Reel Power

Reel Power : Hollywood Cinema and American Supremacy

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Hollywood is often characterised as a stronghold of left-liberal ideals. In Reel Power, Matthew Alford shows that it is in fact deeply complicit in serving the interests of the most regressive US corporate and political forces. Films like Transformers, Terminator: Salvation and Black Hawk Down are constructed with Defence Department assistance as explicit cheerleaders for the US military, but Matthew Alford also emphasises how so-called 'radical' films like Three Kings, Hotel Rwanda and Avatar present watered-down alternative visions of American politics that serve a similar function. Reel Power is the first book to examine the internal workings of contemporary Hollywood as a politicised industry as well as scores of films across all genres. No matter what the progressive impulses of some celebrities and artists, Alford shows how they are part of a system that is hard-wired to encourage American global supremacy and frequently the use of state more

Product details

  • Hardback | 232 pages
  • 137.16 x 218.44 x 17.78mm | 362.87g
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 0745329837
  • 9780745329833

Review quote

This is a very timely book. The Hollywood myth is that its films are just 'entertainment'. Far from it. The author shows that American industrial cinema propagates ideas favourable to its right wing establishment. Read this book before you see the next blockbuster. -- Ken Loach Formidable... absolutely fascinating. -- Tony Benn a laudable study ... an eye opening expose ... you'll watch the next gung-ho blockbuster a little closer. -- Total Film American society has seen the increasing convergence of politics and culture. ... In taking up the crucial role of Hollywood cinema in this context, Matthew Alford makes an outstanding contribution to the literature on media and popular culture. -- Carl Boggs, co-author, The Hollywood War Machine, and author, The Crimes of Empire (Pluto, 2010) Reel Power is a powerful indictment of Hollywood's hidden foreign policy. It was a real eye-opener even for me, a long-time critic of the cosy relationship between Hollywood and the Pentagon. -- David Robb, investigative journalist and author of Operation Hollywood: How the Pentagon Shapes and Censors the Movies (2004). 'Well written, well researched, and deals with a less than palatable subject matter' -- Tom Rolf, Editor on Jacob's Ladder and Co-Editor on Heat and Taxi Driver This pithy and engaging book puts the Hollywood menu under the microscope. Far from being thorns in the side of the establishment, Alford finds Hollywood at best serves up comfort food: narrative constructions fail to throw light on the systemic abuses of power so prevalent under western orthodoxy. A must-read for film buff and scholar alike. -- Alison Edgley, author of The Social and Political Thought of Noam Chomsky (2000) A must read when researching Hollywood! -- Michael Sands, Los Angeles celebrity media consultant No nonsense; excellent structure and outstanding research -- Jack Shaheen, author of Reel Bad Arabs Really exciting... terrific on many levels -- Haskell Wexlershow more

About Matthew Alford

Matthew Alford has written for the Guardian, New Statesman and BBC radio. He has also lectured at the Universities of Bath and more

Table of contents

PART ONE: CONTROLLING THE DREAM FACTORY 1 Hollywood Screened 2 Hollywood Deactivated PART TWO: POWER PROJECTED 3 War Films 4 Comedies 5 Action Adventure 6 Science Fiction 7 Political Drama 8 The Low Budget Battlefield PART THREE: REEL VIOLENCE 9 Conclusions Endnotes Filmography Indexshow more

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