The Films of Mike Leigh is the first critical study of one of the most important and eccentric directors of British independent filmmaking. Although active since 1971, Leigh has only come to the attention of an international audience in the 1990s through films such as Secrets and Lies and Career Girls. Like Robert Altman and John Cassevetes, Leigh works improvisationally, beginning with a small group of actors around whom he builds his films during months of private rehearsal. The script is written during this process. Ray Carney examines Leigh's working method and films in the intellectual and social contexts in which they were created. He argues that Leigh cannot be simply considered within the British realist tradition of Osborne and Loach. All of Leigh's major box office successes, including Naked, Life is Sweet and High Hopes, are analyzed, interpreted, and shown to be among the finest examples of cinema.Read more
- This was the first critical study of Mike Leigh
- Leigh is a filmmaker who generates much interest
- The book offers philosophical consideration of the nature of art film
Reviews & endorsements
'… takes genuine pleasure in the exuberance, wit and intelligence of Leigh's cinema.' Paul Howson, The Times Higher Education Supplement
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- Date Published: August 2000
- format: Paperback
- isbn: 9780521485180
- length: 304 pages
- dimensions: 227 x 152 x 20 mm
- weight: 0.45kg
- contains: 13 b/w illus.
- availability: Available
Table of Contents
Biographical and cultural introduction
Stylistic introduction: living beyond consciousness
1. Bleak Moments: fictitious selves
2. Hard Labour: melting the freezing
3. The Kiss of Death: temporal and spatial truth
4. Nuts in May: defeating easy knowledge
5. Abigail's Party: losing track of who you are
6. Who's Who: we are the hollow men
7. Grown-Ups: in praise of otherness
8. Home Sweet Home: manufactured emotions
9. Meantime: challenging forms of understanding
10. High Hopes: loose relations
11. Life is Sweet: circulation is the law of life
12. Naked: alone in the dark
Epilogue: the feel of life.
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