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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The Stunt Man is a film about life and art getting all confused to the point that illusion becomes reality , reality is nothing but an illusion , and nothing is ever what it seems to be . In the Twilight Zone tragedy , that is exactly ...
Because the images are so conflicting , the contending realities so confusing , in eighties America nobody seems to know who the good guys and the bad guys are in Central and South America . Nobody seems to know the answer to the ...
Somehow it seems inconceivable that anyone would consider making a film about the momentousness of boy and girl yuppies trying to decide whether or not to exchange keys to their apartments . Lisa ( Brooke Adams ) is similar to Debbie in ...
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The Vietnam War as Film Text
The Coming Home Films
The Terrorism Film Texts
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