Science Fiction Cinema and 1950s Britain

This book is open access and available on www.bloomsburycollections.com.

Science Fiction Cinema and 1950s Britain

This book is open access and available on www.bloomsburycollections.com. It is funded by Knowledge Unlatched. For the last sixty years discussion of 1950s science fiction cinema has been dominated by claims that the genre reflected US paranoia about Soviet brainwashing and the nuclear bomb. However, classic films, such as Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956) and It Came from Outer Space (1953), and less familiar productions, such as It! The Terror from Beyond Space (1958), were regularly exported to countries across the world. The histories of their encounters with foreign audiences have not yet been told. Science Fiction Cinema and 1950s Britain begins this task by recounting the story of 1950s British cinema-goers and the aliens and monsters they watched on the silver screen. Drawing on extensive archival research, Matthew Jones makes an exciting and important intervention by locating American science fiction films alongside their domestic counterparts in their British contexts of release and reception. He offers a radical reassessment of the genre, demonstrating for the first time that in Britain, which was a significant market for and producer of science fiction, these films gave voice to different fears than they did in America. While Americans experienced an economic boom, low immigration and the conferring of statehood on Alaska and Hawaii, Britons worried about economic uncertainty, mass immigration and the dissolution of the Empire. Science Fiction Cinema and 1950s Britain uses these and other differences between the British and American experiences of the 1950s to tell a new history of the decade's science fiction cinema, exploring for the first time the ways in which the genre came to mean something unique to Britons.

The British Reception of 1950s Science Fiction Cinema

Unable to draw on a British reception history of domestic and US 1950s science fiction cinema, debates about the genre have sometimes been underpinned by the presumption that western audiences responded to these films in a uniform manner.

The British Reception of 1950s Science Fiction Cinema

Scholarship on 1950s American science fiction cinema has tended to explore the relationship between these films and their domestic contexts of production and reception. They are often characterised as reflections of US anxieties about communism and nuclear technology. However, many such films were exported to Britain where these concerns were articulated and understood differently. The ways in which this different national context of reception shaped British interpretations of American science fiction cinema of this era has not yet been accounted for. Similarly, although some research has addressed 1950s British science fiction, this scholarship has been comparatively concise and has left gaps in our knowledge about the domestic reception of these films. Unable to draw on a British reception history of domestic and US 1950s science fiction cinema, debates about the genre have sometimes been underpinned by the presumption that western audiences responded to these films in a uniform manner. This thesis seeks to complicate our understanding of the genre by suggesting the specificity of the British reception history of science fiction cinema during the 1950s. The paucity of documentary evidence of British responses to 1950s science fiction films makes an audience study impossible. Within the intellectual framework of the New Film History, this thesis instead employs a contextually- activated approach to reception. Making extensive use of archival sources, newsreels, newspapers, magazines and other such documentary evidence, it explores some of the different contexts in which 1950s science fiction cinema was received in Britain and suggests how these factors might have shaped the interpretation of the genre. The thesis examines the interplay between American and British 1950s science fiction cinema and the British public understanding of communism, immigration, nuclear technology and scientific advancement. It contributes to our knowledge of these films by demonstrating that Britons did not necessarily understand 1950s science fiction cinema in the same way as Americans because they were party to a differently inflected series of public debates. It exposes the flexibility of the metaphors utilised by the genre during this period and their susceptibility to reinterpretation in different national contexts. This research makes visible, in a more extensive manner than has yet been accomplished, the specificity of the British reception history of 1950s science fiction cinema, and thereby provides a means to resist assumptions about the similarity of western audiences during this decade. Its conclusions call for further research into other national reception histories of these films, so that they too are not overshadowed by the better known American history of the genre, and into the possibility that the British reception history of other genres might similarly have been obscured.

British Science Fiction Cinema

Brown, Paul J. (1995) All You f\:eed is Blood: The Films of Norman J ll'arren, Upton, Cambridgeshire: Midnight Media. Harbottle, Philip and Holland, Steve (1992) Vultures of the Void: A History of British Science Fiction Publishing 1 ...

