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    • May 2015
    • 9780231174534
  • 240 Pages
  • 24 b&w

  • Paperback
  • $26.00
  • / £19.00

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    • May 2015
    • 9780231174527
  • 240 Pages
  • 24 b&w

  • Hardcover
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    • May 2015
    • 9780231850780
  • 240 Pages
  • 24 b&w

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Documenting Cityscapes

Urban Change in Contemporary Non-Fiction Film

Iván Villarmea Álvarez

Wallflower Press

While film studies has traditionally treated the presence of the city in film as an urban text operating inside of a cinematic one, this approach has recently evolved into the study of cinema as a technology of place. From this perspective, Documenting Cityscapes explores the way the city has been depicted by nonfiction filmmakers since the late 1970s, paying particular attention to three aesthetic tendencies: documentary landscaping, urban self-portraits, and metafilmic strategies.

Through the formal analysis of fifteen works from six different countries, this volume investigates how the rise of subjectivity has helped to develop a kind of gaze that is closer to citizens than to the institutions and corporations responsible for recent major transformations. Documenting Cityscapes therefore reveals the extent to which cinema has become an agent of urban change, in which certain films not only challenge the most controversial policies of late capitalism but also are able to produce spatiality themselves.

About the Author

Iván Villarmea Álvarez is a film critic and researcher who specializes in the representation of the city in film. He coedits the online film journal A Cuarta Parede and is the coeditor of the volume Jugar con la memoria. El cine Portugués en el siglo XXI.

"This carefully researched book explores the ways in which non-fiction filmmaking since the 1970s has archived and illuminated dramatic transformations taking place in urban centres worldwide and their repercussions for social relations, class divisions, and negotiations between the regional and national, the urban and suburban. It approaches the documentary mode as a technology whose social and political interventions engage not only the world at large but also bring authorial subjectivity into focus, revealing topographies of the city inextricable from those of the medial self." — Angelica Fenner, University of Toronto

"Starting with the French concept of dispositif, or film device, this wonderfully written volume unfolds an intelligent categorization on how non-fiction film has portrayed cityscapes since the early 1970s. Refreshing and generous in its case studies, this book will be a landmark for all students of film and urban studies." — Josetxo Cerdan, Carlos III de Madrid University

About the Author

Iván Villarmea Álvarez is a film critic and researcher who specializes in the representation of the city in film. He coedits the online film journal A Cuarta Parede and is the coeditor of the volume Jugar con la memoria. El cine Portugués en el siglo XXI.

Acknowledgements
Introduction: Place, Images, and Meanings
1. On City and Cinema
2. Documentary Film at the Turn of the Century
Part 1. Landscaping
3. Observational Landscaping
4. Psychogeographical Landscaping
5. Autobiographical Landscaping
Part 2. Urban Self-Portraits
6. Self-Portrait as Socio-Political Documentary
7. Self-Portrait as Essay Film
8. Self-Portrait as Self-Fiction
Part 3. Metafilmic Strategies
9. Inside Hollywood Film
Conclusion: Cinema as Agent of Urban Change
Appendix
Bibliography
Index

About the Author

Iván Villarmea Álvarez is a film critic and researcher who specializes in the representation of the city in film. He coedits the online film journal A Cuarta Parede and is the coeditor of the volume Jugar con la memoria. El cine Portugués en el siglo XXI.

About the Author

Iván Villarmea Álvarez is a film critic and researcher who specializes in the representation of the city in film. He coedits the online film journal A Cuarta Parede and is the coeditor of the volume Jugar con la memoria. El cine Portugués en el siglo XXI.

About the Author

Iván Villarmea Álvarez is a film critic and researcher who specializes in the representation of the city in film. He coedits the online film journal A Cuarta Parede and is the coeditor of the volume Jugar con la memoria. El cine Portugués en el siglo XXI.

About the Author

Iván Villarmea Álvarez is a film critic and researcher who specializes in the representation of the city in film. He coedits the online film journal A Cuarta Parede and is the coeditor of the volume Jugar con la memoria. El cine Portugués en el siglo XXI.