16. Melodrama

  1. Drew Casper

Published Online: 3 SEP 2012

DOI: 10.1002/9781444395242.ch16

Hollywood Film 1963-1976: Years of Revolution and Reaction

Hollywood Film 1963-1976: Years of Revolution and Reaction

How to Cite

Casper, D. (2011) Melodrama, in Hollywood Film 1963-1976: Years of Revolution and Reaction, Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford, UK. doi: 10.1002/9781444395242.ch16

Author Information

  1. University of Southern California, School of the Cinematic Arts, Los Angeles, CA 90089-2211, USA

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 3 SEP 2012
  2. Published Print: 11 MAR 2011

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9781405188272

Online ISBN: 9781444395242



  • melodrama;
  • melodrama, and post-French Revolutionary fiction - late nineteenth-/early twentieth-century theater;
  • universe dichotomized by good and evil - another precept, often abandoned;
  • The Last Picture Show (C, 1975) - using the genre to engage in social issues;
  • Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?'s (WB, 1966) - spousal sparring, breaking ground as a middle-aged history professor topped every blow of his wife;
  • Straw Dogs (ABC, 1971), d/co-w Sam Peckinpah's first non-western;
  • road film and biker film - trafficked with the next stage of demythed family;
  • female melodrama, the era's female - resisting liberation, change, crisis, conflict, cataclysm, the very heartbeat of drama;
  • more frequent classical paradigm - delving into a female's personal, emotional often male- and parent-caused troubles;
  • romance melodrama, of The Four Loves - Hollywood commitment to eros, with C. S. Lewis, storge (affection), amicitia (friendship), eros (sexual love) and agape (love of God)


This chapter contains sections titled:

  • Family Melodrama

  • Road Film and Biker Film

  • Female Melodrama

  • Male Melodrama

  • Romance Melodrama

  • Buddy Film