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October 06 , 2009

Home Movies

The American Family in Contemporary Hollywood Cinema


The American family has long been at the centre of the typical Hollywood narrative. But the depiction of the nuclear family within contemporary mainstream US cinema has not yet been closely studied. Home Movies addresses this oversight by assessing recent cinematic representations of the family in terms of cultural politics and representations of gender, sexuality, race and class. Focusing on a diverse range of popular films - from Meet the Parents to The Incredibles - Claire Jenkins analyses the father-daughter relationship within sequels and series; Meryl Streep’s embodiment of the mother; the superhero family and extraordinary manifestations of the ordinary family; disaster films which depict the president as father; ‘mom-coms’ and Hollywood’s representations of the non-traditional family. She combines film studies, gender studies and family history to demonstrate the complexities of Hollywood’s family values.

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