Woody Guthrie, Warts-and-All: The Biopic in the New American Cinema of the 1970s

Woody Guthrie, Warts-and-All: The Biopic in the New American Cinema of the 1970s By Dennis Bingham If you want to make a Woody Guthrie movie that is solidly commercial, you have to have somebody kill him in the end. --Hal Ashby New hollywood CiNema (1967 to roughly 1976) is the most common name given to a cycle of inventive, risk-taking, modernist, and revisionist American films, with innovation to match that of any national cinema's "new wave."1 Studio System Hollywood had been gradually crumbling since the late 1940s, but its final collapse came at the end of the 1960s, as unexpected youth-powered hits-- Bonnie and Clyde (1967), The Graduate (1967), Easy Rider (1969), M*A*S*H (1970)--coincided with expensive, ruinous musicals and war epics--Doctor Dolittle (1967), Paint Your Wagon (1969), Tora, Tora, Tora (1970)--creating a chaotic yet fertile environment. The demise of the Motion Picture Production Code brought about a "New Freedom of the Screen." The studios, most of which had been sold to non-show-business conglomerates, possessed little sense of what young audiences, formed in the crucible of social upheaval, wanted to see. They turned to new directors, not all of whom were "movie brats" like Francis Ford Coppola, George Lucas, Martin Scorsese, and Steven Spielberg. A few were older journeymen such as Robert http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png a/b: Auto/Biography Studies Autobiography Society, Inc.

Woody Guthrie, Warts-and-All: The Biopic in the New American Cinema of the 1970s

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Publisher
Autobiography Society, Inc.
Copyright
Copyright © Autobiography Society, Inc.
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2151-7290
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Abstract

By Dennis Bingham If you want to make a Woody Guthrie movie that is solidly commercial, you have to have somebody kill him in the end. --Hal Ashby New hollywood CiNema (1967 to roughly 1976) is the most common name given to a cycle of inventive, risk-taking, modernist, and revisionist American films, with innovation to match that of any national cinema's "new wave."1 Studio System Hollywood had been gradually crumbling since the late 1940s, but its final collapse came at the end of the 1960s, as unexpected youth-powered hits-- Bonnie and Clyde (1967), The Graduate (1967), Easy Rider (1969), M*A*S*H (1970)--coincided with expensive, ruinous musicals and war epics--Doctor Dolittle (1967), Paint Your Wagon (1969), Tora, Tora, Tora (1970)--creating a chaotic yet fertile environment. The demise of the Motion Picture Production Code brought about a "New Freedom of the Screen." The studios, most of which had been sold to non-show-business conglomerates, possessed little sense of what young audiences, formed in the crucible of social upheaval, wanted to see. They turned to new directors, not all of whom were "movie brats" like Francis Ford Coppola, George Lucas, Martin Scorsese, and Steven Spielberg. A few were older journeymen such as Robert

Journal

a/b: Auto/Biography StudiesAutobiography Society, Inc.

Published: May 5, 2011

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