The family unit has been a central theme in movies since the
earliest days of the medium-- whether as a locus of domestic bliss,
a dysfunctional source of drama, a collection of comic
personalities or an inferno of repressed feelings. This new
anthology brings the subject into sharp focus, collecting a range
of multidisciplinary perspectives that attempt to directly
penetrate the questions raised by the role of the family onscreen.
Discussing a wide range of contemporary and classic films, from
"House of Strangers" (1949) and "Mary Poppins" (1964) to
"Superstar" (1987), "The Royal Tenenbaums" (2001) and "Brokeback
Mountain" (2005), this study addresses the nature of family values
in cinema, and the 'family' nature of the Hollywood production
system itself. With a wealth of historical background and
contemporary analysis, this volume is a penetrating view of the
oldest and most influential social institution as imagined for the
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