In China on Screen, Chris Berry and Mary Farquhar,
leaders in the field of Chinese film studies, explore more than one
hundred years of Chinese cinema and nation. Providing new
perspectives on key movements, themes, and filmmakers, Berry and
Farquhar analyze the films of a variety of directors and actors,
including Chen Kaige, Zhang Yimou, Hou Hsiao Hsien, Bruce Lee,
Jackie Chan, Maggie Cheung, Gong Li, Wong Kar-wai, and Ang Lee.
They argue for the abandonment of "national cinema" as an analytic
tool and propose "cinema and the national" as a more productive
framework. With this approach, they show how movies from China,
Hong Kong, Taiwan, and the Chinese diaspora construct and contest
different ideas of Chinese nation -- as empire, republic, or
ethnicity, and complicated by gender, class, style,
transnationalism, and more. Among the issues and themes covered are
the tension between operatic and realist modes, male and female
star images, transnational production and circulation of Chinese
films, the image of the good foreigner -- all related to different
ways of imagining nation. Comprehensive and provocative, China
on Screen is a crucial work of film analysis.
Subjects: Film Studies, History
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