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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... later , Taylor's perception is confirmed as two battle - hardened veterans , Elias and O'Neil ( John C. McGinley ) , argue about whose fireteam should go out on ambush . “ Whaddaya want me to do ? " O'Neil whines , “ Send some of my ...
... Later , Lime once again tries to warn the detectives that Americans are their own worst enemies in Vietnam : “ You despise me because you think I am corrupt when in reality you are too innocent to see corruption which is right before ...
... later Cutter's wife , Mo , greets Richard Bone with the words , " Poor Richard . " The mythic associa- tion comes clear later in the film when Cutter obsessively closes in pursuit of Cord who is repeatedly associated with whiteness and ...
The Vietnam War as Film Text
The Coming Home Films
The Terrorism Film Texts
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