British Science Fiction Cinema

British Science Fiction Cinema is the first substantial study of a genre which, despite a sometimes troubled history, has produced some of the best British films, from the prewar classic Things to Come to Alien made in Britain by a British director. The contributors to this rich and provocative collection explore the diverse strangeness of British science fiction, from literary adaptions like Nineteen Eighty-Four and A Clockwork Orange to pulp fantasies and 'creature features' far removed from the acceptable face of British cinema. Through case studies of key films like The Day the Earth Caught Fire, contributors explore the unique themes and concerns of British science fiction, from the postwar boom years to more recent productions like Hardware, and examine how science fiction cinema drew on a variety of sources, from TV adaptions like Doctor Who and the Daleks, to the horror/sf crossovers produced from John Wyndham's cult novels The Day of the Triffids and The Midwich Cuckoos (filmed as Village of the Damned). How did budget restrictions encourage the use of the 'invasion narrative' in the 1950s films? And how did films such as Unearthly Stranger and Invasion reflect fears about the decline of Britain's economic and colonial power and the 'threat' of female sexuality? British Science Fiction Cinema celebrates the breadth and continuing vitality of British sf film-making, in both big-budget productions such as Brazil and Event Horizon and cult exploitation movies like Inseminoid and Lifeforce.

Science Fiction Cinema and 1950s Britain

94 95 96 97 98 99 100 101 102 103 104 105 106 107 108 109 110 111 112 113 114 115 Bonnie Noonan, Women Scientists in Fifties Science Fiction Films (Jefferson: McFarland, 2005), 4. Ibid., 48. Ibid. Biskind, Seeing is Believing, ...

Science Fiction Cinema and 1950s Britain

For the last sixty years discussion of 1950s science fiction cinema has been dominated by claims that the genre reflected US paranoia about Soviet brainwashing and the nuclear bomb. However, classic films, such as Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956) and It Came from Outer Space (1953), and less familiar productions, such as It! The Terror from Beyond Space (1958), were regularly exported to countries across the world. The histories of their encounters with foreign audiences have not yet been told. Science Fiction Cinema and 1950s Britain begins this task by recounting the story of 1950s British cinema-goers and the aliens and monsters they watched on the silver screen. Drawing on extensive archival research, Matthew Jones makes an exciting and important intervention by locating American science fiction films alongside their domestic counterparts in their British contexts of release and reception. He offers a radical reassessment of the genre, demonstrating for the first time that in Britain, which was a significant market for and producer of science fiction, these films gave voice to different fears than they did in America. While Americans experienced an economic boom, low immigration and the conferring of statehood on Alaska and Hawaii, Britons worried about economic uncertainty, mass immigration and the dissolution of the Empire. Science Fiction Cinema and 1950s Britain uses these and other differences between the British and American experiences of the 1950s to tell a new history of the decade's science fiction cinema, exploring for the first time the ways in which the genre came to mean something unique to Britons.

British Science Fiction Film and Television

Aldiss, Brian W. Billion Year Spree: The True History of Science Fiction. New York: Doubleday, 1973._____ and Harry Harrison, eds. Hell's Cartographers: Some Personal Histories ofScience Fiction Writers. London: Weidenfeld and Nicolson, ...

British Science Fiction Film and Television

Written by international experts from a range of disciplines, these essays examine the uniquely British contribution to science fiction film and television. Viewing British SF as a cultural phenomenon that challenges straightforward definitions of genre, nationhood, authorship and media, the editors provide a conceptual introduction placing the essays within their critical context. Essay topics include Hammer science fiction films, the various incarnations of Doctor Who, Stanley Kubrick’s A Clockwork Orange, and such 21st-century productions as 28 Days Later and Torchwood.

Historical Dictionary of Science Fiction Cinema

The British television series Dr. Who spread into theatrical film, while British studios also produced a number of alien-invasion films that were as much horror as science fiction, paralleling in this sense the continuing development of ...

Historical Dictionary of Science Fiction Cinema

In the years since Georges Méliès’s Le voyage dans la lune (A Trip to the Moon) was released in 1902, more than 1000 science fiction films have been made by filmmakers around the world. The versatility of science fiction cinema has allowed it to expand into a variety of different markets, appealing to age groups from small children to adults. The technical advances in filmmaking technology have enabled a new sophistication in visual effects. This second edition of Historical Dictionary of Science Fiction Cinema contains a chronology, an introduction, and an extensive bibliography. The dictionary section has over 400 cross-referenced entries on important personalities, films, companies, techniques, themes, and subgenres. This book is an excellent resource for students, researchers, and anyone wanting to know more about science fiction cinema.

Science Fiction Cinema

London is therefore spared the alien onslaught and both the dangerously depraved Nyah and the wife-killing convict get ... So, the targeting of an adult audience often differentiated the British science fiction/horror films from the ...

