In The Films of Walter Hill: Another Time, Another Place, Brian Brems explores how, as action emerged as a full-fledged genre of cinema, Walter Hill established his position in the genre, first as a screenwriter and then as a director. Hill, Brems argues, helped merge the thematic and stylistic concerns of the Western and film noir into a new action cinema, establishing a reputation for mythic, highly-stylized storytelling driven by a relentless pace. Through analyses of Hill’s filmography, this book demonstrates his consistent use of the architecture of classical storytelling to help codify the language of the action movie. These observations are supported by extensive conversations with Walter Hill and several of his on-screen collaborators, including Lance Henriksen, Sigourney Weaver, David Patrick Kelly, James Renmar, and William Sadler. Ultimately, Brems positions Hill as a key American film artist, whose work has inspired countless imitations.
Brian Brems is professor of film at the College of DuPage.
Chapter 1: The Action Man
Chapter 2: The Wild, The Hawks, and The Warriors
Chapter 3: Soldiers of (Mis)Fortune
Chapter 4: Black and White
Chapter 5: Down These Streets of Fire
Chapter 6: Black vs. White
Chapter 7: Last Men Standing
Chapter 8: Partners in Crime
Conclusion: Terminate with Extreme Prejudice
About the Author
"Walter Hill’s sharp, intelligent dynamic films have been a cult item among cinephiles and connoisseurs since the 1970s. Brian Brems expands this appreciation through an exhaustive comparative approach, illuminating the roots of Hill’s cinema in genre (noir, Western, musical), other filmmakers (Hawks, Peckinpah, Kurosawa), and contemporary cultural trends."
"The Films of Walter Hill reveals an underexplored Hollywood director who unleashed his fiery canon between genres (the Western, film noir), between New Hollywood and the blockbuster, between arthouse and action cinema, between Hawks and Peckinpah, and between myth and reality. Brian Brems traces Hill’s films (1970s-2010s) through their cinematic techniques and deconstruction of male hierarchies, leadership, and ethics. Integrating foundational action genre scholarship, interviews with Hill and his actors, and comprehensive knowledge of the films, this book remains accessible to students, fans, and novices looking for a lively articulation of where action movies come from and why they matter."