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A Companion to Fritz Lang

Joe McElhaney (Editor)
ISBN: 978-1-118-58723-2
624 pages
December 2014, Wiley-Blackwell
A Companion to Fritz Lang (1118587235) cover image

Description

This collection of critical essays offers an unrivalled and up-to-the-minute assessment of the prolific and resilient life and vision of one of cinema’s greatest auteurs.

  • The first edited collection of essays on Fritz Lang’s body of work in over thirty years
  • A comprehensive assessment of one of cinema’s most influential figures
  • Brings together key scholars, including Tom Gunning and Chris Fujiwara, to share their latest insights
  • Features translated contributions from writers rarely rendered in English such as Nicole Brenez and Paolo Berletto
  • Offers multinational and multi-perspectival analysis of Lang’s oeuvre, including all his key films
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Table of Contents

Contributors viii

Acknowledgments xiv

1 Introduction 1
Joe McElhaney

Part One Looking, Power, Interpretation 31

2 Why Lang Could Become Preferable to Hitchcock 33
Raymond Bellour

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

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

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

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

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

Part Two Myths, Legends, and Tragic Visions 139

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

9 Beyond a Reasonable Doubt and the Caesura 161
Chris Fujiwara

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

11 Redemption of Revenge: Die Nibelungen 195
Steve Choe

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

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

Part Three Matters of Form 257

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

21 Metropolis and the Figuration of Eidos 392
Paolo Bertetto

Part Four Rediscoveries and Returns 413

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

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

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

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

26 The Limit: House by the River 494
Adrian Martin

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

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

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

Index 587

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Author Information

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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Reviews


Review request 5/6/2013 - Katinka Klaas -  MEDIEN wissenschaft

US reviews:
Cineaste
Film Comment
Canadian Journal of Film Studies
Cineaction
Film Quarterly
Quarterly Review of Film and Video
Literature/Film Quarterly
Velvet Light Trap
Bright Lights Film Journal
Cinemascope

UK reviews:
Sight and Sound
Screening the Past
Senses of Cinema
Quarterly Review of Film Studies
Screen
Positif
Cahiers du Cinèma
Framework
Filmkrant
Film International

“From silent cinema to the sound film, from early film to new waves in art cinema, from Weimar to emigré Paris to Hollywood, and across genres from the Western to the adventure story to the epic to the spy tale to film noir, Fritz Lang's movie-making spans a major part of the history of cinema.  With smartness and sharpness, the essays in this essential volume come from many angles to capture the richness of Lang's cinema and bring great insight to its study.”

Dana Polan, Cinema Studies, NYU

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