Uncanny Bodies The Coming of Sound Film and the Origins of the Horror Genre

ISBN-10: 0520251229

ISBN-13: 9780520251229

Edition: 2007

Authors: Robert Spadoni

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Description:

In 1931 Universal Pictures releasedDraculaandFrankenstein,two films that inaugurated the horror genre in Hollywood cinema. These films appeared directly on the heels of Hollywood's transition to sound film. Uncanny Bodies argues that the coming of sound inspired more in these massively influential horror movies than screams, creaking doors, and howling wolves. A close examination of the historical reception of films of the transition period reveals that sound films could seem to their earliest viewers unreal and ghostly. By comparing this audience impression to the first sound horror films, Robert Spadoni makes a case for understanding film viewing as a force that can powerfully shape both the minutest aspects of individual films and the broadest sweep of film production trends, and for seeing aftereffects of the temporary weirdness of sound film deeply etched in the basic character of one of our most enduring film genres.
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Book details

List price: $34.95
Copyright year: 2007
Publisher: University of California Press
Publication date: 9/4/2007
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 202
Size: 6.00" wide x 9.00" long x 0.75" tall
Weight: 0.792
Language: English

Acknowledgments
Introduction
The Uncanny Body of Early Sound Film
The Shrinking of Personality
The Return of the Medium-Sensitive Viewer
The Complexion of the Thing
Shadows in Three Dimensions
A Modality
Ludicrous Objects, Textualized Responses
Films as Mirrors of Viewer Response
The Hollywood Revue of 1929
Two Ventriloquism Films
Svengali
The Mystery of Dracula
Real Emotional Horror Kick
The Mystery of Dracula?
The Vampire's Hiss and the Madman's Laugh
Dracula as Uncanny Theater
Figure
Ground
Frankenstein and the Vats of Hollywood
Strong Meat and Monster Food
Frankenstein and the Uncanny of Early Sound Film
Frankenstein and the Uncanny of Silent Film
From Modality to Monad
Conclusion
Notes
Bibliography
Films Cited
Index
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