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Article
Publication date: 5 September 2017

Siu Keung Cheung and Wing Sang Law

The majority of Hong Kong filmmakers have pursued co-production with China filmmakers for having the Mainland market at the expense of local styles and sensitivities. To…

Abstract

Purpose

The majority of Hong Kong filmmakers have pursued co-production with China filmmakers for having the Mainland market at the expense of local styles and sensitivities. To many critics, the two-part series of Ip Man and Ip Man II provide a paradigmatic case of film co-production that sell the tricks of Chinese kung fu, regurgitating the overblown Chinese nationalism against Japanese and kwai-lo. The purpose of this study is to rectify such observation of the Ip Man series.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors read the series deconstructively as a postcolonial text in which Hong Kong identity is inscribed in the negotiated space in between different versions of Chinese nationalism.

Findings

The analysis points to the varying subversive features in the series from which Hong Kong’s colonial experiences are tacitly displayed, endorsed and rewritten into the Chinese nationalistic discourse whose dominance is questioned, if not debased.

Originality/value

This paper advances new research insights into the postcolonial reinvention of kung fu film and, by implication, the Hong Kong cinema in general.

Details

Social Transformations in Chinese Societies, vol. 13 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1871-2673

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Article
Publication date: 5 September 2017

Siu Keung Cheung

This paper aims to challenge the longstanding cosmopolitan interpretation of Hong Kong, particularly why this global city fails to absorb China equally through its great…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to challenge the longstanding cosmopolitan interpretation of Hong Kong, particularly why this global city fails to absorb China equally through its great inclusiveness and flexibility as before. On the contrary, rising tensions, conflicts and resistance could be founded between Hong Kong and China these days.

Design/methodology/approach

By using Hong Kong cinema as an analytical lens, this paper seeks to throw light on the cinematic landscape of post-1997 Hong Kong and, by implications, the overall destiny of postcolonial Hong Kong under Chinese rule.

Findings

The postcolonial Hong Kong, although lacking a symmetric status and equal weight, remains an active player with Chinese hegemony that appeals to the newfound market power to consolidate their systemic control on the city. By acting upon itself with the subjectivity and reflexivity from itself, postcolonial Hong Kong takes many actions to do justice that criticizes the political and ideological correctness and challenges the contemporary national authority from one-party rule.

Originality/value

This paper demonstrates a new in-betweenness in the relation to the making of postcolonial Hong Kong. This paper advances insights into a postcolonial reinvention of the politics of disappearance that remains underexplored.

Details

Social Transformations in Chinese Societies, vol. 13 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1871-2673

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 5 September 2017

Siu Keung Cheung

During the centennial anniversary of Xinhai Revolution in 2011, the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference and the State Administration of Radio, Film, and…

Abstract

Purpose

During the centennial anniversary of Xinhai Revolution in 2011, the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference and the State Administration of Radio, Film, and Television supported the production of 1911 for celebrating such an important event that lead to the rise of the Republic of China in the contemporary Chinese history. This paper aims to reflect upon this film in relation to China’s propagation of “Greater China” for the Empire-building project.

Design/methodology/approach

By scrutinizing the film text and following the strait controversies over the film, this paper demonstrates how the Chinese Communist agents employed the coproduction model with Hong Kong for globalizing a cinematic discourse of Greater China in part of their Empire-building project.

Findings

The study challenges how contemporary Chinese history is ideologically and politically manipulated for advancing the Chinese Communist propaganda over Taiwan. The overall objective is to reflect upon the longstanding historical divergences that stand on the current geopolitical envision and strategy of China for reunification.

Originality/value

This paper provides an interdisciplinary reflection upon the intricate post-Cold War politics in part of the contemporary Chinese cinema under the China–Hong Kong coproduction model. The findings advance novel and timely insights into China’s current envision and strategy for reunification.

