A Companion to Fritz Lang. Wiley Blackwell Companions to Film Directors

  • ID: 2505203
  • Book
  • 624 Pages
  • John Wiley and Sons Ltd
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Fritz Lang′s influence on cinema cannot be overstated, with a career that stretched from the silent era in Germany to the decline of the Hollywood studio system in the late 1950s, from the Weimar Republic to Nazi Germany, from Depression America to the McCarthy era. One of the best known émigrés from Germany′s school of Expressionism, Lang is also credited with influencing the emergence of film noir.

A Companion to Fritz Lang offers the first full–scale collection of scholarship available in English on one of the most important filmmakers of all time. Addressing much of Lang s voluminous body of work, from Metropolis and M, to lesser–known titles such as Western Union and Clash by Night, this volume offers a superb overview of Lang s cinema and revealing insights into his enduring influence on directors such as Godard, Scorsese, Chabrol, and Tarantino. The two dozen essays presented here offer an unrivalled and up–to–the–minute assessment of the prolific and resilient life and vision of one of cinema s greatest auteurs.

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Contributors viii

Acknowledgments xiv

1 Introduction 1Joe McElhaney

Part One Looking, Power, Interpretation 31

2 Why Lang Could Become Preferable to Hitchcock 33Raymond Bellour

3 While Not Looking: The Failure to See and Know in Dr. Mabuse, der Spieler and The Testament of Dr. Mabuse 43Frances Guerin

4 Symptom, Exhibition, Fear: Representations of Terror in the German Work of Fritz Lang 63Nicole Brenez

5 Spies: Postwar Paranoia Goes to the Movies 76Paul Dobryden

6 Identifying the Suspect: Lang s M and the Trajectories of Film Criticism 94Olga Solovieva

7 The Medium s Re–Vision: (Or the Doctor as Disease, Diagnostic, and Cure) 114David Phelps

Part Two Myths, Legends, and Tragic Visions 139

8 Metaphysics of Finitude: Der müde Tod and the Crisis of Historicism 141Nicholas Baer

9 Beyond a Reasonable Doubt and the Caesura 161Chris Fujiwara

10 Lang contra Wagner: Die Nibelungen as Anti–Adaptation 176Thomas Leitch

11 Redemption of Revenge: Die Nibelungen 195Steve Choe

12 Furious Union: Fritz Lang and the American West 219Phil Wagner

13 It Was a Horserace Sorta : Fortunes of Rancho Notorious 242Tom Conley

Part Three Matters of Form 257

14 Beyond Destiny and Design: Camera Movement in Fritz Lang s German Films 259Daniel Morgan

15 Fritz Lang: Object and Thing in the German Films 279Brigitte Peucker

16 A Stranger in the House: Fritz Lang s Fury and the Cinema of Exile 300Anton Kaes

17 Fritz Lang s Modern Character: You Only Live Once and the Depth of Surface 322Will Scheibel

18 Joan Bennett, Fritz Lang, and the Frame of Performance 340Steven Rybin

19 I d Like to Own That Painting : Lang, Cézanne, and the Art of Omission 358Vinzenz Hediger

20 Tumbling Blocks and Queer Ladders: Notions of Home in The Big Heat 371Pamela Robertson Wojcik

21 Metropolis and the Figuration of Eidos 392Paolo Bertetto

Part Four Rediscoveries and Returns 413

22 Not the End: Fritz Lang s War 415Lutz Koepnick

23 Classic(al) Lang: Conflicting Impulses in Ministry of Fear 430Jakob Isak Nielsen

24 Multiple Reflections: The Woman in the Mirror in Fritz Lang s Cloak and Dagger 458Doug Dibbern

25 Suspended Modernity: On the Last Five Films of Fritz Lang 474Carlos Losilla

26 The Limit: House by the River 494Adrian Martin

27 Looking for a Path: Fritz Lang and Clash by Night 514Joe McElhaney

28 Notes on Human Desire (Lang, Renoir, Zola) 536Sam Ishii–Gonzales

29 Lunar Longings and Rocket Fever: Rediscovering Woman in the Moon 554Tom Gunning and Katharina Loew

Index 587

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Joe McElhaney is Professor of Film Studies at Hunter College, City University of New York, USA, as well as in the Theater Program at CUNY s Graduate Center. A seasoned commentator on film, media, and the arts, Prof McElhaney is author of The Death of Classical Cinema: Hitchcock, Lang, Minnelli (2006), Albert Maysles (2009), and editor of Vincente Minnelli: The Art of Entertainment (2009).

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