Some Films to Watch:
All that Heaven Allows (Douglas Sirk, 1955)
American Beauty (Sam Mendes, 1999)
Back To The Future (Robert Zemeckis, 1985)
The ‘Burbs (Joe Dante, 1989)
Far From Heaven (Todd Haynes, 2002)
The Incredibles (Brad Bird, 2004)
The Graduate (Mike Nichols, 1967)
Happiness (Todd Solndz, 1998)
It’s a Wonderful Life (Frank Capra, 1946)
The Oranges (Julian Farino, 2011)
Pleasantville (Gary Ross, 1998)
The Stepford Wives (Bryan Forbes, 1975)
The Stepford Wives (Frank Oz, 2004)
The Truman Show (Peter Weir, 1998)
Some Academic Writing to Explain:
“Hollywood’s anachronistic vision in this regard stands as testament to the profound cultural influence of the suburban landscape in the postwar years: for the development and subsequent massive expansion – particularly in the years and decades following the end of World War II – of ‘suburbia’ entailed the construction of not only a new kind of physical landscape, but new psychic and emotional landscapes as well.”
– Robert Beuka, “’Cue the Sun’: Soundings from Millennial Suburbia,” Iowa Journal of Culture Studies 3 (Fall 2003). Accessed Online.
“Americans are obsessed with houses – their own and everyone else’s. We judge our selves and our neighbours by where and how we live.”
– Dell Upton, Architecture in the United States (Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press, 1998), 14.
“The city started out as the culprit. But by the postwar era, the suburbs had elbowed their way into that maligned position – the site of social dysfunction and pathology. Hell, it seemed, moved from the city to the suburbs – like everyone else.”
– Becky Nicolaides, ‘ How Hell Moved from the City to the Suburbs’ in The New Suburban History, eds. Kevin Kruse and Thomas Sugrue, (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2006), 80.
How do you feel about your white picket fence now?