Details

Social Transformations in Chinese Societies, vol. 13 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1871-2673

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Book part
Publication date: 9 December 2009

Shulamit Almog

The chapter contends that although Israeli reality is replete with legal issues, very few films deal directly with the law or with a legal process as a central theme…

Abstract

The chapter contends that although Israeli reality is replete with legal issues, very few films deal directly with the law or with a legal process as a central theme. Contemporary Israeli films are not very different from the early Israeli films in their embracement of a national heroic narrative, which typically leaves very little space for legal issues. The chapter demonstrates the absence of law from Israeli cinema by looking closely at war films, which are probably the most popular and influential Israeli films. War films reflect and in the same time participate in the construction of the Israeli collective consciousness, wherein the army experience is central. Tracing the way in which law is presented (or lacks representation) in them may shed light from a new angle on the role of law in shaping social and political norms in Israel.

Details

Studies in Law, Politics and Society
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84950-696-0

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Book part
Publication date: 26 March 2020

Robert Shail

In 1958 the Daily Express began publication of a comic strip adaptation of Casino Royale authorised by Ian Fleming, predating the original film version by four years. For…

Abstract

In 1958 the Daily Express began publication of a comic strip adaptation of Casino Royale authorised by Ian Fleming, predating the original film version by four years. For the next 10 years adaptations of the novels and short stories appeared in the newspaper with Bond’s appearance fashioned firstly by John McLusky and then Yaroslav Horak. When the supply of Fleming’s stories was exhausted, new adventures were penned by Jim Lawrence with artwork by Horak, McLusky or Harry North. From 1977 publication switched to the Sunday Express and then the Daily Star. Eventually, the strips were reprinted for a whole new audience by Titan Books.

Subsequently, Bond appeared in a number of other comic book adaptations and reworkings, including key adaptations by the independent publishers Dark Horse and Dynamite, offering contemporary re-imaginings of this iconic, but always controversial, male icon. Taken together they provide a run of Bond adventures over more than 50 years. As such, they contain an alternative Bond universe, where his embodiment of male heroism mimics and varies Fleming’s original and the images constructed in the film franchise. This chapter will consider these mirror images and their responses to changing societal pressures as Bond adapts to new definitions of what constitutes the male hero.

Details

From Blofeld to Moneypenny: Gender in James Bond
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83867-163-1

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Book part
Publication date: 25 July 2008

John M. Johnson

If military cooks can consistently fuck-up the preparation of refried beans, why would one expect these nincompoops (I have learned to call this institutional rationality…

Abstract

If military cooks can consistently fuck-up the preparation of refried beans, why would one expect these nincompoops (I have learned to call this institutional rationality) to produce efficient killers in 4–6 months of basic training? The answer to this is obvious: they don’t. Before an individual comes into the military, they have been inculcated with celebratory military triumphalism for decades; these teachings come from parents, family members, peers, teachers, professors, history book lies, cinematic lies, mass media lies, religious lies, and a wide range of other cultural lies (see Goode, 1978). These cultural lies tell of the alleged or presumed challenges of outside forces, and of how these unprovoked aggressions are met with the heroic efforts of our own peace loving people. These cultural lies neglect to specify the complete social, economic, and political context, and the extent to which the aggressive acts were a response to other actions which preceded them. For America specifically, they neglect the Christian genocide of the indigenous peoples, and our own long-standing and consistent imperial actions from the Bay of Manila onward. The cultural lies purport to justify blood sacrifice of the young for the short-term hubris and conceits of the political, economic, and religious leaders.

Details

Studies in Symbolic Interaction
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84663-931-9

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Book part
Publication date: 27 September 2014

Susan Burgess

How did gays in the military go from being characterized as dangerous perverts threatening to the state, to victims being persecuted by the state, to potential heroes…

Abstract

How did gays in the military go from being characterized as dangerous perverts threatening to the state, to victims being persecuted by the state, to potential heroes fighting on behalf of the state? What implications does this shift have for understanding the means by which the liberal state uses law to include the previously excluded? Offering a critical account of the inclusion of gays in the military, I argue that while the lifting of the ban can be seen as an important step in a classic civil rights narrative in which the liberal state gradually accommodates the excluded, pop culture allows us also to see state and minority group interest convergence as well as divergence, revealing the costs of inclusion.

