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The Return of the Epic Film$
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Andrew Elliott

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780748684021

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: September 2014

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748684021.001.0001

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Introduction

Introduction

The Return of the Epic

Chapter:
(p.1) Chapter 1 Introduction
Source:
The Return of the Epic Film
Author(s):

Andrew B. R. Elliott

Publisher:
Edinburgh University Press
DOI:10.3366/edinburgh/9780748684021.003.0001

The introduction offers an overview of the return of the epic. It begins by questioning whether Gladiator marks a return of the epic, examining the conditions which surrounded the film’s return, both economic and contextual. Next, the essay moves on to offer a provisional, working definition of what we mean by the epic film, and critiques general assumptions which often classify epic films as one single genre. Arguing that the epic film is a cyclical phenomenon, the chapter then looks at the new eipc film’s relationship with earlier cycles, questioning both why they fell out of favour in the 1960s, and why have returned in the 21st century.

Keywords:   genre, epic films, Gladiator (film), 1950s films, biblical epics, presentism, historical film

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