Home
Textual Analysis
Film History
Independent Study
Presentation
Film Project
Case Studies
Forum
Student Work
Shop EU
Shop US
Links
About
IB Film - Film History - 1946-1975
The period between 1946-1974 is very significant in the history of film.  After the second world war. The world was in ruins. It was newer expected that something like what happened was even possible.  The world wanted to stop this possibility to repeat something like this once again. This significantly influenced the film industry. 

This period was called neorealism. The directors wanted to show reality. They turned away from Hollywood tradition of showing everything beautifully. The the actresses were before always filmed in a beautiful light and in front of the camera was a special glass that made the actress look beautiful. The neorealism was mainly represented in Italy. 

In US a lot of war films were shot that showed the war how it really was. Meanwhile the tension between US and USSR was still growing so a lot of films were also used as propaganda. The film technology was still developing the color movie era started. In whole world the film industries were developing like in Japan Kurosawa Seven Samurai. 

Then came the the assassination of Kennedy and Vietnam. The whole world was shocked. 

I used as example of the realistic movies One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest. This was a great movie. The story is set in Asyllum. When this film was going to be shoot people sought that it would be horrible. This film was one of the greatest in history. It showed the reality, it showed the real feelings. The US made a lot of films on the theme of Vietnam if it was it right or it was not. How the years were passing the films were still more and more expensive. This led to the creation of large film studios.  David Minac

 

Year History Film
1946 January: Chinese Civil War resumes between Communist and Nationalist forces. March 5: Winston Churchill warns of the descent of an Iron Curtain across Europe. December 19: French landings in Indochina begin the First Indochina War. They are resisted by the Viet Minh communists who want national independence. World War II left the European film industry in ruins. 1946 - Frank Capra's It's a Wonderful Life premieres. The Best Years of Our Lives wins the Oscars for Best Picture. The Cannes Film Festival resumes, with 11 movies from different countries receiving the Grand Prix du Festival International du Film. Also released are The Big Sleep, starring Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall, Notorious, directed by Alfred Hitchcock, starring Cary Grant and Ingrid Bergman.
1947 March 12: United States President Harry Truman announces the Truman Doctrine. The Doctrine states that the USA will remain committed to "contain" further communist expansion.  June 5: Secretary of State George Marshall outlines plans for a comprehensive program of economic assistance for the war-ravaged countries of Western Europe. It would become known throughout the world as the Marshall Plan. November 14: The United Nations passes a resolution calling for the withdrawal of foreign soldiers from Korea. The United States House of Representatives of the 80th Congress votes 346 to 17 to approve citations for contempt of Congress against the "Hollywood Ten." The Waldorf Statement is released by the executives of the United States motion picture industry, marking the beginning of the Hollywood blacklist. Elia Kazan's Gentleman's Agreement wins Best Picture and Best Director. Also released are Black Narcissus, Miracle on 34th Street, Quai des Orfèvres and Cecil B. DeMille's Unconquered. The Venice Film Festival resumes. The year's award is won by Siréna, a Czechoslovakian film about striking miners.
1948 1948 February 26: The Communist Party takes control in Czechoslovakia, after President Edvard Beneš accepts the resignation of all non-communist ministers. June 24: Soviet Premier Joseph Stalin orders the blockade of all land routes from West Germany to Berlin, in an attempt to starve out the French, British, and American forces from the city. In response, the three Western powers launch the Berlin Airlift to supply the citizens of Berlin by air. Laurence Olivier's Hamlet becomes the first British film to win the American Academy Award for Best Picture, winning also the Venice Film Festival's award.  Other releases include The Treasure of the Sierra Madre and Key Largo, both starring Humphrey Bogart, Johnny Belinda, starring Jane Wyman and earning her the Best Actress Oscar, The Red Shoes by Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger, Rope by Alfred Hitchcock with James Stewart, Joan of Arc, starring Ingrid Bergman and Vittorio de Sica's Bicycle Thieves (Ladri di biciclette). 
1949 April 4: The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) is founded by Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Iceland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, the United Kingdom, and the United States, in order to resist Communist expansion; May 11: The Soviet blockade of Berlin ends with the re-opening of access routes to Berlin. The airlift continues until September, in case the Soviets re-establish the blockade. Robert Rossen's All the King's Men wins the Academy Awards for Best Picture, Joseph L. Mankiewicz wins Best Director for A Letter to Three Wives.  Also released are Sands of Iwo Jima, directed by Allan Dwan, UK's black comedy Kind Hearts and Coronets. Jacques Tati releases Jour de Fête. The Cannes Film Festival Grand Prix du Festival International du Film is awarded to Carol Reed's The Third Man. The award of the Venice Film Festival changes its name into the Golden Lion of St. Mark - the first recipient is France's Manon, directed by Henri-Georges Clouzot.
1950 June 25: North Korea invades South Korea, sparking the Korean War. The growth of television prompts the studios and companies to seek new motivations to put audiences back in theaters, including epics and new genres, most notably B movies and science fiction. Samson and Delilah, produced and directed by Cecil B. DeMille and starring Victor Mature and Hedy Lamarr, rules the US box office. Joseph L. Mankiewicz's All About Eve breaks Academy Award records by earning 14 nominations. It wins 6 Awards, including Best Picture and Best Director.  Destination Moon inaugurates a decade of science-fiction B movies. In Italy, Roberto Rosselini directs Ingrid Bergman in Stromboli. In Japan, Akira Kurosawa directs Rashomon. 
1951 September 20: Greece and Turkey join NATO. Churchill and the Conservative Party re-elected in Britain.  An American in Paris wins Best Picture at the Academy Awards, with Best Director going to George Stevens for A Place in the Sun, starring Elizabeth Taylor and Montgomery Clift, Humphrey Bogart winning Best Actor for John Huston's The African Queen, also starring Katharine Hepburn, and Vivien Leigh winning Best Actress for Elia Kazan's A Streetcar Named Desire, also starring Marlon Brando. The Cannes Film Festival resumes. Rashomon, directed by Akira Kurosawa, wins the Golden Lion. The Berlin Film Festival begins.
1952