Details

Special Issue: Law and the Liberal State
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78441-238-8

Keywords

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Book part
Publication date: 13 March 2019

Niall Brennan

While horror film is hardly new to Latin America, film scholars have largely emphasized the paradigms of socially engaged, ‘serious cinema’ over exploring how genre, cult…

Abstract

While horror film is hardly new to Latin America, film scholars have largely emphasized the paradigms of socially engaged, ‘serious cinema’ over exploring how genre, cult or other transgressive film-making modes have developed in and reflect the region (Tierney, 2014). To characterize Latin American horror, it is typified by the supernatural, which indeed contradicts serious cinema. Since about 2010, however, Latin American film-makers have revisited the ‘abduction’ subgenre of horror film. This chapter analyses three such films – Scherzo Diabolico (García Bogliano, 2015), Luna de Miel (Cohen, 2015) and Sudor Frío (García Bogliano, 2010) – to suggest how their representations of gender and class complicate assumptions about everyday life in the region. The chapter also interrogates how this revived mode of horror film-making reconfigures gender ideologies to challenge the Latin American sociopolitical structures of machismo and patriarchy. By integrating conceptualizations of hybridity with transnational views on horror film-making and Freeland’s (1996) reworked feminist strategy for analysing horror texts, this chapter argues that, in tandem with new means of accessing and viewing Latin American horror globally, we should rethink how the abduction subgenre reflects new realities of Latin American society.

Details

Gender and Contemporary Horror in Film
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78769-898-7

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Book part
Publication date: 26 May 2015

Yvonne D. Newsome

This study compares filmic and televisual representations of fictional black presidents to white Americans’ reactions to the advent of the United States’s first African…

Abstract

Purpose

This study compares filmic and televisual representations of fictional black presidents to white Americans’ reactions to the advent of the United States’s first African American president. My main goal is to determine if there is convergence between these mediated representations and whites’ real-world representations of Barack Obama. I then weigh the evidence for media pundits’ speculations that Obama owes his election to positive portrayals of these fictional heads of state.

Methodology/approach

The film and television analyses examine each black president’s social network, personality, character traits, preparation for office, and leadership ability. I then compare the ideological messages conveyed through these portrayals to the messages implicated in white Americans’ discursive and pictorial representations of Barack Obama.

Findings

Both filmic and televisual narratives and public discourses and images construct and portray black presidents with stereotypical character traits and abilities. These representations are overwhelmingly negative and provide no support for the argument that there is a cause–effect relationship between filmic and televisual black presidents and Obama’s election victory.

Research implications

Neither reel nor real-life black presidents can elude the representational quagmire that distorts African Americans’ abilities and diversity. Discourses, iconography, narratives, and other representations that define black presidents through negative tropes imply that blacks are incapable of effective leadership. These hegemonic representations seek to delegitimize black presidents and symbolically return them to subordinate statuses.

Details

Race in the Age of Obama: Part 2
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78350-982-9

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Book part
Publication date: 13 March 2019

Fernando Gabriel Pagnoni Berns and Diego Foronda

Traditional visions of masculinity are inextricably linked to some tropes believed as ‘essential’ in men such as valour or strength. If a man fails in comply with these…

Abstract

Traditional visions of masculinity are inextricably linked to some tropes believed as ‘essential’ in men such as valour or strength. If a man fails in comply with these ‘essences’, then he fits into a form of deviant masculinity that transforms him into an Other.

Now, what happens with the issues of ageing in masculinity? The ageing man slowly but naturally loses all the aspects that made him ‘manly’ enough, becoming instead a double of himself. Men are doomed to fail as their bodies start to malfunction.

Two horror films highlight ageing and failed masculinity as a way to engage with these new concerns. Bubba Ho-Tep (Don Coscarelli, 2012) and Late Phases (Adrián García Bogliano, 2014) revolves around two aged heroes (Elvis Presley in the former, an ageing war veteran in the latter) who live within retirement communities. There, in the last years of their life, both men must face supernatural menaces: a walking mummy and a werewolf respectively. Facing supernatural horror, the ageing heroes must compensate their failing masculinity – a body that does not work as well as it used to do – with new forms of empathy and manliness.

Uniting film studies with investigations on masculinity and ageing, we propose to read these two films to point the ways in which both stories engage with the cultural politics of ageing masculinity.

Details

Gender and Contemporary Horror in Film
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78769-898-7

Keywords

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