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Beaches: Concepts and Development

  • Michael Walker
Chapter
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Abstract

A key beach trope is the drifting/lonely/unhappy woman on a beach. The trope is relevant to the three 1954 films that marked the breakthrough of the beach ending (Sansho Dayu, Kenji Mizoguchi, Japan; La Strada, Federico Fellini, Italy; Drive a Crooked Road, Richard Quine, USA) and continues into later films. The US beach holiday films, dating from the late 1950s, offer a contrasting cluster of examples. This chapter also explores a key metaphor, the notion of a beach as a tabula rasa, and considers the significance of an empty beach in a film’s last shot. Renewal, an overarching feature of beach endings, is looked at in some detail through a range of examples. A more general feature of film endings—the presence and function of superego figures—is related to beach endings. One film with an ‘unachieved’ beach ending is noted.

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Michael Walker
    • 1
  1. 1.LondonUK

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