June 30: The Marshall Plan ends, with European industrial output now well above that of 1938. The United Kingdom successfully tests its atomic bomb in Operation Hurricane. The test makes the UK the world's third nuclear power. November 1: The United States detonates the world's first hydrogen bomb in Operation Ivy.

Cecil B. DeMille's circus epic, The Greatest Show on Earth wins the Best Picture Oscar and is #1 at the box office, followed by Quo Vadis and Ivanhoe. Also released are The Snows of Kilimanjaro, starring Gregory Peck, Ava Gardner and Susan Hayward, 5 Fingers, directed by Joseph L. Mankiewicz, High Noon, Charles Chaplin's Limelight, Orson Welles' Othello and musical Singin' in the Rain.
1953 January 20: Dwight D. Eisenhower becomes President of the United States. March 5: Joseph Stalin dies, setting off a power struggle to succeed him. September 7: Nikita Khrushchev becomes leader of the Soviet Communist Party The Robe debuts as the first anamorphic, widescreen CinemaScope film and takes the top of the box office.  It is followed by Best Picture Academy Award winner From Here to Eternity; Shane; How to Marry a Millionaire; Peter Pan (Disney); Hans Christian Andersen, starring Danny Kaye and Farley Granger; House of Wax, the first 3-D movie to ever make the box office top ten, starring Vincent Price and Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, starring Jane Russell and Marilyn Monroe. Audrey Hepburn wins Best Actress Oscar for Roman Holiday.
1954 September 8: Foundation of the South East Asian Treaty Organization (SEATO) by Australia, France, New Zealand, Pakistan, Thailand, the Philippines, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Like NATO, it is founded to resist Communist expansion, this time in the Philippines and Indochina. On the Waterfront wins the Academy Awards for Best Picture, The box office is led by White Christmas, followed by the The Caine Mutiny, The Glenn Miller Story and Alfred Hitchcock's Rear Window. Godzilla makes his debut by appearing in Godzilla (1954 film). Other releases include 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, Alfred Hitchcock's Dial M for Murder, musical Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, Sabrina starring Humphrey Bogart, Audrey Hepburn and William Holden and Federico Fellini's La strada.
1955 May 14: The Warsaw Pact is founded in Eastern Europe and includes East Germany, Czechoslovakia, Poland, Hungary, Romania, Albania, Bulgaria, and the Soviet Union. It acts as the Communist military counterpart to NATO. The top grossing films are Disney's Lady and the Tramp. Rebel Without a Cause and East of Eden, starring James Dean (who would die later this year), are released, as are Bad Day at Black Rock, Guys and Dolls, The Night of the Hunter, Picnic, Rififi (Du rififi chez les hommes), The Seven Year Itch with Marilyn Monroe and Alfred Hitchcock's To Catch a Thief and The Trouble with Harry.
1956 February 25 : Nikita Khrushchev delivers the speech "On the Personality Cult and its Consequences" at the closed session of the Twentieth Party Congress of the CPSU. The speech marks the beginning of the De-Stalinization. October 23: Hungarian Revolution of 1956: Hungarians revolt against the Soviet dominated government. They are crushed by the Soviet military, which reinstates a Communist government. The Ten Commandments, starring Charlton Heston, is the top grossing film, followed by Guys and Dolls and The King and I, starring Yul Brynner and Deborah Kerr. The Best Picture Academy Award is won by Around the World in Eighty Days. Best Director is George Stevens, for Giant. Other releases include High Society, Ingrid Bergman's Anastasia, Invasion of the Body Snatchers, The Man Who Knew Too Much, Moby Dick, The Searchers with John Wayne, Douglas Sirk's Written on the Wind and War and Peace, starring Audrey Hepburn. Elvis Presley's first film, Love Me Tender, opens. The Palme d'Or (Cannes Film Festival) is won by The Silent World (Le monde du silence), directed by Jacques-Yves Cousteau and Louis Malle, from France. 
