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Mad, bad and dangerous? : the scientist and the cinema

Author: Christopher Frayling
Publisher: London : Reaktion, 2005.
Edition/Format:   Book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Database:WorldCat
Summary:
"Since its origin, cinema has had an uneasy relationship with science and technology: scientists are almost always impossibly mad or impossibly saintly, and technology is usually very bad for you. In Mad, Bad and Dangerous? Christopher Frayling explores the genealogy of the cinematic scientist in films made in western Europe and, especially, in Hollywood, showing how the fictional scientist has often been used to  Read more...
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Details

Genre/Form: History
Material Type: Internet resource
Document Type: Book, Internet Resource
All Authors / Contributors: Christopher Frayling
ISBN: 1861892551 9781861892553
OCLC Number: 60611660
Description: 239 p. : ill., ports. ; 24 cm.
Contents: Preface --
1. The scarecrow's brain --
2. The new alchemists --
3. Rotwang and sons --
4. Frankenstein meets the milkman --
5. My lips are sealed --
6. It, son of them --
Conclusion --
References --
Photographic acknowledgements --
Index.
Responsibility: Christopher Frayling.

Abstract:

"Since its origin, cinema has had an uneasy relationship with science and technology: scientists are almost always impossibly mad or impossibly saintly, and technology is usually very bad for you. In Mad, Bad and Dangerous? Christopher Frayling explores the genealogy of the cinematic scientist in films made in western Europe and, especially, in Hollywood, showing how the fictional scientist has often been used to represent the prevailing phobias of the time: in the 1920s it was poison gas, in the 1950s it was botched atomic research, and today it is genetic engineering; in the meantime, the traditional 'mad scientist' has made way for the nameless lab genius controlled by global corporations. But there are surprising consistencies too." "In parallel, Christopher Frayling also examines the portrayal of real-life scientists in movies, noting how they are in the main depicted as misfits, immersed in their work, sacrificing any normal life to the interests of science, yet distrusted by the scientific establishment. Interestingly, the cinematic portrayal of fictional and real-life scientists follow very similar dramatic conventions: the mad scientist and the saintly one may be the two sides of the same Hollywood coin. Mad, Bad and Dangerous? concludes with timely thoughts about how all these cinematic images have an impact on everyday life."--BOOK JACKET.

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schema:reviewBody""Since its origin, cinema has had an uneasy relationship with science and technology: scientists are almost always impossibly mad or impossibly saintly, and technology is usually very bad for you. In Mad, Bad and Dangerous? Christopher Frayling explores the genealogy of the cinematic scientist in films made in western Europe and, especially, in Hollywood, showing how the fictional scientist has often been used to represent the prevailing phobias of the time: in the 1920s it was poison gas, in the 1950s it was botched atomic research, and today it is genetic engineering; in the meantime, the traditional 'mad scientist' has made way for the nameless lab genius controlled by global corporations. But there are surprising consistencies too." "In parallel, Christopher Frayling also examines the portrayal of real-life scientists in movies, noting how they are in the main depicted as misfits, immersed in their work, sacrificing any normal life to the interests of science, yet distrusted by the scientific establishment. Interestingly, the cinematic portrayal of fictional and real-life scientists follow very similar dramatic conventions: the mad scientist and the saintly one may be the two sides of the same Hollywood coin. Mad, Bad and Dangerous? concludes with timely thoughts about how all these cinematic images have an impact on everyday life."--BOOK JACKET."
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