Hidden in Plain Sight Pdf

Hidden in Plain Sight

Number of page: 248
Author: Colin Williamson
Publisher: Rutgers University Press
ISBN: 9780813572550
Category: Performing Arts

What does it mean to describe cinematic effects as “movie magic,” to compare filmmakers to magicians, or to say that the cinema is all a “trick”
The heyday of stage illusionism was over a century ago, so why do such performances still serve as a key reference point for understanding filmmaking, especially now that so much of the cinema rests on the use of computers
  To answer these questions, Colin Williamson situates film within a long tradition of magical practices that combine art and science, involve deception and discovery, and evoke two forms of wonder—both awe at the illusion displayed and curiosity about how it was performed. He thus considers how, even as they mystify audiences, cinematic illusions also inspire them to learn more about the technologies and techniques behind moving images. Tracing the overlaps between the worlds of magic and filmmaking, Hidden in Plain Sight examines how professional illusionists and their tricks have been represented onscreen, while also considering stage magicians who have stepped behind the camera, from Georges Méliès to Ricky Jay.   Williamson offers an insightful, wide-ranging investigation of how the cinema has functioned as a “device of wonder” for more than a century, while also exploring how several key filmmakers, from Orson Welles to Christopher Nolan and Martin Scorsese, employ the rhetoric of magic. Examining pre-cinematic visual culture, animation, nonfiction film, and the digital trickery of today’s CGI spectacles, Hidden in Plain Sight provides an eye-opening look at the powerful ways that magic has shaped our modes of perception and our experiences of the cinema. 

Preview pages:
  • preview 1
  • preview 2
  • preview 3
  • preview 4

About The Author

COLIN WILLIAMSON is a visiting assistant professor of film and media studies at Franklin and Marshall College, Lancaster, Pennsylvania.

Similar books:
  • Image and Territory: Essays on Atom Egoyan

    Image and Territory: Essays on Atom Egoyan
    In a culture that often understands formal experimentation or theoretical argument to be antithetical to pleasure Atom Egoyan has nevertheless consistently appealed to wide audiences around the world If films like The Adjuster Calendar Exotica and The Sweet Hereafter have ensured him international cult status as one of the most revered of all contemporary directors Egoyan s forays into installation art and opera have provided evidence of his versatility and confirmed his talents Image and Territory Essays on Atom Egoyan is both scholarly and accessible Indispensable for the scholar student and fan this collection of new essays and interviews from leading film and media scholars unpacks the central arguments tensions and paradoxes of his work and traces their evolution It also locates his work within larger intellectual and artistic currents in order to consider how he takes up and answers critical debates in politics philosophy and aesthetics Most importantly it addresses how his work is both intellectually engaging and emotionally moving

  • Theorizing Bruce Lee: Film-fantasy-fighting-philosophy

    Theorizing Bruce Lee: Film-fantasy-fighting-philosophy
    Bruce Lee is a complex and contradictory figure and it s a formidable task to take on the multiple facets of his legacyûfighter film star philosopher nationalist multiculturalist innovator With an approach as multidisciplinary and iconoclastic as Lee s approach to martial arts Bowman provides an original and exhilarating account of Lee as cultural event No one has done a better job of explaining why the martial arts legend remains such an important and provocative figure ûLeon Hunt Brunel University author of Kung Fu Cult Masters From Bruce Lee to Crouching Tiger Taking on Martin Heidegger and Slavoj ÄiPek as well as drawing on Jacques Derrida Michel Foucault Guy Debord Jacques RanciFre Rey Chow and Stuart Hall among others Bowman shows how Bruce Lee speaks to the philosophical debates that frame our understanding of global popular culture today Although Bowman may not be able to resolve the philosophical battles surrounding our ability to know Bruce Lee he does a remarkable job of articulating why Bruce Lee remains an essential force within not only world cinema but global culture û both high and low Armoured with his philosophical nunchakus Bowman goes to battle with anyone who may doubt Lee s ongoing importance and this book will undoubtedly become essential reading for everyone from philosopher to kung fu practitioner interested in popular culture and Asian cinema ûGina Marchetti University of Hong Kong author of Romance and the Yellow Peril Race Sex and Discursive Strategies in Hollywood Fiction and From Tian anmen to Times Square Transnational China and the Chinese Diaspora on Global Screens 1989 1997 Theorizing Bruce Lee is a unique work which uses cultural theory to analyse and assess Bruce Lee and uses Bruce Lee to analyse and assess cultural theory Lee is shown to be a major event in both global film and global popular culture û a figure who is central to many intercultural encounters texts and practices Many key elements of film and cultural theory are employed to theorize Bruce Lee and Lee is shown to be a complex û and consequential û multimedia multidisciplinary and multicultural phenomenon Theorizing Bruce Lee is essential reading for anyone interested in Bruce Lee in popular culture and as an object of academic study

  • American Independent: Volume 1

    American Independent: Volume 1
    With high profile Academy Award nominations and an increasing number of big name actors eager to sign on to promising projects independent films have been at the forefront in recent years like never before But the roots of such critical and commercial successes as The Hurt Locker and Precious can be traced to the first boom of independent cinema in the 1960s when a raft of talented filmmakers emergedto capture the attention of a rapidly growing audience of young viewers A thorough overview of a thriving area of cultural life Directory of World Cinema American Independent chronicles the rise of the independent sector as an outlet for directors who challenge the status quo yet still produce accessible feature films that not only find wide audiences but enjoy considerable box office appeal without sacrificing critical legitimacy Key directors are interviewed and profiled and a sizeable selection of films are referenced and reviewed More than a dozen sub genres including African American cinema queer cinema documentary familial dysfunction and exploitation are individually considered with an emphasis on their ability to engage with tensions inherent in American society Copious illustrations and a range of research resources round out the volume making this a truly comprehensive guide At a time when independent films are enjoying considerable cultural cachet this easy to use yet authoritative guide will find an eager audience in media historians film studies scholars and movie buffs alike

  • Hollywood Science: Movies, Science, and the End of the World

    Hollywood Science: Movies, Science, and the End of the World
    Whether depicting humans battling aliens or a brave geologist saving lives as a volcano erupts science fiction films are an exciting visual and sensuous introduction to the workings of science and technology These films explore a range of complex topics in vivid and accessible ways from space travel and laser technology to genetic engineering global warming and the consequences of nuclear weaponry Though actual scientific lab work might not be as exciting science fiction is an engaging yet powerful way for a wide audience to explore some of the most pressing issues and ideas of our time In this book a scientist and dedicated film enthusiast discusses the portrayal of science in more than one hundred films including science fiction scientific biographies and documentaries Beginning with early films like Voyage to the Moon and Metropolis and concluding with more recent offerings like The Matrix War of the Worlds A Beautiful Mind and An Inconvenient Truth Sidney Perkowitz questions how much faith we can put into Hollywood s depiction of scientists and their work how accurately these films capture scientific fact and theory whether cataclysms like our collision with a comet can actually happen and to what extent these films influence public opinion about science and the future Movies especially science fiction films temporarily remove viewers from the world as they know it and show them the world as it might be providing special perspective on human nature and society Yet Hollywood science can be erroneous distorting fact for dramatic effect and stereotyping scientists as remote and nerdy evil or noble doing little to improve the relationship between science and society Bringing together history scientific theory and humorous observation Hollywood Science features dozens of film stills and a list of the all time best and worst science fiction movies Just as this genre appeals to all types of viewers this book will resonate with anyone who has been inspired by science fiction films and would like to learn how fantasy compares to fact