Entertainment Books:

Projecting the Shadow

Cyborg Hero in American Film


Paperback / softback

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Projecting the Shadow by Janice Hocker Rushing
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Part human, part machine, the cyborg is the hero of an increasingly popular genre of American film and a cultural icon emblematic of an emergent postmodern mythology. Using the cyborg film as a point of departure, the authors examine how we rework Western myths and initiation rites in the face of new technologies. Through in-depth examinations of six representative films - "Jaws", "The Deer Hunter", "The Manchurian Candidate", "Blade Runner", "The Terminator", and "Terminator 2" - the authors track the narrative's thread from the hunter to his technological nemesis, demonstrating how each film represents an unfolding hunter myth. For each movie, Rushing and Frentz show how uninitiated male hunters slowly lose control over their weapons. In "Jaws", a "soft" man, dominated by technology, can re-acquire the heroic hunter qualities he needs by teaming up with a "savage" man and a "technological" man. In doing so, he can still conquer the prey. "The Manchurian Candidate" charts how technology can turn a human into a weapon; "Blade Runner" perfects the artificial human with its manufactured replicants who are "more than human"; and "The Terminator" introduces a female hunter who leads humanity in its struggle against technology.
Release date Australia
December 7th, 1995
Country of Publication
United States
2nd ed.
30 halftones, 3 line drawings
University of Chicago Press
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