Over the past few years “Page Views” has become a space for FQ to highlight some of the most compelling new scholarship in the field of film and media studies. In collaboration with university presses and scholars, “Page Views” provides a dynamic showcase for critical texts and allows authors the opportunity to think through the impact of their works on the crossover audience that remains a hallmark of FQ’s readership. This column marks the first time that Associate Editor Regina Longo interviews two authors of two books written specifically for the crossover audience. Noah Isenberg discusses We’ll Always Have Casablanca: The Life, Legend, and Afterlife of Hollywood’s Most Beloved Movie and Glenn Frankel talks about High Noon: The Hollywood Blacklist and the Making of an American Classic.
On December 13, 2016, a month after the presidential election, Film Quarterly organized an emergency panel with the sponsorship of the Film Society of Lincoln Center. Staged amid the political aftershocks, the event at the Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center’s Amphitheater brought together eight panelists from wildly divergent arenas to engage a rapt audience with its central theme: “Film & Media in A Time of Repression: Practices and Aesthetics of Resistance.”
The fiftieth anniversary of the release of The Battle of Algiers (Gillo Pontecorvo, 1966) offers an occasion to challenge commonplaces about the film and to show that there remains much to be clarified about its character. Typically discussed in terms of its debt to Italian neorealism, The Battle of Algiers can also be related to Italian colonial cinema made during the fascist period. The film recounts the genesis of the Algerian nation, but it is at the same time a film about the end of the French empire. Meanwhile, an analysis of location in the film’s little-discussed coda shows The Battle of Algiers to be the first in a long line of banlieue cinema—that is, it is a film that presciently anticipates postcolonial conditions on the territory of France itself.
Mediating Torture, Vampyr, Film Culture in Madrid, New Paths for German Cinema, and the 2008 Films of the Year
READ: Heaven Knows We’re Digital Now, Cinema for a New Grand Game, The Earrings of Madame de…, La malavita: Gomorrah and Naples
FQ Editor Rob White charts a course through the Autumn 2008 issue, on the occasion of FQ’s golden anniversary. In the fall of 1958, fifty years ago, the inaugural issue of Film Quarterly was published, and it is fascinating to revisit those first years, when the European New Wave cinemas generated a scintillating critical energy in a pioneer magazine. In this anniversary issue, founding editor Callenbach recalls FQ’s origins and traces the development of its agenda; James S. Williams argues that Antonioni’s cinema opened up whole “new spaces of thought and being”; while D. A. Miller reconsiders Visconti’s epic melodrama and its strange “larval beauty.”
National identity is predicated, in part, on the intentional forgetting or remembering of historical events, and cinema plays a role in these processes. In The Afterlife of America’s War in Vietnam, Gordon Arnold traces the many incarnations of the war in American popular culture, deftly demonstrating that retellings of the conflict are often intertwined with political rhetoric.
The problems war presents film columnists are negligible by any human measure. But by the measure of Cultural Studies, the problems are near-absolute. War is war in part because it has the force to warp the world around it, even at a great distance, so thoroughly that every third song, advert, or movie seems to be about the war. In times of crisis, we must all decide again and again to notice the obvious: the sphere of culture is always “based on a true story.”
Writing in the Spring issue, Jonathan Rosenbaum referred to a process whereby film culture, after a 1960s consensus, “splintered into academia and journalism, which often lamentably functioned as mutually indifferent or sometimes even mutually hostile institutions”
Although conflict in the Balkans has been out of the headlines for several years, Danis Tanović’s No Man’s Land (2001) stands out among other recent war movies for its strong indictment of the intertwined nature of war, global power, and media.