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Cinematic AppealsThe Experience of New Movie Technologies$
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Ariel Rogers

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780231159173

Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.7312/columbia/9780231159173.001.0001

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East of Eden in Cinemascope

East of Eden in Cinemascope

Intimacy Writ Large

(p.61) 2 East of Eden in Cinemascope
Cinematic Appeals

Ariel Rogers

Columbia University Press

This chapter examines how Elia Kazan's version of East of Eden (1955) both draws on and transgresses the widescreen norms established by early Cinerama and CinemaScope films, such as This Is Cinerama (1952) and The Robe (1953). Kazan's most striking deviations from these norms—including his use of canted angles and close framing—offered viewers a destabilizing experience of the body, both rendering screen bodies at an unprecedented scale, and accentuating the viewers' own physical situation in the theater. Another important aspect of the film is actor James Dean's performance and appearance on the gigantic screen, which invited viewers to experience how new technologies exhibited the human body as simultaneously massive and vulnerable.

Keywords:   Elia Kazan, East of Eden, This Is Cinerama, The Robe, canted angles, close framing, screen bodies, James Dean

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