Apocalyptic Visions in 21st Century Films


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About the Book

The apocalypse on the big screen has expanded beyond the familiar end-of-the-world movies. Romantic comedies, teen adventures and even children’s films frequently feature apocalyptic imagery—disintegrating cities, extreme weather events, extinctions, rogue military forces, epidemics, zombie armies and worlds colliding. Using sophisticated CGI effects, filmmakers are depicting the end of the world ever more stunningly. The authors explore the phenomenon of the cinematic apocalypse and its origins in both our anxieties and our real-world events, and they identify some flashes of hope in the desolate landscape.

About the Author(s)

Elizabeth A. Ford is a professor emerita at Westminster College in New Wilmington, Pennsylvania. She lives in Youngstown, Ohio.

Deborah C. Mitchell, a professor of English and film studies at Westminster College, is the author of Diane Keaton: Artist and Icon (McFarland, 2001). She lives in Poland, Ohio.

Bibliographic Details

Elizabeth A. Ford and Deborah C. Mitchell
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 237
Bibliographic Info: 17 photos, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2018
pISBN: 978-1-4766-7273-1
eISBN: 978-1-4766-3139-4
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments vi
Introduction: Dark Themes and Images of Disaster 1
1. Envisioning the Apocalypse 5
2. Coming of Age in ­Post-Apocalyptic Worlds 22
3. Speaking to Them, Speaking to Us 45
4. Why Super 8 Can’t Be E.T. 70
5. The Difficulty of Framing a Real Apocalypse 87
6. The Apocalyptic Landscape of Love 102
7. Hollywood’s ­Doomsday-Prepper Backpacks 128
8. Emmerich’s Apocalyptic Visions of Shakespeare in Anonymous 155
9. The New Superhero Dynamic 172
Conclusion: Towards Our Better Selves 197
Bibliography 213
Index 223

Book Reviews & Awards

  • “Excellent insights into 21st century American films”—SFRA Review