Science Fiction Cinema

This major new study offers a broad historical and theoretical reassessment of the science fiction film genre. The book explores the development of science fiction in cinema from its beginnings in early film through to recent examples of the genre. Each chapter sets analyses of chosen films within a wider historical/cultural context, while concentrating on a specific thematic issue. The book therefore presents vital and unique perspectives in its approach to the genre, which include discussion of the relevance of psychedelic imagery, the 'new woman of science', generic performance and the prevalence of 'techno-orientalism' in recent films. While American films will be one of the principle areas covered, the author also engages with a range of pertinent examples from other nations, as well as discussing the centrality of science fiction as a transnational film genre. Films discussed include The Day the Earth Stood Still, The Body Snatchers, Forbidden Planet, The Quatermass Experiment, 2001: A Space Odyssey, Demon Seed, Star Trek: The Motion Picture, Star Wars, Altered States, Alien, Blade Runner, The Brother from Another Planet, Back to the Future, The Terminator, Predator, The One, Dark City, The Matrix, Fifth Element and eXistenZ. Key Features*Thematically organised for use as a course text.*Introduces current and past theories and practices, and provides an overview of the main themes, approaches and areas of study.*Covers new and burgeoning approaches such as generic performance and aspects of postmodern identity.*Includes new interviews with some of the main practitioners in the field: Roland Emmerich, Paul Verhoeven, Ken Russell, Stan Winston, William Gibson, Brian Aldiss, Joe Morton, Dean Norris and Billy Gray.

Contemporary European Science Fiction Cinemas

British Science Fiction Television: A Hitchhiker's Guide. London: I.B. Tauris. Cornea, Christine. 2007. Science Fiction Cinema: Between Fantasy and Reality. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press. ———. 2011. British Science Fiction ...

Contemporary European Science Fiction Cinemas

Contemporary European Science Fiction Cinemas charts the evolution of European science fiction cinema in the 21st century, a period in which Europe itself has faced myriad crises. Key to this study is an exploration of how European science fiction responds to prevalent issues such as the financial crisis, political extremism and violence, large-scale migration and indeed the potential breakup of the European Union itself. What futures does science fiction cinema envision for Europe? Is it capable of moving beyond dystopian visions of a continent beset by seemingly omnipresent turbulence? Emphasising science fiction’s unique ability to estrange, exploit and reflect upon popular concerns, this book directly engages with such questions, accounting for ongoing mutations in the very nature of the European project as it does so.

100 Science Fiction Films

Hochscherf, Tobias, and James Leggott, British Science Fiction Film and Television (Jefferson, NC: McFarland, 2011). Holston, Kim R., and Tom Winchester, Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror Film Sequels, Series, and Remakes: An ...

100 Science Fiction Films

A comprehensive guide to science fiction films, which analyzes and contextualizes the most important examples of the genre, from Un voyage dans la lune (1902), to The Road (2009).

Science Fiction Film

London: Wallflower Press. Gunning, T. (1986) 'The Cinema of Attractions: Early Film, Its Spectator and the Avant-Garde', Wide Angle, 8, 3—4: 63—70. ... Hunter, I. (1999) British Science Fiction Cinema. London: Routledge.

Science Fiction Film

Science Fiction Film develops a historical and cultural approach to the genre that moves beyond close readings of iconography and formal conventions. It explores how this increasingly influential genre has been constructed from disparate elements into a hybrid genre. Science Fiction Film goes beyond a textual exploration of these films to place them within a larger network of influences that includes studio politics and promotional discourses. The book also challenges the perceived limits of the genre - it includes a wide range of films, from canonical SF, such as Le voyage dans la lune, Star Wars and Blade Runner, to films that stretch and reshape the definition of the genre. This expansion of generic focus offers an innovative approach for students and fans of science fiction alike.

Soviet Science Fiction Cinema and the Space Age

Vivian Sobchack, Screening Space: The American Science Fiction Film (New Brunswick: Rutgers University Press, 1997), 63. 18. Miranda J. Banks, “Monumental ... See Steve Chibnall, “4 Alien Women,” in British Science Fiction Cinema, ed.

Soviet Science Fiction Cinema and the Space Age

This study examines Soviet science fiction cinema from 1957 to 1990 and its relation to the space age. The author examines dozens of films and examines their aesthetics and how the films related to conceptions of the future, utopia, the ideological guidelines of the Soviet state, and changes within the Soviet system.

A Distant Technology

J. P. Telotte carefully blends film, technology, cultural, and genre studies to illuminate this nearly forgotten era in our cinematic history and to show, through analysis of classics like The Invisible Ray, Metropolis, and Things to Come, ...

