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date: 05 March 2021

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter examines the cinema of Edward Yang, especially his 1985 film Taipei Story, within three crucial contexts: first, the development of auteur theory in film criticism and then film studies; second, the cultivation of a director-centered production strategy in the Taiwanese film industry in the 1980s; and third, the reconstruction of Taipei during the East Asian economic boom. Yang's work reveals the intimate connections among these phenomena because it reemphasizes the fundamental but overlooked relationship between the cinematic auteur and mise-en-scène, or the staging of bodies, objects, and settings on screen. This relationship is particularly evident in a series of city films created in East Asia over the past three decades. Rather than view Yang's work through the frame of its formal experiments, this chapter argues that it is best understood through the material engagements made visible in his staging of urban life.

Keywords: Edward Yang, Taiwan, art cinema, auteur, film theory, architecture, set design, urban cinema

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