The liveliness and importance of Spanish cinema is increasingly being recognised outside Spain, in film festivals, television exposure, and courses in Institutions of Higher Education. To a large extent this is 'auteur' or art-movie cinema. Spanish Cinema concentrates upon that tradition, focusing upon the key films in a period stretching from 1952 to the present day. The term 'auteur' has lately fallen into disrepute. The idea - most actively promoted by Cahiers du Cinema in the late 1950s and early 1960s - that the director is to a film what an author is to a poem, play or novel, has been subjected to much criticism since structuralist and post-structuralist attacks on the author. But even in pre-'death of the author' days film raised its own specific problems about authorship. Nevertheless, since the initial excitement of French critical theory's provocative assault on conventional notions of authorship, and taking into account specific problems related to the collaborative nature of film-making, attempts have recently been made to reclaim some of the ground lost by the author in these critical and theoretical battles.
This volume offers lively readings of films by key directors working to a large extent in the art-movie/'auteurist' field, and aims to strike a balance between representative films, directors and periods. Each chapter concentrates on a single film, discussing it in accessible critical language that takes account both of the distinctiveness of film as an art form and of the material and socio-historical contexts in which each film was made.
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Oxford University Press
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Author Biography - Peter Evans
Peter Evans is Professor of Hispanic Studies, Queen Mary and Westfield College, University of London