A Distant Technology

Science fiction films celebrate and critique the impact of a burgeoning technology on the world's cultural, political, and social milieu. The Machine Age, roughly delineated by the two decades between World Wars, was a watershed period during which modern society entered into an ambiguous embrace with technology that continues today. J. P. Telotte carefully blends film, technology, cultural, and genre studies to illuminate this nearly forgotten era in our cinematic history and to show, through analysis of classics like The Invisible Ray, Metropolis, and Things to Come, how technology played a major role as motif, "actor," and producer. What he also discovers as he ranges among the American, British, Russian, French, and German science fiction cinema — as well as mainstream films, figures, and cultural products such as the New York World's Fair — is a fundamental ambivalence, embedded in the films themselves, about the very machine-age ethos they promoted. Even as advances in the technical apparatus of filmmaking elevated it from mere entertainment to a medium of general communication and genuine artistic expression, Machine Age science fiction films remained curiously distant from and often skeptical of the very machines on which their narratives focus. The resulting tensions, Telotte writes, "thus seem to intersect with those implicit in a Western world that was struggling with its own transition into the modern," rendering the films' task inevitably paradoxical and difficult

British Trash Cinema

See Jane Graham, 'Hoodies Strike Fear in British Cinema', Guardian.co.uk, 5 November 2009, available at ... British Science Fiction Cinema (London and New York: Routledge, 1999) and Daniel O'Brien, SF:UK: How British Science Fiction ...

British Trash Cinema

BRITISH TRASH CINEMA is the first overview of the wilder shores of British exploitation and cult paracinema from the 1950s onwards. From obscure horror, science fiction and sexploitation, to art-house camp, Hammer's prehistoric fantasies and the worst British films ever made, author I.Q. Hunter draws on rare archival material and new primary research to take us through the weird and wonderful world of British trash cinema. Beginning by outlining the definitions of trash films and their place in British film history, Hunter explores topics including: Hammer's overlooked fantasy films, the emergence of the sexploitation film in the 1950s and 60s, the sex industry in the 1970s, Ken Russell's high camp Gothic and erotic adaptations since the 1980s, gross-out comedies, revenge films, and contemporary straight-to-DVD horror and erotica.

Directory of World Cinema Britain

British science fiction film is marked out as a cinema of ideas by its indebtedness to intellectually- and artistically-rich literary and televisual influences such as the work of HG Wells, George Orwell, John Wyndham, PD James, ...

Directory of World Cinema  Britain

Bringing to mind rockers and royals, Buckingham Palace and the Scottish Highlands, Britain holds a special interest for international audiences who have flocked in recent years to quality British exports like Fish Tank, Trainspotting and The King’s Speech. A series of essays and articles exploring the definitive films of Great Britain, this addition to Intellect’s Directory of World Cinema series turns the focus on England together with Northern Ireland, Scotland, and Wales.With a focus on the most successful, cerebral and critically important films to have come out of Britain, this volume explores the diversity of and genres found throughout British film, highlighting important regional variations that reflect the distinctive cultures of the countries involved. Within these categories, Emma Bell and Neil Mitchell have curated a diverse and rich collection of films for review—from Hitchcock’s spy thriller The 39 Steps to Powell and Pressburger’s art classic The Red Shoes to the gritty and heartfelt This is England. Interspersed throughout the book are critical essays by leading experts in the field providing insight into shifting notions of Britishness, important industry developments and the endurance of the British film industry. For those up on their Brit film facts and seeking to test their expertise, the book concludes with a helpful ‘test Your Knowledge’ section.A user-friendly look at the cultural and artistic significance of British cinema from the silent era to the present, Directory of World Cinema: Britain will be an essential companion to the country’s bright and resurgent film industry.

Contemporary American Science Fiction Film

Abbott, Stacey (2009) “Arthouse SF Film,” in Mark Bould, Andrew M. Butler, Adam Roberts and Sherryl Vint (Eds.) The Routledge Companion to Science Fiction, London: Routledge, pp. 463–467. Berardinelli, James (2014) “Interstellar,” ...

Contemporary American Science Fiction Film

Contemporary American Science Fiction Film explores and interrogates a diverse variety of popular and culturally relevant American science fiction films made in the first two decades of the new millennium, offering a ground-breaking investigation of the impactful role of genre cinema in the modern era. Placing one of the most popular and culturally resonant American film genres broadly within its rich social, historical, industrial, and political context, the book interrogates some of the defining critical debates of the era via an in-depth analysis of a range of important films. An international team of authors draw on case studies from across the science fiction genre to examine what these films can tell us about the time period, how the films themselves connect to the social and political context, how the fears and anxieties they portray resonate beyond the screen, and how the genre responds to the shifting coordinates of the Hollywood film industry. Offering new insights and perspectives on the cinematic science fiction genre, this volume will appeal primarily to scholars and students of film, television, cultural and media studies, as well as anyone interested in science fiction and speculative film.

