Here comes the Sunn: documentary cinema's New Morning in America

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Here comes the Sunn: documentary cinema's New Morning in America

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The question of whether and how the 1970s "pseudo-documentaries" of Sunn Classic Pictures not only reflect but promote the larger cultural and political shift that took place in the United States throughout the decade is explored. A discursive analysis of seven Sunn films is performed in order to document a case study of the company and its products. The results show that the company's chief executive, Charles E. Sellier, by way of becoming one of the most successful independent film producers of all time, effectively tapped into the desire of a growing number of Americans for relief from troubling news, the sort reported in documentaries of the `60s and, to a lesser extent, the `70s. Cinema's role in informing the study of journalism is discussed, as is the sense in which the Sunn films opposed the tradition of muckraking documentary cinema and promoted New Right and evangelical Christian ideology.


University of Minnesota M.A. Thesis. May 2014. Advisor: Giovanna Dell'Orto. Major: Mass Communication. 1 computer file (PDF); iii, 71 pages.

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Nelson, Rob. (2014). Here comes the Sunn: documentary cinema's New Morning in America. Retrieved from the University Digital Conservancy,

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