John Wilson is a B.A. Honours student in the English and Professional Writing program at York University. When he is not pursuing his studies, you can find him at the movies.
Hollywood on Trial
Discuss the political climate that existed in the American entertainment industry in the early 1950s that was exploited by Senator Joseph McCarthy and the House In-American Activities Committee (HUAC), and ramifications of the committee’s investigations.
Claude Chabrol: Father of the Nouvelle Vague
Sometimes called the "French Hitchcock" — a term also applied to Henri-Georges Clouzot — Chabrol had a propensity for the thriller genre, though his style was undeniably more detached than that of Hitchcock. His debut was 1958’s "Le Beau Serge," modelled loosely on Hitch’s memorable "Shadow of a Doubt" (1943). Discuss Chabrol’s career, his films and his legacy on the international filmmaking community.
What's Wrong with This Picture?: The Films of Ed Wood
The Orson Welles of low budgets and poor taste would have turned 91 on October 10. This seems like an appropriate time to examine his films and their impact on other filmmakers — most notably Tim Burton, whose lovingly comedic 1994 biopic starring Johnny Depp brought films like "Plan 9 From Outer Space" and "Glen or Glenda?" back into the popular lexicon.
A Brief History of the Hollywood Blockbluster
This year marks the fortieth anniversary of "Jaws", which during the summer of 1975 kept North American audiences off the beaches and inside movie theatres. For good or ill, that film almost single-handedly revolutionized the way in which mainstream American films are produced and marketed. The anniversary provides an opportunity to explore in depth the artistic merits of the blockbuster film, as well as the ways in which "Jaws" changed the movie business.
The Prevalence of Female Editors in the Film Industry
It may be that the film industry is still dominated by men, but one of the few aspects of movie-making which has always been open to women is editing. This article could delve into why women became so prevalent in the editing room at a time when most women were not even in the workforce, relegated instead to subservient domesticated roles.
This could also examine the influence female film editors have exerted through the decades — encompassing the work of Anne V. Coates (ranging from "Lawrence of Arabia" (1962) to this year’s "Fifty Shades of Grey" and the films of Martin Scorsese’s frequent collaborator Thelma Schoonmaker.
Now You Has Jazz
An examination of the musical movement of jazz as it was depicted on film, ranging from "The Jazz Singer" (1927) to "High Society" (1956) and "Bird" (1988). This could also encompass what jazz music can add to otherwise non-musical films — the Duke Ellington score for "Anatomy of a Murder" might be the best example of this.
MASH versus M*A*S*H
Discuss the wildly divergent tones of the 1970 Robert Altman film and the popular TV series which followed. Analyze the culture that influenced both film and series, and explain why the two turned out so differently.
|Male Protagonists in Hitchcock Films|
|The Importance of Scoring in Films|
|Reviving Hail, Caesar!|
|The History of Film Posters|
|Anatomy of A Murder: The Art of Observation|
|Is Fiddler on the Roof a Tragedy? An Aristotelian Analysis|
|The Glaring Importance of Critics in Filmmaking|
|The Social Relevancy and Enigmatic Messages of "Gilda"|