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Lindsay Anderson's View of British Class and Society - Essay Example

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Lindsay Anderson’s View of British Class and society Name: Institution: LINDSAY ANDERSON’S VIEW OF BRITISH CLASS AND SOCIETY Lindsay Anderson was an Indian born Briton born on April the 17th 1923. He was a film critic, documentary, feature film and theatre director, and a pioneer of the British New Wave and Free Cinema movement…
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Lindsay Andersons View of British Class and Society
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Download file to see previous pages He later became a film critic for the Sequence Magazine co-founded with his long life friends Karl Reisz and Gavin Lambert. He later wrote for Sight and Sound, a journal for the British Film Institute and the New Statesman, a left wing weekly. He lashed at contemporary critics and their objectivity pursuit in one article for Sights and Sounds. Anderson went on to develop a philosophy concerning cinema, which was christened the Free Cinema movement in the latter part of the 1950s. This philosophy held that cinema in Britain needed to break off from the class-bound attitudes it projected and that the national screens needed to be adorned with stories of non-metropolitan Britain. This paper seeks to examine three of Anderson’s films: “If...”, “O, Lucky Man”, and “Britannia hospital” and the view of British class and society that they provided. The use of the word new wave to describe cultural phenomena is a vital metaphor that when extended and scrutinised further allows one to picture the deep up currents and swellings that formed the wave (Allon, 2007 p7). These films challenged the old norms and were driven by an amalgam of social-democratic and liberal sentiments, which can ironically be viewed as a portion of the success of the economic boom in Britain that allowed the era’s youth to dream, in relatively secure economic mind-frames, about futures other than those that had been held as the norm. Perhaps a perfect example is If…, which came at the tail-end of the New Wave’s phase of social realism and had a nature that was ambiguous in both its recognition of a rapidly changing and expanding British future and its style, both in technique and theme. After his vital role in the Free Cinema movement development, he was involved integrally in the social realist filmmaking of the British New Wave (Anderson et al, 2007 p45). His movie This Sporting Life, based on flashbacks, was viewed as having too much intensity and purely naturalistic. In 1968, Anderson made If…, which exceeded the success of Sporting Life. This was the 1st and most successful film of the loose trilogy that included Oh Lucky Man and Britannia Hospital. While the last two were not as successful as the If, they are considered as films of their era. Anderson worked the script for if with David Sherwin, which was co-produced by Michael Medwin and the director. It was set in a great public school in Britain, where the ruling class of Britain traditionally schooled their sons in the use of power (Hedling, 2008 p32). The script attracted Anderson for its projection of schools as a microcosm, especially, in Britain where social system was mirrored in its educational system. The film’s photography work was done by Ondricek, with most of the film in black and white. Some of the scenes are in colour though this is done intuitively rather than rationally. The film has eight chapters, some of the chapters being “Resistance”, “Discipline”, and “College House” among others. These chapters are further sib-divided into short scenes (Hedling, 2008 p32). This division was, from the beginning, intended as a device of Brechtian alienation, succinctly reminding the audience that what they were watching was an artificial construct rather than reality. The film aimed at having a powerful objectivity element such as vital in all films targeting understanding. If… ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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