Focus On 100 Most Popular 1990s Science Fiction Films

In World weavers: globalization, science fiction, and the cybernetic revolution, ed. ... Oshii Films set in 2029 Ghost in the Shell films Japanese films Japanese animated science fiction films British films British science fiction films ...

Focus On  100 Most Popular 1990s Science Fiction Films


Directory of World Cinema Britain 2

Children of Men It sometimes seems that, despite its popularity on the nation's televisions, science fiction is not native to British cinema. For a country that lays claim to many authors vital to the international development of the ...

Directory of World Cinema Britain 2

Volume 1 was very much an 'overview' of British cinema, from its earliest days to the present. In this, the second volume, the essays will be more specific to certain periods and will encompass the evolutions of individual genres and directors. This will make for complimentary essays to volume 1 rather than simply an updating of them. The section on silent cinema and melodrama is replaced in this volume by War and Family Films the former being an interesting genre that has periodically appeared in British films in differing ways, and the latter because Britain has always produced hugely successful movies that appeal to family audiences. Rather than have three individual essays pertaining to Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales, the volume will include examples of films made or set in those countries within the genre reviews. The volume will include information on established British directors such as Ken Loach and Danny Boyle as well as writing about avant-garde newcomer Ben Wheatley, who directed the fabulously strange, "A Field in England" (2013). This volume will also shine the spotlight on the British Film Institute, and its role in funding, preservation and education in relation to British cinema. This book takes a different angle to the first volume and as such would make an excellent companion to "Directory of World Cinema: Britain.""

The Liverpool Companion to World Science Fiction Film

Following World War i, British science fiction film production entered a quiet period through the 1920s, as american and european film industries demonstrated skill at design and scale of production that British studios failed to match.

The Liverpool Companion to World Science Fiction Film

Series numbering from publisher's website.

The Routledge Companion to Science Fiction

Conrich, I. (1999) “Trashing London: the British colossal creature film and fantasies of mass destruction,” in I.Q.Hunter (ed.) British Science Fiction Cinema, London: Routledge. Drazen, P. (2002) Anime Explosion! The what? why?

The Routledge Companion to Science Fiction

The Routledge Companion to Science Fiction is a comprehensive overview of the history and study of science fiction. It outlines major writers, movements, and texts in the genre, established critical approaches and areas for future study. Fifty-six entries by a team of renowned international contributors are divided into four parts which look, in turn, at: history – an integrated chronological narrative of the genre’s development theory – detailed accounts of major theoretical approaches including feminism, Marxism, psychoanalysis, cultural studies, postcolonialism, posthumanism and utopian studies issues and challenges – anticipates future directions for study in areas as diverse as science studies, music, design, environmentalism, ethics and alterity subgenres – a prismatic view of the genre, tracing themes and developments within specific subgenres. Bringing into dialogue the many perspectives on the genre The Routledge Companion to Science Fiction is essential reading for anyone interested in the history and the future of science fiction and the way it is taught and studied.

Contemporary Masculinities in Fiction Film and Television

The imagination of catastrophe and the importance of national borders, mobility and transmission is not simply a concern of British science fiction film, as we saw in the previous chapter, ...

Contemporary Masculinities in Fiction  Film and Television

While masculinity has been an increasingly visible field of study within several disciplines (sociology, literary studies, cultural studies, film and tv) over the last two decades, it is surprising that analysis of contemporary representations of the first part of the century has yet to emerge. Professor Brian Baker, evolving from his previous work Masculinities in Fiction and Film: Representing Men in Popular Genres 1945-2000, intervenes to rectify the scholarship in the field to produce a wide-ranging, readable text that deals with films and other texts produced since the year 2000. Focusing on representations of masculinity in cinema, popular fiction and television from the period 2000-2010, he argues that dominant forms of masculinity in Britain and the United States have become increasingly informed by anxiety, trauma and loss, and this has resulted in both narratives that reflect that trauma and others which attempt to return to a more complete and heroic form of masculinity. While focusing on a range of popular genres, such as Bond films, war movies, science fiction and the Gothic, the work places close analyses of individual films and texts in their cultural and historical contexts, arguing for the importance of these popular fictions in diagnosing how contemporary Britain and the United States understand themselves and their changing role in the world through the representation of men, fully recognising the issues of race/ethnicity, class, sexuality, and age. Baker draws upon current work in mobility studies and in the study of masculinities to produce the first book-length comparative study of masculinity in popular culture of the first decade of the twenty-first century.