All posts tagged: gentlemen prefer blondes

Hollywood Prefers Blondes: Analysis of GENTLEMEN PREFER BLONDES and the Cinema of the 1950s

American cinema of the 1950s saw many changes and challenges. On January 1, 1950 the Paramount Decree had gone into effect, making it illegal for studios to control exhibition of their films. Additionally, the rising popularity of television meant that studios now had to compete for viewers and tried numerous methods, including color and widescreen, to draw in audiences. One film from this era that exemplifies the changing climate of cinema is Gentlemen Prefer Blondes. Released in 1953 and directed by Howard Hawks, this film serves as a microcosm of the 1950s. Hawks’ filmmaking career began in the early 1930s with gangster films such as Scarface and The Public Enemy. Hawks was conscious of the changes occurring in the film industry however and shifted the style of films he was making. He “suggested that Hollywood needed to make pictures with imagination that sustain interest because television is taking over the trivia.”[1] By the 1950s, Hawks was making screwball comedies such as Monkey Business and, of course, Gentlemen Prefer Blondes. Examination of the film Gentlemen Prefer …

Kelsie Schueneman is currently a junior at Oakland University from Milford, Michigan. Kelsie is majoring in Cinema Studies and minoring in Creative Writing. She is an editor of Screen Culture. Kelsie is passionate about female representation in film. This essay was written for Prof. Brendan Kredell's "Methods of Cinema Studies" course.