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Title: Existential adventures and French connections : the influence of Nicholas Ray on the Nouvelle Vague
Author: Kouris, Nicolas
ISNI:       0000 0001 3602 1653
Awarding Body: University of Southampton
Current Institution: University of Southampton
Date of Award: 2008
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Nicholas Ray was one of the poetes maudits of the 1950s American cinema. With a Hollywood career that spanned a decade and a half, he survived on the periphery of the system before he was eventually ousted. As with Orson Welles and other American maverick pioneers, Ray was far more appreciated in France and rest of Europe than his own country, and there are several reasons for this. This thesis examines why and how Nicholas Ray's cinema was such a great influence and inspiration on the French critics of Cahiers du Cinema during the 1950s; the same individuals who would later become directors of the Nouvelle Vague during the next decade. While the first three chapters of the thesis investigate the 'why', the two final chapters look at how Ray's influence materialized in the Nouvelle Vague films of Francois Truffaut and Jean-Luc Godard. This thesis explores the potential of Ray's cinema in the 1950s through an aesthetic and cultural analysis of his* films in the context of the Hollywood industry and its genres. It further explores Ray's directorial achievements and his relation to the film authorship initiated by the Cahiers team, as well as his existentialism, which reflected the ideas of Albert Camus and Jean-Paul Sartre. Ray's cinema had a great impact on Cahiers magazine during the 1950s and the Nouvelle Vague in the 1960s. In addition to examining Ray's cinematic legacy on the work of Truffaut and Godard, the thesis goes further to extend this legacy (via Nouvelle Vague) to include New Hollywood pioneers (Arthur Perm, Robert Altman), New German Cinema directors (Wim Wenders), and contemporary American Independents (Jim Jarmusch).
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available