Defining cult movies

The cultural politics of oppositional taste

Edited by Mark Jancovich, Antonio Lazario-Reboll, Julian Stringer and Andy Willis

Defining cult movies

Book Information

  • Format: Paperback
  • ISBN: 978-0-7190-6631-3
  • Pages: 256
  • Publisher: Manchester University Press
  • Price: £15.99
  • Published Date: August 2003
  • BIC Category: The arts / Film theory & criticism, PERFORMING ARTS / Film & Video / History & Criticism, Film history, theory & criticism, Film and Media
  • Series: Inside Popular Film


Concentrates on the analysis of cult movies, how they are defined, who defines them and the cultural politics of these definitions. Raises issues about the perception of it as an oppositional form of cinema, and of its strained relationships to mainstream cinema and the processes of institutionalisation and classification. Claims that the history of academic film studies and that of cult movie fandom are inextricably intertwined and raises fundamental questions about both cult movies themselves, and film studies as a discipline. Updates work on cult movies at a time when cult films and TV have become a central part of contemporary culture. Ranges over the full and entertaining gamut of cult films from Dario Argento, Spanish horror and Peter Jackson's New Zealand gorefests to sexploitation, kung fu and sci fi flicks, as well investigations of Sharon Stone, 'underground' and trivia.


1. Introduction
2. Esper, the renunciator: teaching 'bad' movies to good students - Jeffrey Sconce
3. The masculinity of cult - Joanne Hollows
4. The cult of masculinity: from fan-boys to academic bad-boys - Jacinda Read
5. Spanish horror and the flight from 'art' cinema 1967-1973 - Andrew Willis
6. Trading in horror, cult and matricide: Peter Jackson's phenomenal bad taste and New Zealand fantasies of inter/national cinematic success - Harmony H. Wu
7. The making of a cult reputation: topicality and controversy in the critical reception of 'Shivers' - Ernest Mathijs
8. The Argento effect - Peter Hutchings
9. Sexploitation as feminine territory: the films of Doris Wishman - Moya Luckett
10. Kung Fu cult masters: stardom, performance and 'authenticity' in Hong Kong martial arts films - Leon Hunt
11. 'Sharon Stone, screen diva': stardom, femininity and cult fandom - Rebecca Feasey
12. The importance of trivia: ownership, exclusion and authority in science fiction fandom - Nathan Hunt
13. Art, exploitation, underground - Mark Betz
14. Midnight sex-horror movies and the downtown avant-garde - Joan Hawkins


Mark Jancovich is Reader and Director of the Institute of Film Studies at the University of Nottingham. Antonio Lazaro Reboll is Lector in Hispanic Studies at the University of Nottingham. Julian Stringer is Lecturer in Film Studies at the University of Nottingham. Andrew Willis is Senior Lecturer in Media and Performance at the University of Salford

Defining cult movies

Edited by Mark Jancovich, Antonio Lazario-Reboll, Julian Stringer, Andy Willis

Paperback £15.99 / $23.95

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