Film 101: Bombshell
1933 | Comedy/Drama, Black and white | Dir. Victor Fleming (Gone with the Wind, Wizard of Oz)
A glamorous film star rebels against the studio, her pushy press agent and a family of hangers-on.
Jean Harlow stars in this screwball comedy about a star who wants to get away from it all, only to find herself even deeper in a world of acting and pretense. We’ll discuss the classical Hollywood studio system of star power and film technique as well as the eternal allure of the behind-the-scenes. We’ll also consider Production Code censorship and the problem of genre and type-casting.
About Film 101: Behind the Scenes:
One of cinema’s great subjects is filmmaking itself. That might seem narcissistic, but behind-the-scenes films are a great way to figure out how movies work. In these five films, we’ll examine some of the great “movie-movies” of all time. We’ll consider both how these films work and how these moviemakers think they work. We’ll pay special attention to the star-making process, and to the question of how film thinks about its media “rivals” like radio and television.