1. In a sense, there were two decades going on during the 1960’s. The generation that fought WWII with careers and families (most with teenage children) and the Baby Boomers (teens and college-age young people). The film industry and the changes to it are deeply divided in this schism. On the one hand, musicals (Sound of Music), World War II war films (The Great Escape) and historical epics (Dr. Zhivago) drove the adult market. Rebellion, sex and individual-minded heroes drove the youth market (Easy Rider, Bonnie and Clyde, The Graduate.) By the end of the decade, the tastes of the counter-culture youth had won. Anti-war film (Catch-22), flawed characters as heroes (The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly) and sexual issues (Midnight Cowboy, Butterfield 8, Valley of the Dolls) dominated the screen.
Question a: What are some of the benefits of the Boomer generation’s rebellion and changes to Hollywood in the 1960s?
Question b: What are some of the drawbacks of having film dominated by the demands of an audience that was under the age of 25?
2. The hand-held camera revolutionized the documentary. The camera put you face to face with real people, real action, happening in real time; unlike the studio documentaries of the 1950s and earlier. Direct Cinema, however, begins to show us that as long as there is a director, anything on film will always be from a certain point of view.
Question c: Explain in your own words how Direct Cinema explores â€œtruth.â€
3. Globalization has certainly shaken up some ancient societies in the world. Film has been a huge influence on social change. Itâ€™s easy for Americans to note the influence Hollywood has had on, say, Europe, the Middle East, or Asia, but Bollywood and Chinese film frequently outsell American films, and most formerly American studios (like Paramount and MGM) are actually part of multi-national corporations now.
Question d: How has globalization changed American film? Think of the subjects of American films in the 1950s through 1980s. Think of the blockbusters today. In what ways have you noticed the world market has changed Hollywood?