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Echoing Across the Mediterranean and the Pacific: Cinematic Resonance and Cross-Cultural Adaptation in Contemporary European and East Asian Cinema


Inspired and informed by the work of Rey Chow and Shu-mei Shih, among others, this dissertation explores crossovers between East Asian cinema on the one hand and French and Italian cinema on the other. Taiwanese director Tsai Ming-liang's 2001 film What Time is it There?, for instance, cites and builds upon François Truffaut's Les 400 coups throughout. Cross-cultural films such as these have subsequently been referred to as "Sinofrench." Korean director Park Chan Wook's film Thirst, which is discussed as an example of "Franco-Korean" cinema, critiques traditional Korean familial structure through its citation of Émile Zola's 1867 novel Thérèse Raquin. Each chapter of the dissertation therefore focuses on a different incarnation of hybrid cinema. I argue that Chinese, Japanese Korean, and Hong Kong filmmakers create new subgenres of hybrid film by interacting with, adapting, and "textually reincarnating" French literature and film. On the other hand, I explore the reasons why cinematic interactions between Italy and China are less prevalent and, finally, how these other types of hybrid cinema may inspire Italian filmmakers to proceed in the future.

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