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The British Musical Film [Paperback]

John Mundy
2.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
Price: 14.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

1 April 2007 0719063213 978-0719063213
"This book is to be recommended as a good, informative, broad-based survey, useful for students of film, media, drama and cultural studies who are looking for an entry into this broad genre and to use this text as a general resource." Christine Etherington-Wright, Studies in Musical Theatre "Mundy is an unabashed aficionado of the British musical film, and his expertise and knowledge in this area are evident in this encyclopedic volume. The book follows an easy-to-read, chronological format and covers all major and many minor British musical films from inception of sound to the present." W.W Dixon, University of Nebraska Lincoln Choice Current Reviews for Academic Libraries March 2008 Vol. 45 No. 07 The British musical film is the first book to examine a neglected area of British cinema as it developed from the early so-called 'silent' period to the present. Offering a comprehensive survey of musical films across the decades, it also includes detailed critical analysis of individual films and the creative personnel, including directors, stars, lyricists, composers and musical directors, who worked on them. Scholarly but clearly written, the book traces the development of a distinctive genre within British cinema, noting ways in which it differs from the Hollywood musical and setting the films in their historical and cultural context. Adopting a chronological approach, the book starts with the importance of music to the cinema-going experience before the coming of synchronised sound in the late 1920s and then examines the explosion of musical films featuring British musical talent in the 1930s, and the role of musical films during the years of the Second World War. The book examines the transition in musical taste reflected in musical films during the 1950s, and the importance of pop music on-screen in the 1960s. Important innovations in the British musical film of the 1970s and 1980s are analysed, as are examples of contemporary musical films that reflect an increasingly heterogeneous British culture. As well as analysing Oscar-winning musicals such as The Red Shoes and Oliver!, this study also uncovers musical films that have been unjustly neglected for far too long. In asserting the importance of the musical film and its relationship with a vibrant British popular music culture, this study makes a significant contribution to the growing awareness of the rich distinctiveness of British cinema.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Manchester University Press (1 April 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0719063213
  • ISBN-13: 978-0719063213
  • Product Dimensions: 2.2 x 15.9 x 22.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 2.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,587,344 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Product Description


This first book-length study of the British musical film is a valuable contribution to our appreciation of the genre. (Roger Philip Mellor, Sight and Sound, vol 17 issue 11) --Roger Philip Mellor, Sight and Sound, vol 17 issue 11

About the Author

John Mundy is Professor in Media in the School of Media, Music and Performance at the University of Salford

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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Waste Of Time 11 Dec 2007
By Wingate
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
There is a good book to be written about the British musical film but this is not it.It starts off promisingly enough in the first chapter.This focuses on music in the cinema before the advent of sound.However after that it is all downhill.The book is poorly researched and full of errors.The worst of which is that he states that"Leslie Howard" appeared in "Brief Encounters".I will spare the author's blushes by not listing them all out here.He sees social significamce and sub texts in every George Formby,Gracie Fields or Crazy Gang film that has been made.The text is impeneterable and in a style beloved of academics and authors of articles in "Sight and Sound"(no wonder they approved this book).I literally had to look up dictionaries to find out what he was talking about in using such words as diegesic.I was totally bored by page 180.The author fails to communicate anything to this reader and this in my view is a cardinal sin.Buy my copy to find out for yourself.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Proof-reading? 11 July 2014
I was disappointed with the number of errors in spellings of names etc in this book. Jesse Matthews, Cecily Courtneidge, Dennis Lotus, Emeric Pressberger, Denis Price (although his name is spelt correctly in the index!). Needs better proof-reading.
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