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ReFocus: The Films of Barbara Kopple$
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Jeff Jaeckle and Susan Ryan

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9781474439947

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: September 2019

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9781474439947.001.0001

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Kopple and her Critics

Kopple and her Critics

(p.225) Chapter 14 Kopple and her Critics
ReFocus: The Films of Barbara Kopple

Gregory Brown

Edinburgh University Press

Barbara Kopple’s considerable portfolio of work has consistently garnered critical attention, both positive and negative. Through their reviews, critics reveal fundamental themes and characteristics found in her films. Among those issues explored are her commitments and abilities to expose injustice and crises, her varied approaches to covering celebrities, how successfully she hits the heart of a story, and her cultural contextualization or ability to translate the experiences of one group to another. This chapter examines the critical response to many of her films in relation to common themes and issues, and suggests that the success of her earlier, award-winning films about labour and social injustice may have influenced critical reviews of her later films such as celebrity profiles and forays into reality television.

Keywords:   celebrity profiles, cultural context, critics, American Dream, The Hamptons, Harlan County U.S.A., Running from Crazy, reviews, social issues

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