Synthesis Paper Revision

Synthesis Paper Revision - Harris 1 Matt Harris Dr Gina...

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Harris 1 Matt Harris Dr. Gina Weaver Composition II 14 November 2007 Hollywood and History: A Match Made in… Nowhere… Hollywood is a name as timeless as it’s legacy. It has given us film after film, entertaining us, captivating us, appalling us, and exciting us; but educating us? Some would argue that Hollywood does not exemplify historical accuracy in its films, television shows, and most definitely not it’s culture. As great as Hollywood is, it has a tough time staying true to facts without obvious exaggeration. They feel as if Hollywood distorts its facts to promote nationalism, additional profit, and its own agenda in general. Some scholars feel that all Hollywood can do for history is to take even the most boring historical event into a feature film complete with a hero, a hot girl, an off beat sidekick, and a villain. Others would argue that Hollywood complements history and distorts only the unimportant facts while staying true to the general form that is expressed. Some feel that film is a valid and necessary accessory to the modern classroom. One view is that Hollywood films can be used in the classroom as a supplement, but its historical value falls undoubtedly short of the merit of having true historical significance. Vivian Sobchak says, “The Hollywood historical epic has been despised, if not completely ignored, by most “serious” scholars of American cinema and historiography”(Sobchack,25). She feels as if Hollywood has ridden itself of validity in the realm of scholars and historians. I will present excerpts from journals that support the either of the two views. I will also show documented reasons as to why there are not
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Harris 2 more men and women in Hollywood ready to take up the challenge of accurate historical/ educational film. Other scholars feel that Hollywood has a particular selfishness about it when it comes to films, sacrificing accuracy and facts for better heroes and more interesting storylines. This substitution helps to promote the almighty dollar that rules Hollywood. In an essay, Siegfried Kracauer stated “The implications of this overall principle are obvious: Hollywood must try to captivate the masses without endangering it’s affiliation with vested interests” (Kracauer,54). Kracauer is implying that Hollywood only cares for it’s own agenda in the face of scholars and historians, appealing to the masses instead of pleasing those of whom this films matters or has an affiliation to. It’s not that Hollywood
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