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Title: Interactions between contemporary American independent cinema and popular music culture
Author: Nicholls, Matthew
ISNI:       0000 0004 2745 2074
Awarding Body: University of Southampton
Current Institution: University of Southampton
Date of Award: 2011
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In recent years, many American independent films have become increasingly engaged with popular music culture and have used various forms of pop music in their soundtracks to various effects. Disparate films from a variety of genres use different forms of popular music in different ways, however these negotiations with pop music and its cultural surroundings have one true implication: that the 'independentness' (or 'indieness') of these movies is informed, anchored and embellished by their relationships with their soundtracks and/or the representations of or positioning within wider popular music subcultures. Independent American cinema, often distinguished from mainstream Hollywood cinema in terms of the separateness of its production or distribution, or its thematic and/or formal transgressions, can also be seen as distinctive in terms of its musical expression. This thesis will investigate the impact that these popular music cultures have had on contemporary American independent film since the 1980s. The primary objective of this thesis is not to discuss how these films are positioned within the industry (this has been done elsewhere), nor is it the aim to scrutinise a film's independentness (or 'unindependentness') in terms of its production, but rather to assert how music functions in these films and how a notion of independence (indieness) can be measured from the relationship between the film, its soundtrack, and a wider music culture. This will involve textual analyses of how popular music has been used to score a selection of key independent films (ranging from Blue Velvet and Do the Right Thing through to Ghost World and Juno), how popular music trends and subcultures have been represented on screen (such as dance music culture in Go), and how the film and music worlds have interacted, particularly through collaborations between directors and pop musicians (such as Darren Aronofsky and Clint Mansell).
Supervisor: Williams, Linda ; Hammond, Michael Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: N Visual arts (General) For photography, see TR