David Konow, “Reel Terror: The Scary, Bloody, Gory, Hundred-Year History of Classic Horror Films” (St. Martin’s Press, 2012)
Filmmakers discovered in the early twentieth¬†century that Americans would gladly pay to be scared to death. As the decades marched on, dismissive critics regularly wrote obituaries for the relentlessly popular horror genre, even as other kinds of films (Blaxploitation,… Read More
Louis Menashe, “Moscow Believes in Tears: Russians and Their Movies” (New Academia, 2010)
Did you see one of Eisenstein’s masterpieces “The Battleship Potemkin” and “Alexander Nevsky” in a Russian or Soviet history class? Were you captivated by Tarkovsky’s brooding long shots in movies such as “Solaris” and… Read More
S. Brent Plate, “Religion and Film: Cinema and the Re-Creation of the World” (Wallflower Press, 2008)
As each frame of a film goes by we witness a new world that is situated in space and time. This process of worldmaking happens through the cinematic lens but also through the myths and rituals of religious traditions. Or… Read More
David A. Kirby, “Lab Coats in Hollywood: Science, Scientists, and Cinema” (MIT Press, 2011)
First things first: this was probably the most fun I’ve had working through an STS monograph. (Really: Who doesn’t like reading about Jurassic Park and King Kong?) In addition to being full of wonderful anecdotes about the film and television… Read More
Jennifer Frost, “Hedda Hopper’s Hollywood: Celebrity Gossip and American Conservatism” (NYU Press, 2011)
Any pop culture scholar worth her salt will tell you that discussion of Beyonce’s baby bump or Charlie Sheen’s unique sex life is far from apolitical, but, at times, gossip columnists have engaged more transparently in political debate. Hedda Hopper,… Read More
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