies grew up. The decade gave us masterpieces like "The Godfather," "Chinatown," "Taxi Driver," and "Annie Hall." And then, if you accept conventional wisdom (And the opinion of Peter Biskind in his hysterical hymn to the films of the decade, "Easy Riders, Raging Bulls."), Steven Spielberg and George Lucas ruined everything. Charles Taylor doesn't really subscribe to this theory and has fresh approach to the cinema of the 70s, avoiding the blockbusters and masterpieces and looking at what he calls "the shadow cinema" of the decade. He looks at 15 films, none of which were either very popular or critically acclaimed. It's in the exploitation films, b-movies, and disreputable genre films that Taylor finds the true pulse of the 70s. He looks at 15 films, some obscure and some well-known, and he sheds light on the familiar (Peckinpah's "Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia," "Foxy Brown") and the lesser known ("Prime Cut," "Winter Kills"). Taylor's cultural criticism approach is in the mold of Robert Warshow and J. Hoberman and, like them, he's smart, sharp, and illuminating. For a look at the more mainstream 70 films, there's the documentary "A Decade Under the Influence."

l
lukasevansherman
Aug 15, 2017

As a nascent cinephile in the late 80s, one of the first things I learned was that the 70s was the golden age of American Cinema: the studio system was crumbling, maverick directors and actors were given free reign, violence and sex was far more acceptable, and, simply put, movies grew up. The decade gave us masterpieces like "The Godfather," "Chinatown," "Taxi Driver," and "Annie Hall." And then, if you accept conventional wisdom (And the opinion of Peter Biskind in his hysterical hymn to the films of the decade, "Easy Riders, Raging Bulls."), Steven Spielberg and George Lucas ruined everything. Charles Taylor doesn't really subscribe to this theory and has fresh approach to the cinema of the 70s, avoiding the blockbusters and masterpieces and looking at what he calls "the shadow cinema" of the decade. He looks at 15 films, none of which were either very popular or critically acclaimed. It's in the exploitation films, b-movies, and disreputable genre films that Taylor finds the true pulse of the 70s. He looks at 15 films, some obscure and some well-known, and he sheds light on the familiar (Peckinpah's "Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia," "Foxy Brown") and the lesser known ("Prime Cut," "Winter Kills"). Taylor's cultural criticism approach is in the mold of Robert Warshow and J. Hoberman and, like them, he's smart, sharp, and illuminating. For a look at the more mainstream 70 films, there's the documentary "A Decade Under the Influence."

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