1957 January 5: The Eisenhower doctrine commits the US to defending Iran, Pakistan, and Afghanistan from Communist influence. October 4: Sputnik satellite launched. The Bridge on the River Kwai earns Best Picture, Best Director (David Lean) and Best Actor (Alec Guinness). Nights of Cabiria (Le Notti di Cabiria), directed by Federico Fellini, Italy, wins Best Foreign Film. Friendly Persuasion, directed by William Wyler, wins the Cannes Film Festival and 12 Angry Men, directed by Sidney Lumet, wins Berlin's Golden Bear. Jailhouse Rock, starring Elvis Presley, is released. Also released this year are An Affair to Remember starring Cary Grant and Deborah Kerr, A Farewell to Arms with Rock Hudson and Jennifer Jones, Funny Face with Fred Astaire and Audrey Hepburn, and Ingmar Bergman's The Seventh Seal and Wild Strawberries.
1958 July 14: A coup in Iraq, the 14 July Revolution, removes the pro-British monarch. Iraq begins to receive support from the Soviets. Iraq will maintain close ties with the Soviets throughout the Cold War. Gigi earns Best Picture honours at the Oscars. Mon Oncle (My Uncle), directed by Jacques Tati, France, earns Best Foreign Film. Soviet Union's The Cranes Are Flying, directed by Mikheil Kalatozishvili, wins the Palme d'Or. Bergman's Wild Strawberries wins the Berlin Festival. The Rickshaw Man (Muhomatsu no issho), directed by Hiroshi Inagaki, Japan, wins the Venice Golden Lion. Alfred Hitchcock's Vertigo is released. Other releases include Otto Preminger's Bonjour Tristesse, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof , The Defiant Ones with Tony Curtis and Sidney Poitier, Oscar and Hammerstein's South Pacific and Orson Welles' Touch of Evil. 
1959 January 1: Cuban Revolution. Fidel Castro becomes the leader of a new Marxist Cuba. Cuban-inspired guerrilla movements spring up across Latin America. December: Formation of the Viet Cong in South Vietnam. It is a Communist insurgent movement that vows to overthrow the anti-communist South Vietnamese government. It is supplied extensively by North Vietnam. Ben-Hur premieres to win an unprecedented 11 Academy Awards, including Best Picture. Alfred Hitchcock's North by Northwest, Some Like it Hot with Marilyn Monroe, Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon, Hiroshima Mon Amour, Disney's Sleeping Beauty, Black Orpheus, from Brazil, which earns Best Foreign Film and the Palme d'Or. The Three Stooges make their 180th and last short film, Sappy Bullfighters.
1960 May 1: American pilot Francis Gary Powers is shot down in his U-2 spy plane while flying at high altitude over the Soviet Union, resulting in the U-2 Incident, an embarrassment for President Eisenhower. June: Sino-Soviet split: The Chinese leadership, angered at being treated as the "junior partner" to the Soviet Union, declares its version of Communism superior and begin to compete with the Soviets for influence, thus adding a third dimension to the Cold War  Alfred Hitchcock's Psycho
1961 January 20: John F. Kennedy becomes President of the United States. April 15: Bay of Pigs Invasion: A CIA-backed invasion of Cuba by counter-revolutionaries ends in failure. August 13: The Berlin Wall is built by the Soviets to stop the flood of people attempting to escape East Germany. West Side Story premieres
1962 October 16: Cuban Missile Crisis: The Soviets have secretly been installing military bases, including nuclear weapons, on Cuba, some 90 miles from the US mainland. Kennedy orders a "quarantine" (a naval blockade) of the island that intensifies the crisis and brings the US and the USSR to the brink of nuclear war. In the end, the Soviets back down and agree to withdraw their nuclear missiles from Cuba, in exchange for a secret agreement by Kennedy pledging to withdraw similar American missiles from Turkey, and guaranteeing that the US will not move against the Castro regime. Lawrence of Arabia and To Kill a Mockingbird premiere
1963 November 22: John F. Kennedy is shot and killed in Dallas. His vice-president Lyndon B. Johnson becomes President of the United States. Alfred Hitchcock's The Birds
1964

