Michael Mann is one of the most important American filmmakers of the past forty years. His films exhibit the existential concerns of art cinema, articulated through a conspicuous and recognizable visual style and yet integrated within classical Hollywood narrative and genre frameworks. Since his beginnings as a screenwriter in the 1970s, Mann has become a key figure within contemporary American popular culture as writer, director, and producer for film and television. This volume offers a detailed study of Mann's feature films, from The Jericho Mile (1979) to Public Enemies (2009), with consideration also being given to parallels in the production, style, and characterization in his television work. It explores Mann's relationship with classical genres, his thematic concentration on issues of morality and masculinity, his film adaptations from literature, and the development and significance of his trademark visual style within modern American cinema.
Few other contemporary Hollywood filmmakers fit the category of 'genre stylist' as well as Michael Mann, the director of such films as Heat, The Insider, Ali, Collateral, Manhunter, Thief, and Miami Vice. Mann's film style marks him as a director who chooses the iconographic backdrop of a genre as a canvas upon which he and his collaborators can craft a unique cinematic vision. The Cinema of Michael Mann traces the innovative and under-explored stylistic contours of Mann's work, the director's inflection upon and innovation within preexisting genre frameworks, and the relationship of both style and genre to issues of authorship and film criticism. Steven Rybin's critical study of Mann's cinema, and the importance of the filmmaker's themes to our contemporary world, is valuable for both film scholars and cinephiles alike.
Michael Mann's films receive a detailed analysis as existential dramas, including Heat, Collateral , The Last of the Mohicans and Public Enemies. The book demonstrates that Mann's films perform critical engagement with existentialism, illustrating the problems and opportunities of living according to this philosophy.
Michael Mann first made his mark as a writer for such television programs as Starsky and Hutch, Police Story, and Vegas. In 1981 he made his feature film directing debut with the James Caan thriller Thief, and in the 1980s he served as a writer and executive producer for the groundbreaking programs Miami Vice and Crime Story. Though he has delved into other genres, Mann’s career as a writer, producer, and director has consistently focused on criminal activity, from small-time hoods and professional thieves to corporate manipulators and serial killers. In Michael Mann: Crime Auteur, Steven Rybin looks at the television programs and films that Mann has stamped with his personal signature. This book closely examines the themes and techniques used in films such as Manhunter, Heat, The Insider, and Collateral and connects these elements to his work on the non-genre films The Last of the Mohicans and Ali. A revised and significantly expanded edition of The Cinema of Michael Mann (2007), this book includes new chapters on Public Enemies and the big screen version of Miami Vice, as well as Mann’s work on the shows Crime Story and Luck. Covering Mann’s entire career, this book will be of interest to fans of the writer/director’s body of work as well as to scholars of both film and television.
Known for restoring vitality and superior craftsmanship to the crime thriller, American filmmaker Michael Mann has long been regarded as a talented triple threat capable of moving effortlessly between television and feature films as a writer, director, and executive producer. His unique visual sense and thematic approach are evident in the Emmy Award-winning The Jericho Mile (1979), the cult favorite The Keep (1983), the American epic The Last of the Mohicans (1992), and the Academy Award-nominated The Insider (1999) as well as his most recent works -- Ali (2001), Miami Vice (2006), and Public Enemies (2009). The Philosophy of Michael Mann provides an up-to-date and comprehensive account of the work of this highly accomplished filmmaker, exploring the director's recognizable visual style and the various on-screen and philosophical elements he has tested in his thirty-five-year career. The essays in this wide-ranging book will appeal to fans of the revolutionary filmmaker and to philosophical scholars interested in the themes and conflicts that drive his movies.
This comprehensive study of prolific British filmmaker Michael Winterbottom explores the thematic, stylistic, and intellectual consistencies running through his eclectic and controversial body of work. This volume undertakes a close analysis of a TV series directed by Winterbottom and sixteen of his films ranging from television dramas to transnational co-productions featuring Hollywood stars, and from documentaries to costume films. The critique is centered on Winterbottom's collaborative working practices, political and cultural contexts, and critical reception. Arguing that his work delineates a 'cinema of borders', this study examines Winterbottom's treatment of sexuality, class, ethnicity, and national and international politics, as well as his quest to adequately narrate inequality, injustice, and violence.
This reader is the first to bring together a selection of Mann's own interviews where he reflects on his film and television productions. The sixteen interviews provide historical context, interpretation and evaluation of the auteur's work. They encompass his entire career as a feature filmmaker and television producer/director as he and others reflect on his themes, working methods, artistic development and career achievements. The book aims to open up Mann's body of work, making it available for comparison with the work of his contemporaries, and to provide fresh insights into his film and television work. A substantive introductory essay, chronology and filmography provide additional bases for understanding the interviews, essays and work of this major filmmaker.
Michael Haneke is one of the most important directors working in Europe today, with films such as Funny Games (1997), Code Unknown (2000), and Hidden (2005) interrogating modern ethical dilemmas with forensic clarity and merciless insight. Haneke's films frequently implicate both the protagonists and the audience in the making of their misfortunes, yet even in the barren nihilism of The Seventh Continent (1989) and Time of the Wolf (2003) a dark strain of optimism emerges, releasing each from its terrible and inescapable guilt. It is this contingent and unlikely possibility that we find in Haneke's cinema: a utopian Europe. This collection celebrates, explicates, and sometimes challenges the worldview of Haneke's films. It examines the director's central themes and preoccupations—bourgeois alienation, modes and critiques of spectatorship, the role of the media—and analyzes otherwise marginalized aspects of his work, such as the function of performance and stardom, early Austrian television productions, the romanticism of The Piano Teacher (2001), and the 2007 shot-for-shot remake of Funny Games.
Colour is one of the few remaining uncharted territories of film studies, and its centrality to the construction and reception of film narratives has only recently been recognised. After a century of widespread critical and theoretical neglect, colour is now poised to become a prime focus within film studies at all levels, and this book will constitute a key voice within this debate. In a series of wide-ranging critical essays, marked by authoritative and innovative perspectives, the volume explores the shifting technologies, theories, and practices of colour in cinema, highlighting the intricate relationship between technological, philosophical, and artistic concerns, and making a compelling case for colour as a dominant and complex signifier in filmic discourse. The essays are divided into three main sections exploring the historical and technical dimensions of colour, the aesthetics of colour, and the significance of colour in relation to broader issues of race, gender, and identity, and are interdisciplinary and transnational in their focus. They provide the reader with a clear understanding of the significance of colour, exploring new pathways and identifying discoveries still to be made.
This timely volume explores the massively popular cinema of writer-director James Cameron. It couches Cameron's films within the evolving generic traditions of science fiction, melodrama, and the cinema of spectacle. The book also considers Cameron's engagement with the aesthetic of visual effects and the 'now' technology of performance-capture which is arguably moving a certain kind of event-movie cinema from photography to something more akin to painting. This book is explicit in presenting Cameron as an authentic auteur, and each chapter is dedicated to a single film in his body of work, from The Terminator to Avatar. Space is also given to discussion of Strange Days as well as his short films and documentary works.