British Popular Culture- Cinema

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  • The rise and fall and rise of cinema.
    • Cinema grew significantly in popularity during WWI, and this was continued with the introduction of 'talkies' in 1928.
    • Cinema remained the most popular and important medium of popular culture.
    • Cinema numbers rose from 3,000 in 1914 to almost 5,000 in '30s.
    • Cinemas changed from seating 200-400 people to seating up to 2,000 people.
    • '50- average person went to the cinema 28 time a year.
    • Demand for escapism led to a cinema boom during WWII.
      • In Which We Serve (1942) was popular
      • The Gentle Sex (1943) explored wartime problems for women.
      • American films depicted British life in Mrs Miniver (1942)
    • British Popular Culture (Cinema)
      • Censorship
        • The British Board of Film Censors (BBFC) was established in 1912, and was against escapism mostly.
        • The BBFC saw it as their duty to protect Britons from bad language, sex, and subversive ideas.
        • They set out '43 rules' in 1917 that were accepted by local authorities as what was okay to show and what wasn't
        • Between '28-'39, the BBFC banned 140 films and forced thousand more to edit their content.
        • The 1959 Obscenity Act and 1968 Theatres Act led to increased permissiven-ess at the BBFC
          • Allowed violent films like Get Carter and A Clockwork Orange in 1971.
          • Allowed Sexual films like Confessions of a Window Cleaner in 1974.
      • Americanisa-tion
        • WWI led to Brit film industry collapse (lack of funding,and studio disruption)
        • By 1925, only 5% of films shown in British cinemas were British.
        • The 1927 Quota Act ensured all British-made films made up 20% of those shown by 1936.
        • The reason that the British preferred American films were the higher production values in addition to the glamour of American heroes and heroines.
          • Youths were spotted dressing like gangsters and actresses.
          • Additionally, youths were reported saying American phrases like 'oh yeah?' and 'sez you!'
        • Improved production, acting, and the toning down of elite manners and accents led to British films becoming more popular.
        • A ''new wave' of films in the late '50s and '60s involved Look Back in Anger (1959), which was about gritty working-class lives.
          • Relieved critical acclaim.
          • Most people preferred James Bond films and the Carry On series.
        • British film production crashed in the '70s due to cuts in American funding on British films, and Conservative government cuts to the National Film Finance Corporation.
          • Brith films made each year fell from 49 in 1968 to 31 in 1980
    • After the record-high ticket sales (1.635bn) in 1946, attendance fell steadily until the late '80s.
    • Shrinking audiences forced over half the cinemas in the country to close between 1955 and 1963.
    • It wasn't until the opening of state of the art multiplexes in '85 that attendances began to recover again
  • Audience
    • In '46, 69% of 16-19-year-olds went once a week compared to 11% of over-60s.
    • More people went to cinemas in the North of England than the South- this was due to southerners have more income to spend on more expensive activities.
    • Tastes cut across class boundaries- comedy, musical romances, drama, tragedy, history, crime, nature and reality.
    • Saturday mornings were set aside for children with age-specific films and cheap seats
      • This was most popular in the late 1940s and early 1950s
    • British Popular Culture (Cinema)
      • Censorship
        • The British Board of Film Censors (BBFC) was established in 1912, and was against escapism mostly.
        • The BBFC saw it as their duty to protect Britons from bad language, sex, and subversive ideas.
        • They set out '43 rules' in 1917 that were accepted by local authorities as what was okay to show and what wasn't
        • Between '28-'39, the BBFC banned 140 films and forced thousand more to edit their content.
        • The 1959 Obscenity Act and 1968 Theatres Act led to increased permissiven-ess at the BBFC
          • Allowed violent films like Get Carter and A Clockwork Orange in 1971.
          • Allowed Sexual films like Confessions of a Window Cleaner in 1974.
      • Americanisa-tion
        • WWI led to Brit film industry collapse (lack of funding,and studio disruption)
        • By 1925, only 5% of films shown in British cinemas were British.
        • The 1927 Quota Act ensured all British-made films made up 20% of those shown by 1936.
        • The reason that the British preferred American films were the higher production values in addition to the glamour of American heroes and heroines.
          • Youths were spotted dressing like gangsters and actresses.
          • Additionally, youths were reported saying American phrases like 'oh yeah?' and 'sez you!'
        • Improved production, acting, and the toning down of elite manners and accents led to British films becoming more popular.
        • A ''new wave' of films in the late '50s and '60s involved Look Back in Anger (1959), which was about gritty working-class lives.
          • Relieved critical acclaim.
          • Most people preferred James Bond films and the Carry On series.
        • British film production crashed in the '70s due to cuts in American funding on British films, and Conservative government cuts to the National Film Finance Corporation.
          • Brith films made each year fell from 49 in 1968 to 31 in 1980

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