+353-1-416-8900REST OF WORLD
+44-20-3973-8888REST OF WORLD
1-917-300-0470EAST COAST U.S
1-800-526-8630U.S. (TOLL FREE)


A Companion to the Action Film. Edition No. 1

  • ID: 5226536
  • Book
  • March 2019
  • 512 Pages
  • John Wiley and Sons Ltd

An authoritative guide to the action-packed film genre

With 24 incisive, cutting-edge contributions from esteemed scholars and critics, A Companion to the Action Filmprovides an authoritative and in-depth guide to this internationally popular and wide-ranging genre. As the first major anthology on the action film in more than a decade, the volume offers insights into the genre’s historical development, explores its production techniques and visual poetics, and provides reflections on the numerous social, cultural, and political issues it has and continues to embody.

A Companion to the Action Film offers original research and critical analysis that examines the iconic characteristics of the genre, its visual aesthetics, and its narrative traits; considers the impact of major directors and stars on the genre’s evolution; puts the action film in dialogue with various technologies and other forms of media such as graphic novels and television; and maps out new avenues of critical study for the future. This important resource: 

  • Offers a definitive guide to the action film
  • Contains insightful contributions from a wide range of international film experts and scholars
  • Reviews the evolution of the genre from the silent era to today’s age of digital blockbusters
  • Offers nuanced commentary and analysis of socio-cultural issues such as race, nationality, and gender in action films

Written for scholars, teachers and students in film studies, film theory, film history, genre studies, and popular culture, A Companion to the Action Film is an essential guide to one of international cinema’s most important, popular, and influential genres.

Note: Product cover images may vary from those shown

About the Editor viii

Notes on Contributors ix

Acknowledgments xiii

Introduction: The Action Film: “Over Familiar and Understudied” 1
James Kendrick

Part I History 9

1 Origins of the Action Film: Types, Tropes, and Techniques in Early Film History 11
Kyle Barrowman

2 A Genre of Its Own: From Westerns, to Vigilantes, to Pure Action 35
James Kendrick

3 The New Dominance: Action‐Fantasy Hybrids and the New Superhero in 2000s Action Cinema 55
Lisa Purse

4 Around the World in Action 74
Mark Gallagher

Part II Form and Aesthetics 97

5 The Perpetual Motion Aesthetic of Action Cinema 99
Nick Jones

6 Asian Action Cinema and Its Influence on Hollywood 118
Barna William Donovan

7 Comedy in Action 140
Cynthia M. King

8 The Composite Body: Action Stars and Embodiment in the Digital Age 165
Drew Ayers

9 Translating the Panel: Remediating a Comics Aesthetic in Contemporary Action Cinema 187
Joshua Wucher

Part III Auteurs: Directors, Stars, Choreographers 207

10 Akira Kurosawa, Sam Peckinpah, and the Action Concept of Eastern Westerns 209
Stephen Teo

11 The Martial Arts Supremacy: Action Film and Fight Choreography 227
Paul Bowman

12 All Guts and No Glory: Stuntwork and Stunt Performers in Hollywood History 241
Lauren Steimer

13 Hollywood’s Hard Bodies: The Stars Who Made the Action Films Famous 256
Susan Jeffords

14 The Strange Case of Carlos Ray Norris: Reactionary Masculinity and Its Imaginary Discontents 270
Tony Williams

15 New Action Realism: Claustrophobia, Immediacy, and Mediation in the Films of Kathryn Bigelow, Paul Greengrass, and Michael Mann 289
Vincent M. Gaine

Part IV Social and Cultural Issues 307

16 Postmodernism in Action Movies 309
Micheal McAlexander

17 The 1980s Action Film and the Politics of Urban Expulsions 325
Jon Kraszewski

18 Infinite Crisis: Intertextuality and Watchmen 345
Matt Yockey

19 Blowing Up the War Film: Powerlessness and the Crisis of the Action‐Image in The Hurt Locker and Inglourious Basterds 364
Paul Gormley

20 X‐Men/Action Men: Performing Masculinities in Superhero and Science‐Fiction Cinema 381
Yvonne Tasker

21 Unlikely Action Heroine: Melissa McCarthy Challenges Bodily Ideals in Modern Action Film 398
Jeffrey A. Brown

22 “I Am Become Death”: Managing Massacres and Constructing the Female Teen Leader in The 100 417
Rikke Schubart

23 A Digital Nature: Lucy Takes Technology for a Ride 439
Lorrie Palmer

24 “I Feel the Need, the Need for Speed”: Prosthetics, Agency Panic, and the High‐Tech Action Film 456
Steffen Hantke

Index 473

Note: Product cover images may vary from those shown
James Kendrick
Note: Product cover images may vary from those shown