Lost Illusions: American Cinema in the Shadow of Watergate and Vietnam, 1970-1979

Lost Illusions: American Cinema in the Shadow of Watergate and Vietnam, 1970-1979

by David Cook

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Overview

The American film industry transformed itself during the 1970s: a new order emerged out of the chaos of the former studio system. A new rating system freed directors to explore serious subjects but allowed for the expansion of exploitation films as well. So while unprecedented social and political commentary emanated from the film-school-trained "New Hollywood" auteurs, the bigger change was the major studios' embrace of sensationalist content, mass advertising, and saturation booking. The methods of fringe exploitation producers became the norm.

Some of the films discussed in this book include: Five Easy PiecesChinatownCarnal Knowledge, Straw DogsA Clockwork Orange, Mean StreetsThe ConversationNashvilleShampooTaxi Driver, and Apocalypse Now.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780520232655
Publisher: University of California Press
Publication date: 03/15/2002
Series: History of the American Cinema , #9
Edition description: First Edition
Pages: 717
Product dimensions: 7.00(w) x 10.00(h) x 1.30(d)

About the Author

David A. Cook is Founding Director of the Film Studies program at Emory University, where he is Professor of Film. He is the author of A History of Narrative Film and the "Motion Picture History" entry in the Encyclopedia Britannica.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Contributors
Contents
Preface: A Time of Illusion
A Note on Box-Office Revenues
A Note on Aspect Ratios

1 Introduction: A Decade of Change
2 Formative Industry Trends, 1970—1979
3 Manufacturing the Blockbuster:
The "Newest Art Form of the Twentieth Century"
4 The Auteur Cinema: Directors and Directions
in the "Hollywood Renaissance"
5 Genres 1: Revision, Transformation, and Revival
6 Genres II: Exploitation and Allusion
7 Orders of Magnitude I: Majors, Mini-Majors,
"Instant Majors," and Independents
8 Orders of Magnitude II: Costs, Agents, Stars
9 Technological Innovation and Aesthetic Response
10 Motion Picture Exhibition in 1970s America
Douglas Gornery
11 Looking Back and Turning Inward:
American Documentary Films of the Seventies
William Rothman
12 Avant-Garde Cinema of the Seventies
Robin Blaetz

Avant-Garde Cinema Filmography
Appendixes:
APPENDIX 1 ANNUAL U.S. BOX OFFICE RECEIPTS, 1970-1979
APPENDIX 2 AVERAGE WEEKLY ATTENDANCE, 1970-1980
APPENDIX 3 INFLATION 1970-1g8o, ACCORDING TO "CONSUMER PRICE INDEX"
FIGURES COMPILED BY THE U.S. DEPARTMENT OF COMMEHCE
APPENDIX 4 AVERAGE TICKET PRICE IN THE U.S. EACH YEAR, 1970-1980
APPENDIX 5 NUMBER OF MOVIE THEATERS IN THE U.S., 1970-1980
APPENDIX 6 MAJOR COMPANY SHARE OF NEW RELEASES HANDLED BY
NATIONAL DISTRIBUTORS, 1970-1980
APPENDIX 7 MARKET DOMINATION BY SIX LEADING DISTRIBUTORS OF
THEATRICAL FILMS, 1977 AND 1980
APPENDIX 8 MARKETING EXPENSES FOR MAJOR RELEASES, 1970-1980
APPENDIX 9 MAJOR STUDIO REVENUES AND AFTER-TAX PROFITS, 1970-1980
APPENDIX 10 LATE SIXTIES FLOPS
APPENDIX 11 HIT MOVIES OF THE 1968-1969 SEASON
APPENDIX 12 TOP TwENTY RENTAL FILMS, 1970-1980
APPENDIX 13 NORTH AMERICAN RENTALS IN EXCESS OF $22.25
MILLION, 1970-1980
APPENDIX 14 MAJOR ACADEMY AWARDS, 1970-1980

Notes
Bibliography
Picture Sources
General Index
Index of Films

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