The Films of the Eighties: A Social History
Southern Illinois University Press, 1993 - 335 pages
In this remarkable sequel to his Films of the Seventies: A Social History, William J. Palmer examines more than three hundred films as texts that represent, revise, parody, comment upon, and generate discussion about major events, issues, and social trends of the eighties.
Palmer defines the dialectic between film art and social history, taking as his theoretical model the "holograph of history" that originated from the New Historicist theories of Hayden White and Dominick LaCapra. Combining the interests and methodologies of social history and film criticism, Palmer contends that film is a socially conscious interpreter and commentator upon the issues of contemporary social history. In the eighties, such issues included the war in Vietnam, the preservation of the American farm, terrorism, nuclear holocaust, changes in Soviet-American relations, neoconservative feminism, and yuppies.
Among the films Palmer examines are Platoon, The Killing Fields, The River, Out of Africa, Little Drummer Girl, Kiss of the Spiderwoman, Silkwood, The Day After, Red Dawn, Moscow on the Hudson, Troop Beverly Hills, and Fatal Attraction. Utilizing the principles of New Historicism, Palmer demonstrates that film can analyze and critique history as well as present it.
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... Hill where the central battle for the control of Dong Op Bia seems to have no intrinsic meaning , strategic or otherwise . ) 27 In her essay on Hamburger Hill , Pauline Kael decides that “ almost inevita- bly the hill comes to represent ...
... Hill , therefore , is caught between two types of nothingness and can only choose action , going up that hill one more time - some choice ! Hamburger Hill is different from Platoon and Full Metal Jacket in that it is fact - based . The ...
... Hill and Off Limits come the closest to presenting a true black point of view on the Vietnam War . When Doc ( Courtney B. Vance ) , the most articulate spokesman for the black point of view in Hamburger Hill , who declares that they are ...
The Vietnam War as Film Text
The Coming Home Films
The Terrorism Film Texts
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