October 14: Leonid Brezhnev succeeds Khrushchev to become General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union October 16: China tests its first atomic bomb. The test makes China the world's fourth nuclear power.

 
The Beatles star in A Hard Day's Night,  Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb,  My Fair Lady
1965 March 8: US military build up to defend South Vietnam. North Vietnam has also committed its forces in the war. US begins sustained bombing of North Vietnam. Doctor Zhivago The Sound of Music
1966 August 26: South African Border War begins Who's Afraid of Virginia Wolf?
1967 May 25: Uprising in Naxalbari, India marking the expansion of Maoism as a violent, anti-US and anti-Soviet, revolutionary movement across a number of developing countries. The Graduate Bonnie and Clyde Guess Who's Coming to Dinner
1968 January 30: Tet Offensive in South Vietnam begins. Prague Spring in Czechoslovakia. Stanley Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey
1969 January 20: Richard Nixon becomes President of the United States. March 17: The US begins bombing Communist sanctuaries in Cambodia. July 25: "Vietnamization" begins with US troop withdrawals from Vietnam and the burden of combat being placed on the South Vietnamese. Midnight Cowboy Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid The Wild Bunch Easy Rider
1970 March 18: Lon Nol takes power in Cambodia. Khmer Rouge Communists begin attacking the new regime, which wants to end foreign presence in Cambodia. Patton and M*A*S*H are released
1971 February 8: South Vietnamese forces enter Laos to briefly cut the Ho Chi Minh trail A Clockwork Orange The French Connection
1972 March 30: North Vietnam invades South Vietnam only to be repulsed by the South with major American air support. The Godfather
1973 January 27: The Paris Peace Accords end American involvement in the Vietnam War. Congress cuts off funds for the continued bombing of Indochina. The Sting and The Exorcist are released
1974 August 9: Gerald Ford becomes President of the United States upon the resignation of Nixon. Chinatown The Godfather Part II
1975    
 

Back to film history home

 
 

    

free hit counters