By J. Nilsson
This research examines how a selected number of movies became American cultural fabric of the Nineteen Nineties into satirical reviews for audience and unearths that there are components of resistance to norms and conventions in politics, to mainstream information channels and Hollywood, and to legitimate American background already embedded within the tradition.
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Additional resources for American Film Satire in the 1990s: Hollywood Subversion
It is important to realize that distribution deals between independent companies and major Hollywood studios existed before the aforementioned development picked up speed. A relevant example is Bob Roberts. 9 The release of Bob Roberts took place the year before Miramax was incorporated into Disney, that is, while it was still autonomous, making the deal with Paramount significant in this context. 10 However, independence is not only a matter of industry or of scale of production and distribution.
The focus is on how the films are constructed to elicit a particular effect, and less on how they function in their social and cultural context. So, why then complicate things by bringing in these themes? Satire is, and always has been, concerned with contemporary issues, public figures, attitudes, and events. Just as, for instance, Aristophanes satirized contemporary politicians and philosophers, Jonathan Swift the public treatment of the poor, Jane Austen the morals of the British upper class, Charlie Chaplin aspects of modernity, George Orwell totalitarianism, Joseph Heller the absurdities of war, Stanley Kubrick the logic of the cold war, and Jon Stewart the state of journalism in the United States, the films at hand satirize, for instance, political practices, commercial media logic, and officially accepted history.
In a speech during the Republican National Convention in August, 1992, President George H. W. ”30 The writers of The Simpsons clearly saw this as an opportunity, because in the very next episode of the show (quick work for an animated production) they had the Simpsons family watch Bush’s speech on TV. In the episode we have Bart Simpson turning to “the camera” and saying: “Hey, we’re just like the Waltons. 31 The conflict between Bush and The Simpsons can be seen in light of the opposition between Republicans and Democrats concerning family values, and Bush was not the only politician to offer critique via references to popular culture.
American Film Satire in the 1990s: Hollywood Subversion by J. Nilsson