Susan Hayward argues that writing on French cinema has tended to focus on either "great" film-makers or on non-specific movements, addressing moments of exception rather than the global picture. Her work offers a thorough and much-needed historical textualization of those moments and relocates them in their wider political and cultural context. Beginning with an "ecohistory" of the French film industry, she then traces the various movements in French cinema and the directors associated with them, including the avant-garde, poetic-realist, New Wave and today's postmodern cinema.
This new edition has been revised and updated to reflect developments in French cinema in the 1990s and beyond, including the GATT negotiations of 1993, French cinema's increasing dependence on investment from television, the rise of the multiplex, and the implications of the introduction of digital technology.
"French National Cinema" breaks new ground in the writing on French cinema, and its fresh approach will further our understanding of how France's cinema interfaces with France's concept of itself as a nation.